Top 22+ Common Diseases in Dachshunds: Symptoms, Treatments, and Prevention

The Dachshund is a big dog trapped in a little dog’s body. They are hearty, happy, stubborn, and loyal to a fault. It is no wonder the Dachshund is ranked number 10 on AKC’s most popular dog breeds for 2021. Because they are such hearty dogs, you do not really think about all the illnesses and diseases that can affect dogs, including Dachshunds.

As diligent Doxie parents, we definitely notice when there is something wrong or off with our dog. We sit up and take notice when our Dachshund has a loss of appetite, is lethargic, coughing, itching, or just acting odd. When we notice these symptoms, we are immediately calling the veterinarian and setting an appointment.

Remember, you know your Dachshund better than anyone and if you feel something is wrong, you should take that seriously and make sure your veterinarian knows you are expecting answers. Before your vet appointment, make a list of all your dog’s symptoms including a timeline of when they started or escalated. These notes will be extremely helpful to your vet when diagnosing your Doxie.

Subtle changes could just be signs that your pup is growing up and settling into adulthood, but sudden, acute changes could be a sign that something more sinister is brewing. Keep reading to learn more about the common diseases that dogs, even Dachshunds, can be diagnosed with. Some of these diseases are preventable while others are not.

Dachshund Health


Common Diseases that Can Be Prevented with Vaccine

1. Canine Adenovirus-2

Canine Adenovirus is a hepatitis virus that causes infectious tracheobronchitis or Canine Cough. This is an infectious disease that will spread from dog to dog and needs to be taken care of as soon as possible.

This disease is often spread at grooming salons, kennels, dog parks, or other places that your dog might be exposed to other dogs.

Once your dog has been exposed to Canine Adenovirus-2, it can take up to 10 days for the infection to set in. Without treatment for this disease, your dog could end up with pneumonia.

Canine Adenovirus Type 2 Symptoms

There are signs that your dog might have Canine Adenovirus-2 including:

  • A hacking cough
  • A dry cough.
  • Gagging when coughing.
  • Foaming discharge when coughing.
  • High fever.
  • Discharge from the nose.
  • Inflamed eyelids.

This disease will cause respiratory problems in your dog. Dogs that have this disease will have a cough that is dry, and they will often hack or retch when they are coughing.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Adenovirus-2

The treatment of this is to give antibiotics and supportive care. This is usually diagnosed after possible exposure such as your dog being left at a boarding house or after going to a dog park or being exposed to other dogs.

The treatment of this sickness will include medication and giving the dog fluids and rest to keep other infections from developing.

Prevention of Adenovirus-2

In order to prevent this sickness, there is a vaccine that is used on healthy Dachshunds called the CAV-2 vaccine. This vaccine will protect against the following sicknesses:

  • Canine Distemper Virus
  • Canine Adenovirus Type 1
  • Canine Adenovirus Type 2
  • Canine Parainfluenza Virus
  • Canine Parvovirus

One thing to note is that the vaccine will not always prevent the dog from contracting this sickness, but it will limit the severity of the infection of the vaccinated dog and the dog will more than likely experience a milder form of the Adenovirus.

The CAV-2 protects against other Adenovirus types which can be fatal to some dogs. This vaccination is given with other vaccines and can help to prevent other diseases that can cause your dog to become very ill or even die.

In order to make sure that you can prevent the spread of the Adenovirus-2:

  • Do not have puppies around other dogs until they are fully vaccinated.
  • Do not put your dog in the exposure of other unvaccinated dogs or sick dogs.
  • Keep your dogs out of places that have had an outbreak of Adenovirus-2.

2. Canine Parvovirus

The Canine Parvovirus causes parvo in puppies, and this is a very infectious disease. When your dog is around an infected dog or something that has been touched by the infection, your dog can get this disease.

Each time your dog licks or smells feces that is infected with parvo or anytime it is exposed to things that are contaminated such as leashes, collars, water bowls, or clothing, the puppy is at risk of catching this disease.

This disease can damage the stomach and the small intestine and can cause the puppy not to be able to absorb nutrients or it can cause problems in the gut. Sometimes, the infected puppy can get heart disease because of this disease.

Signs and symptoms of Parvo include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Blood in stool
  • Vomiting
  • Lack of energy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Dehydration
  • Change in behavior
  • Fever

Diagnosis and Treatment

The vet will look at the signs that your dog is having and will order blood work or an ELISA test to see the antigens in your dog’s body.

There is no cure for parvo, but your vet will do its best to treat the symptoms that the disease causes such as diarrhea, vomiting, and other symptoms. Make sure that you give your dog plenty of water and nutritional food.

Since this disease weakens the immune system in some dogs, your vet might give you antibiotics or other medication to help to fight other infections.

This disease can be fatal but if your puppy can last four days through the disease, chances are that it will recover but it depends on how severe the sickness is.


Parvo is a preventable virus and puppies, and dogs should get their parvo vaccinations. It is especially important for female dogs that are breeding to get their full vaccination before the breeding because the puppies need the mother’s antibodies when they are firsts born.

Never let your puppy around other dogs unless your dog is fully vaccinated and make sure that all of the dogs that are in your home are also fully vaccinated.

Stay away from places such as kennels, dog parks, and other socialization environments until your dog is fully vaccinated because this is a very contagious disease.


3. Canine Parainfluenza

The Canine Parainfluenza virus will hurt dogs that are younger or those that have other sicknesses or diseases. This disease is a disease that is very contagious and is a ribonucleic acid virus. This virus will cause your dog to have respiratory sicknesses such a CIRD or Kennel Cough.

This is spread by dogs being in places such as put in a kennel, at a dog park, or other places where your dog might be in social situations.

Once your dog is exposed, it can take up to 10 days for the infection to set in. Dogs with CPIV might not have symptoms and can therefore spread this disease without knowing it.

Parainfluenza Virus Infection in Dogs
Parainfluenza Virus Infection in Dogs. Credit of

Some symptoms of this sickness include:

  • Coughing
  • Fever
  • Runny nose
  • Bloody nose
  • Loss of energy
  • Loss of appetite

Diagnosis and Treatment

This disease is one that can come with no signs or symptoms. If your dog develops a cough that is dry or accompanied by a fever, or if the cough lasts for more than seven days, chances are that this is a sign and will be diagnosed as Parainfluenza. Your vet should do a thorough examination of your dog and will test different fluids to rule out other sicknesses.

If necessary, your dog might require an MRI or a CT scan to find out what sickness they have.

If a dog comes that already has a bacterial or viral infection, chances are that the dog will experience harsher symptoms.

This disease will cause problems such as:

  • Immune system problems.
  • Loss of Cilia
  • Ciliated Epithelium.

A dog that already has an immunosuppressed system might get pneumonia or die from this sickness.

Here are some great treatment practices to keep your dog from catching Parainfluenza:

  • Feed your dog a healthy diet.
  • Keep your dog groomed and keep good hygiene.
  • Make sure they are not around sick dogs.
  • Give antibiotics for other sicknesses.
  • Use pretreatment with bronchodilators.
  • Aerosocialization treatments.
  • Cough medicine if your dog has a persistent cough.


To prevent the spread of Parainfluenza, getting the CPIV vaccination will help. This is given through the nose, and it will cause possible sneezing, coughing and a runny nose.

Vaccinating against this pathogen can help to keep the dogs from spreading this disease and help to keep their immune. This will stop the spread of the agent and will help to halt the spread of the disease.

The CPIV vaccine will help to protect your dog from Parainfluenza and will help the body to adapt to the agent. This is given through the nose and as it goes into the body, it will trigger the mucosal and systemic response and make the immune system stronger.

The only problem with giving this vaccination is that if the dog sneezes once it is given, it can cause a loss of the vaccination.

This vaccine should be given every 2 to 4 weeks until the puppy is 16 weeks old and if given to an adult dog, 1 to 2 doses every 2 to 4 weeks.

References: Parainfluenza Virus Infection in Dogs

4. Canine Distemper

Canine Distemper
Canine Distemper

Canine Distemper is a viral infection that is common in young puppies. It is very contagious and affects the respiratory, central nervous system, gastrointestinal, skin, and immune systems.

It can take up to 14 days for symptoms to show up after the dog or puppy has been exposed to this virus. Animals can pick up this disease by an infected dog coughing, sneezing, or eating out of water or food bowls from a contaminated dog. Your dog can also pick up the disease by being around a dog that is infected.

Dogs are most vulnerable to this disease if they have not had their vaccination for Distemper.

Signs and symptoms of Distemper include:

  • Fever
  • Sores on the skin
  • The footpads getting thick
  • Coughing
  • Hard to breathe
  • Runny eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Tilting head
  • Going in circles
  • Acting like it is chewing gum
  • Muscle twitching
  • Paralysis
  • Involuntary eye movements
  • Seizures

The symptoms are often mistaken for other sicknesses and your dog can have mild or severe cases that can last up to 10 days.

Diagnosis and Treatment

If your dog shows any signs of Distemper, you should see your vet right away. You need to take your dog in if you don’t know if it has been vaccinated or not.

Your vet will look at your dog and will see what signs they are showing. If necessary, your vet might need to run tests such as blood work, spinal tap or take a biopsy of the footpad.

There is no treatment for Distemper, but your vet might give your dog treatments such as:

  • IV nutrition
  • Pain relievers
  • Fever reducers
  • Antibiotics
  • Medicine for seizures
  • Hospitalization
  • Immune medications
  • Anti-inflammatories
  • Steroids


You can prevent Distemper in your dogs by getting them vaccinated. A puppy can get their first vaccination when they are six weeks old. Avoid being around other dogs if your dog is not vaccinated for this disease.

References: Distemper in Dogs

5. Canine Influenza

canine influenza

Canine Influenza is also called dog flu. If your dog gets dog flu, most of the time this is something that will cause your dog to become sick but will not be fatal to your dog.

Dog flu is a respiratory infectious disease that happens because of the Influenza A virus. This is the same kind of flu that people get.

Dogs can spread this kind of flu through respiratory secretions that go into the air because your dog barks, sneezes, or coughs. It can also get on objects such as collars, bowls, and surfaces. If your dog has been in a kennel that has been exposed, chances are that your dog might get this sickness as well.

This sickness can also be spread at dog parks, grooming places, and anywhere that your dog is socializing with other canines.


Symptoms of the dog flu include:

  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Runny eyes
  • Fever
  • Loss of energy
  • Breathing problems

Even though most cases are mild, your dog can develop pneumonia if not treated.

Diagnosis and Treatments

Once your dog is exposed to the dog flu, it will take about 4 days for the symptoms to begin. The dog will be contagious for up to 26 days after exposure.

Dogs that come in contact with the dog flu will more than likely get the sickness.

If your dog is sick with the dog flu, it needs to be taken to the vet. There is no cure for this sickness, but you can use supportive care, fluids, medication, and rest to keep your dog comfortable.

If your dog has been exposed to the dog flu, it needs to be quarantined by other dogs because it is very contagious.


The best way to prevent your dog from getting dog flu is to keep them out of places where the dog flu has been reported. If you have been around exposed dogs, make sure to watch your hands, arms, and your clothes before touching your own dog.

There are vaccinations for the H3N8 and H3N2 influenza. If you have a dog that is going to be exposed to a kennel or one that you socialize a lot with, this vaccine is recommended.

6. Canine Hepatitis

Infectious Canine Hepatitis in Dogs
Infectious Canine Hepatitis in Dogs

Canine Hepatitis is a disease that can show up 4-9 days after the dog has been exposed. This infection affects the blood vessels, kidneys, lungs, spleen, and more.

Your dog can catch Canine Hepatitis by ingesting the feces or urine of an infected dog or by getting the saliva of an infected dog on them such as through cough or sneezing.

Signs and symptoms of Canine Hepatitis include:

  • Fever
  • Tonsils that are swollen
  • Swollen head
  • Swollen trunk
  • Runny nose
  • Runny eyes
  • Pink Eye
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dehydration
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal Pain

Diagnosis and Treatment

A vet might need to run blood work in order to know if your dog has Canine Hepatitis because it has the same symptoms as other diseases. Your vet might test the liver enzymes in order to diagnose your dog and may do blood work or x-rays if needed.

Depending on how severe the hepatitis is depending on how the vet will treat your dog. Some treatments can include:

  • IV medications
  • IV fluids
  • Supportive care
  • Hospitalization
  • Medications


Even though Canine Hepatitis is not curable, your dog can be free of this sickness by getting vaccinated against it.

Your dog can get vaccinated as early as 6 weeks of age. Avoid other dogs until your puppy is fully vaccinated.

References: Infectious Canine Hepatitis in Dogs

7. Rabies

Canine Rabies
Canine Rabies

Rabies is a disease that is very contagious. This is a virus that can be passed from any warm-blooded animal to another animal through scratches or bites.

This disease can come in phases and if your dog gets bit or scratched and you notice that their behavior changes, get help immediately.

Signs and symptoms of rabies:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Dog eating wood or stones
  • Dog eating dirt
  • Paralysis
  • Dehydration
  • Seizures
  • Salivating
  • Face distortion
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Looks like it has something in its throat
  • Coma
  • Death

Diagnosis and Treatment

If your dog was bitten or scratched by a wild animal or an infected animal, your vet will be able to know if your dog has rabies. Make sure you take your dog to the vet immediately if they have a sudden change of behavior.

There is no treatment available for rabies and it will more than likely lead to death.


You can prevent your dog from getting rabies by taking your dog to get the rabies vaccination and keeping the shots up to date.

Do not allow your dog to be around wildlife, even if the wildlife is dead.

If your dog gets bit and you get the rabies vaccination before the virus goes into the nervous system, chances are that the virus will work, and the dog will be saved.

8. Lyme Disease

Lyme Disease in Dogs

Lyme Disease or Lyme borreliosis is an illness that is a bacterial illness. This is a disease that is spread to dogs through tick bites. When a tick bites a dog and is infected, the infection can travel to the bloodstream of the dog, and then the bacterial will go to different parts of the body.

This bacterium can affect organs, joints, and other parts of the body.

Signs and symptoms of Lyme Disease:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Loss of energy
  • Stiffness
  • Pain
  • Joint swelling
  • Fever

Diagnosis and Treatment

The vet will look for physical signs and then will do two blood tests, a C6 Test, and a Quant C6 Test to check for antibodies.

The vet will then treat your dog with antibiotics for up to a month. If the infection lasts too long, then the dog might need other medication and therapies in order to heal.


You can prevent your dog from getting Lyme disease by making sure to check your dog for ticks after it goes outside, remove the ticks if you find one, use flea and tick medication when you go outside, keep your grass cut, and most importantly, get your dog vaccinated against Lyme disease.

9. Heartworm

heartworm in dachshunds

Heartworm is a parasite that infects Dachshunds and other animals. If it is not treated it can cause death. Heartworms are spread from animal to animal and by mosquitos that bite the dogs. If a dog is a bit by an infected mosquito, the infected larvae go into the animal and make its blood a meal.

Within six months, the larvae will turn into adult heartworms, and they will go throughout the dog’s blood vessels and the lungs. They can get more than 14 inches long and cause the heart to stop pumping normally or cause the lungs to fail.

Signs and symptoms of having heartworm disease are:

  • Fully developed worms in the lungs or heart.
  • Loss of energy.
  • Problems breathing.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Breathing rapidly after mild exercise.

Diagnosis and Treatment

You can know if your dog has heartworm by getting a blood test done at the vet. It can take less than 6 months for your dog to be infected. Getting bloodwork can test all adult female heartworms or if your dog has been exposed to heartworms.

Your vet might also want to do a chest x-ray, blood work, or echocardiogram in order to diagnose your dog with heartworm.

It is better to prevent heartworm than having to treat it but if your dog becomes infected with heartworms, there are treatments that are available to get rid of them. But it is important to catch this early because if your dog has serious illnesses or is in bad health when they get heartworms, they can die.

The vet can give you certain medications but may require your dog to stay hospitalized during some of the treatments. In some cases, surgery might be required to remove the heartworms.

Treatments include different kinds of medication.


Heartworm is 100% treatable and dogs can start getting heartworm treatments as soon as 6 months of age. They should be tested often to make sure that they are not exposed to heartworms. This should be done once a year.

Treatments that will work to prevent your dog from getting heartworm come in the form of chewable, topical liquids, or injections. These are generally given every 6 months to prevent heartworms.

10. Canine Brucellosis

Canine Brucellosis

Brucellosis is a bacterial infection that is caused by the bacterium called Brucella canis. This is a disease that is very contagious among dogs.

This disease will produce and will cause an infection in the dog’s reproductive system and is the same as a sexually transmitted disease.

This infection will cause dogs to become infertile or will cause the dog to abort its babies. This is a normal disease in dogs that are sexually active in adulthood.

This disease will affect the dog’s tissues, brain, kidneys, eyes, and intervertebral disks.

Signs and symptoms of Brucellosis include:

  • Enlarged scrotum
  • Enlarged testicle
  • Skin rash around the scrotum area.
  • Infertile dogs.
  • Shrunken testicles
  • Difficulty getting pregnant
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Stillborn or aborted puppies
  • Puppies that die a few days after birth.
  • Enlarged lymph nodes.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Canine Brucellosis

The vet will be able to diagnosis brucellosis by doing a blood test called a RAST or a rapid slide agglutination test. This can be found up to four weeks after the dog is infected with the disease.

It is often that a dog will get a false positive with this test and it should follow up with an AGID or an agar gel immunodiffusion test which can identify if the infection is really there.

Antibiotics can often treat this bacterium and have helped to control the bacteria for the life of the dog.

In some cases, the dog will need to be surgically sterilized so that they do not spread the disease.

Some common medications used to treat this disease include:

  • Minocycline
  • Doxycycline
  • Enrofloxacin

Prevention Canine Brucellosis

There is a vaccination for Brucellosis called R851 and it should be given to dogs between the ages of four months and one year of age.

This vaccination has been said to help to prevent the spread of brucellosis and to help dogs be able to birth their puppies without their body aborting them.

Common Diseases that Cannot Be Prevented with a Vaccine

Some dogs are prone to diseases that can and cannot be prevented with a vaccine. These diseases are not able to be prevented with a vaccine.

11. Intervertebral Disc Disease

intervertebral disk disease
Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) in Dachshunds

Intervertebral Disk Disease or IVDD is one that the Dachshund is prone to getting because of its long spine. This disease causes the disks and the vertebra to become brittle and weak and it can cause the disks to slip or to break.

This is a very painful disease and can cause the dog to have damage to their spine and sometimes the dog can even become paralyzed because of this disease.

Signs and symptoms of this disease can include:

  • Trouble walking.
  • Unable to move legs.
  • Loss of bowel and bladder control.
  • Crying when touched.
  • Arched back.
  • Crying when picked up.
  • Change in the mood.
  • Swollen abdomen.
  • Loss of appetite.

Diagnosis and Treatment of IVDD

IVDD has to be diagnosed with an x-ray and cannot be diagnosed with a blood test. Your vet might also ask for you to get an MRI on your dog if it is having trouble.

This is a disease that is often diagnosed incorrectly and if the dog seems to have pain, arthritis-like symptoms, or stomach problems, it is important to ask your vet to test for IVDD.

If this disease is not caught soon, it can cause the dog to have more risk, have a herniation, and can even cause the dog to be paralyzed.

IVDD can be treated with both surgical and prescription medications. Some non-surgical treatments can be included such as therapy or behavioral help.

Some of the treatments include:

  • Pain medications
  • Avoiding hard activities.
  • Physical therapy.
  • Short toilet breaks.
  • Mental stimulation.
  • Dietary care.
  • Oxygen
  • IV fluids

Prevention of IVDD

IVDD can be prevented by:

  • Don’t let your dog jump up and down and jump from furniture to the ground.
  • Help your dog into places that are too high for them.
  • Support the dog from the rear and front when you carry it so that it does not put stress on the spine.
  • Give your dog plenty of exercises to keep the muscles and bones strong.
  • Feed your dog a healthy diet.
  • There are now genetic tests that can be used to determine if your dog is predisposed to developing IVDD.

12. Chondrodysplasia

Chondrodysplasia is a bone and cartilage disorder. Chondrodysplasia is when the teeth in the jaw become overcrowded. This can happen when food becomes trapped in the teeth, there is calcification of the teeth which leads to swelling of the gums, and when there is a buildup of plaque.

This is a known disease in Dachshunds because of their short bodies, it often is a characteristic of this breed.

Signs and symptoms of this disease include:

  • Crooked teeth.
  • Short upper jaw
  • Underbite
  • Bowed front legs
  • Crooked spine
  • Breathing problems

Diagnosis and Treatment of Chondrodysplasia

Puppies that are born with deformities will need to have an x-ray and will be diagnosed with this disease. Chances are that the dog will have swelling or other abnormalities when the doctor examines the puppy.

This is a genetic disorder and there are no treatments for this but there is prevention.

Prevention of Chondrodysplasia

In order to prevent more health problems, it is important that you keep your dog’s teeth brushed. Since the teeth will be overcrowded due to the jaw being smaller, this can cause more periodontal disease if not prevented.

If your dog will not let you brush its teeth, go somewhere, and get its teeth professionally cleaned.

Again, there is a genetic test that can be used to determine if your Dachshund is predisposed to developing chondrodysplasia. Breeders are beginning to use DNA testing for specific diseases to evaluate their breeding stock.

13. Canine Osteochondrodysplasia

Canine Chondrodysplasia
Canine Chondrodysplasia

This is also called skeletal dwarfism and is a problem that can cause arthritis, arthrosis, back pain, retinal dysplasia, and other problem for your dog.

This is a disease that the Dachshund is prone to because of its shorter legs and short muzzles.

Sometimes this disorder makes it harder for that breed of dog to breed. This is a genetic disorder that causes the cartilage and the bones to grow at a slower rate and this causes the dog to be a dwarf or to have deformities.

Osteochondrodysplasia affects the four bones in the legs but sometimes it only affects two or three of the leg bones.

Signs and symptoms of Osteochondrodysplasia include:

  • Shorter legs.
  • Larger head.
  • Longer body.
  • Small nose.
  • Eyes that bulge.
  • Crooked teeth or an underbite.
  • Sticking the tongue out for no reason.
  • Bones that are deformed.
  • Slower growth for the breed.
  • Shorter bones.
  • Inflammation.
  • Bowed legs.
  • Bumping into things.
  • Snoring.

Diagnosis and Treatment

It is easy for the vet to diagnose a dog with this disorder because it is usually easy to see. The vet should do a normal physical and do blood work.

Sometimes the vet will require CT scans, MRIs, or x-rays.

There are different types of treatments that can be done for Osteochondrodysplasia but sometimes they will not do anything if the dog breaths are okay. Some of the treatments include:

  • Surgery (which is very painful and takes a long time to heal).
  • Medication such as NSAIDs, fentanyl, glucosamine, tramadol, or meloxicam.
  • Hormone replacement.


There is no real prevention for this disease because it is a genetic disorder. When you purchase a Dachshund, find out the parent’s medical history before making a decision.

14. Cushing’s Disease

Cushing Syndrome (Hyperadrenocorticism)
Hyperadrenocorticism in Dachshund

Cushing’s Disease or Hyperadrenocorticism is one that causes the adrenal glands to make too much cortisone, a hormone in the body.

This can happen at a slow rate and is sometimes thought to be aging symptoms. Sometimes this disease is caused when there is a tumor in the pituitary gland.

Signs and symptoms of Cushing’s Disease include:

  • Gaining weight.
  • Excessive urination.
  • Drinking more than normal.
  • Eating more than normal.
  • Changing in shape

Diagnosis and Treatment of Cushing’s Disease

This is a disease that is common in middle-aged dogs and of certain breeds such as the Dachshund.

If your vet thinks that your dog might have Cushing’s, he or she will do a blood test to measure the cortisol level in its body. The vet might also check the liver enzymes, ALKP.

Since this disease often has a false positive, the vet should take blood again if anything is elevated and do an ACTH stimulation test to check the adrenal gland.

Cushing’s disease is very treatable, and your dog will be given a pill once or twice daily that it will take orally. It will do this until the body is corrected and should be reevaluated every four months.

If the dog is in the later stages of the disease, it might need to have radiation to get rid of the tumor that is causing the disease.

Prevention of Cushing’s Disease

This disease is caused by a tumor and there is no prevention.

15. Dachshund Obesity

dachshund obesity
Dachshund Obesity

One common disease in Dachshund dogs is obesity. This is common because of the shape of the dog and can be very dangerous for your dog.

Since the Dachshund is prone to back disorders, gaining too much weight can put added stress on the spine. This can also cause other problems such as osteoarthritis, arthritis, and more.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Obesity

Your vet should weigh your Dachshund at each appointment to make sure that your dog is in normal weight.

If your dog is overweight, ask the vet to give you a good feeding schedule so that your dog will keep the right amount of weight gain.

Prevention of Obesity

You can prevent your Dachshund from getting overweight by feeding it healthy foods, not overfeeding your dog, and not giving your dog too many extra treats or snacks.

It is also important that you give your dog plenty of exercise and make sure that it is getting physical activity to keep it within the normal weight limit.

16. Canine Cancer

cancer in dachshunds

Cancer is a disease that is often found in Dachshund dogs. This breed has a much higher risk of getting cancer in the anal sacs, fat cells, tumors, squamous cell carcinoma, and skin cancer.

The Dachshund often gets cancer such as liposarcoma and mammary gland cancer.

Diagnosis and Treatments of Cancer

If your dog seems to be sick or it seems to have something wrong and you aren’t sure why to take it to the vet to get a diagnosis. If you see any strange lumps or abnormalities on the skin, let your vet check out your dog.

The vet might need to run blood tests or do x-rays to find out if your dog has any kind of cancer.

Cancer can be treated with different kinds of medication or radiation if necessary.

Prevention of Cancer

Cancer is not something that can be prevented but if you detect anything abnormal, catching cancer early is the best way to prevent it from spreading or getting worse.

17. Degenerative Mitral Valve Disease

Degenerative Mitral Valve Disease or DMVD is an issue that many Dachshunds dogs face. This usually happens between the ages of 7 and 10 years of age.

Diagnosis and Treatments

The easiest way to catch the disease is to have your vet do a checkup on your dog. Your vet can hear if there is a problem or something different in the sound of the heart.

If your dog is diagnosed with this disease, it will be assessed, and the vet will see if it is severe or mild.

Different ways of diagnosing include:

  • Pathophysiology
  • Thoracic Radiography
  • Electrocardiography
  • Echocardiography

Your doctor will monitor the DMVD and make sure that it doesn’t lead to heart failure for your dog.

There are two classifications of DMVD:

  • Slowly progressive disease
  • Rapidly progressive disease

Dogs that are high risk can have heart failure and this can lead to death.

Some treatments include:

  • ACE inhibitors
  • Therapy
  • Hospitalizations
  • Diuretics
  • Inodilators
  • Aldosterone Antagonists


There is no prevention to stop DMVD, but the best thing is to have your dog checked regularly and to get medication and therapy needed to prevent the dog from getting worse.

18. Lafora Disease

Lafora Disease in Wirehaired Dachshunds
Lafora Disease in Wirehaired Dachshund

This is a genetic disease that often affects Dachshund breeds. This is an aggressive form of canine epilepsy, and it causes neurological changes in the dog as time goes on.

This disease can lead to blindness, loss of balance, seizures, and even dog dementia. This is a very rare disease and is usually found in dogs that are five years or older.

Signs and symptoms of Lafora Disease include:

  • Jerking
  • Shuddering
  • Interruptions of the dog’s sleep.
  • Seizures
  • Behaviors that show anxiety
  • Blindness
  • Loss of balance
  • The dog hallucinating
  • Panicking often
  • Dementia

Diagnosis and Treatment

Your vet will run tests to find out if your dog has Lafora Disease. Your vet might suggest a DNA test because Lafora can be found in the genes of your dog.

There are different treatments that you can get for your dog if they are diagnosed with Lafora Disease such as:

  • Eating healthy and a low glycemic diet.
  • Medications that control seizures.
  • Lessen the sun exposure.
  • Do not have bright lights or flashing lights around your dog.
  • Balancing exercises.


Even though there is no cure because this is a genetic disease, you can slow down the symptoms that your Dachshund might experience. This is a rare disease, but it most often affects the Dachshund breed between 5 and 7 years of age.

19. Portosystemic Shunt

iver shunt in dachshund
Portosystemic Shunt in Dachshund

Portosystemic Shunt or PSS is a liver disorder that is known in the Dachshund breed. This is a hereditary condition, and it happens when the liver is not able to remove the toxins from the blood.

Diagnosis and Treatment

The vet should run blood tests and check the liver enzymes to find out if your dog has PSS.

There are different medications that can be used to treat this disease but sometimes surgery is needed. It is important to keep your dog on a special diet if diagnosed with PSS.


This is a hereditary disease and cannot be prevented.

Other Known Dachshund Diseases that Cannot Be Cured with Vaccine

There are other diseases that the Dachshund breed are prone to such as:

  • Autoimmune disorders.
  • Immune-Mediated Thrombocytopenia.
  • Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis or HE
  • Stomach Issues
  • Dry Eyes or Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca.
  • Glaucoma

20. Dog Bloat

Bloat is a Gastric Dilation Volvulus or GDV which is a disease that can kill your dog if it is not treated right away.

This disease often comes to dogs that have a deep chest and happens when the dog takes in gasses and the gasses are not released in the body.

GDV can happen if a dog eats or drinks too fast or if the dog exercises too much after eating or drinking. When the dog does this, the gasses get trapped inside the stomach and it causes the stomach to distend or to bloat.

Bloating will then cause the stomach to move even a full 360 degrees, and this is very dangerous for the dog. This can sometimes be seen when you look at your dog.

Signs and symptoms of bloat include:

  • Not able to rest.
  • The abdomen is distended.
  • Panting more than normal.
  • Salivating more than normal.
  • Gums that are pale in color.
  • Eyes that become watery or glassy.
  • Coughing.
  • Retching.
  • Arrhythmia.
  • Distress
  • Pacing.
  • Breathing hard.
  • Unable to stand.

Diagnosis and Treatment

If your dog goes to the vet and has a swollen abdomen, the vet will run a test because it is important to catch bloat immediately to make sure that your dog will survive.

However severe the bloat is will depend on the treatment that is needed. Sometimes, the vet will have to get the gas off of the stomach and most of the time medication can be given instead of surgery, but sometimes surgery is needed.

If the stomach becomes twisted, surgery will be needed but the vet will make sure that this is necessary before doing the surgery.


You can prevent bloat by doing things such as:

  • Feeding the dog smaller meals.
  • Not using a raised food bowl.
  • Not giving your dog too much water at one time.
  • Do not take your dog out to exercise after eating or drinking.

READ MORE: Vomiting in Dachshunds: Possible Causes, Treatments, and Preventatives

21. Kennel Cough

kennel cough

Kennel Cough is a respiratory disease that dogs can catch from other dogs. It is very contagious and is also known as Tracheobronchitis. When dogs are in close quarters of each other such as being housed at a kennel, at obedience school, or at a dog park, this disease can spread fast.

With this disease, your dog could cough a cough that sounds bad, but in some dogs, it is not very harmful, and the dog will recover in a few weeks but can last even up to 20 days.

In dogs that are older or dogs that already have health issues, this disease can be a lot worse.

Signs of Kennel Cough include:

  • Tiredness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Runny nose
  • Heaving
  • Retching
  • Coughing

Diagnosis and Treatment

Your vet will diagnose your dog if it has a bad cough to make sure that it is nothing more serious than Kennel Cough.

If your dog is coughing a lot, do not use a collar because the trachea can be sensitive and can cause there to be coughing spasms that will make your dog uncomfortable or even cause tracheal damage.

To treat Kennel Cough, most vets will prescribe an antibiotic and possibly some cough medicine. Most dogs will recover on their own within a few weeks of catching Kennel Cough.


You can prevent Kennel Cough by making sure that you are not in the same place as an infected dog has been and if your dog has Kennel Cough, make sure to keep your dog away from other animals until it is completely better.

Some of the vaccinations such as the Distemper and Parainfluenza vaccination can help to reduce the risks of getting Kennel Cough even though there is no vaccination just for this sickness.

22. Dog Dry Heaving

Heaving can happen for different reasons including your dog having a cold, having parasites, infection, allergies, liver problems, eating something poisonous or having bloat.

If your dog is heaving after falling or getting a head injury, this can be a serious sign and you should get your dog to the vet right away.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Your vet will determine what is wrong with your dog if it is excessively heaving. Make sure that if your dog was injured and is heaving that you get vet care immediately.

If you think that your dog ingested something poisonous, go to the vet right away and call the animal poison control line to get immediate assistance.


Heaving is something that might not be preventable but pay attention to any changes in your dog’s behavior or if they begin to lack energy. Notice any subtle changes that come along with heaving and get vet care right away.

Final Thoughts

Having a Dachshund in your home is like having a child in your home. You know their little idiosyncrasies and their daily habits. When something seems wrong or off with your Doxie, start making notes to try and pinpoint what is going on. If it seems serious enough, make an appointment with your veterinarian. Emergency situations where your dog is in dire condition and severely lethargic will require an emergency vet clinic to stabilize them until your regular veterinarian can see your Dachshund.

Preventative care is always important. Make sure your Dachshund has age-appropriate vaccinations, is eating a quality kibble with the right balance of vitamins and minerals, and is on a dietary supplement to help boost their immune system. You also want to keep them away from situations where they would be exposed to possible communicable diseases.

Routine veterinarian exams and complete blood counts will help catch any illnesses or diseases that may be lurking but not showing serious symptoms. Puppy proof your home and keep any cleaning products, poisons, plants, and hazardous foodstuffs out of reach.

You do not want your dog getting into something that can cause harm or even death. If you think your dog has gotten into something that can be harmful, call your vet immediately. Emergency vet clinics are your next option if your vet is closed and you can always call the Animal Poison Control hotline at 888-426-4435 for further assistance.

Dachshunds are a pretty healthy breed overall, provided your Doxie has been well-bred and comes from a reputable breeder. Maintain their good health by providing quality care that will see them well into their senior years. With great care, I have had many Dachshunds live to 16 or 17 years.

Don’t you want your best friend to be with you for as long as possible, too? Invest in their care and well-being, that is the easiest way to ensure they stay healthy.

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