hoond] "badger hunter"
Records of this breed date back
to the 15th century. It was originally bred in
Germany for the purpose of hunting and killing
badgers (dachs=badger; hund=dog).
The long body and short legs were bred into the
breed so the dog could follow the badger into its
burrow; its legs are actually quite powerful,
since it was often necessary for early dachshunds
to dig the badger out of its burrow. Centuries of
breeding dachshunds for hunting and killing such
a dangerous animal as a badger makes today's
dachshunds amazingly fearless for their size.
The name Dachshund
became a breed designation in the early 17th
century, with smooth and longhaired coat
varieties; wirehairs were added as a distinct
variety in 1890. American Kennel Club
registrations began in 1885.
Dachshunds come in two
recognized sizes. The standard stands 14-18
inches high and weighs 16-32 pounds. Miniature
dachshunds are no more than 14 inches high and
weigh less than 11 pounds.
The dachshund is a lovable and
playful dog. It can adapt to most living
environments, and is especially well suited for
apartment dwellers. Although it can be an ideal
pet for children, the dachshund can easily take
control of a household if not given specific and
very firm boundaries and rules to follow. It is a
curious and clever dog, traits which can lead
untrained dachshunds to be rather mischievous
and, sometimes, destructive.
American Kennel Club www.akc.org/breeds/dachshund/
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