If you have a Dachshund, you already know how special the dogs are. But did you know that dachshunds have their very own holiday? It’s never too early to plan, so keep reading for 10 facts about National Dachshund Day.
Top 10 Facts About National Dachshund Day
1. National Dachshund Day is June 21st
Choosing June 21st as National Dachshund Day wasn’t random. That date (give or take a day) is the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. The longest day is the perfect time to celebrate the dachshund’s l-o-n-g body. The summer solstice can vary by a day or two, but it looks like National Dachshund Day is locked into that date. The origins of the holiday are unknown.
Dachshunds are loved worldwide, so where does that leave people in the Southern Hemisphere, where June 21st is the shortest day? If you live south of the equator, just think of the dachshund’s short little legs!
2. National Dachshund Day is Not a Federal Holiday (Yet)
We hate to break it to you, but no country observes National Dachshund Day as a federal holiday. (Sigh.) Dachshunds are just spunky enough that if they would write, they’d start an international petition to change that!
It’s still a fun day to pamper your dog and treat them like a king or queen. But let’s face it, do dachshunds really need a reason to feel special? These small dogs have big personalities.
3. National Dachshund Day is NOT the Same as National Hot Dog Day
It’s an easy mistake to make, right? Dachshunds have all sorts of nicknames in the English language, including the hot dog, sausage dog, and wiener dog.
National Hot Dog is a day to appreciate the edible kind, not your pup. Mark your calendar because this holiday is observed on the third Wednesday in July in the U.S. There are hot dog eating contests throughout the country, and some restaurants give away free hot dogs that day. And it’s a great excuse to dress your dachshund up in a hot dog costume and parade around the block.
4. Dachshunds Have the Coolest Names
A survey published by The Scotsman revealed that the most popular dachshund name in the UK is Rollo. Other top contenders include Peggy, Coco, Minnie, Snoop, Digby, Peggy, and Frank. Slinky is another popular name in honor of the slinky-style dog toy from Toy Story. Dachshunds are adorable no matter what you name them.
5. Two Dachshunds (Almost) Caused an International Crisis
Dachshunds are native to Germany, and it’s no surprise that the country’s last emperor owned a pair. Kaiser Wilhelm II’s dachshund duo were named Wadl and Hexl. The two showed off their strong prey drive when they killed a pet golden pheasant owned by the Archduke of Austria-Hungary, Franz Ferdinand.
6. Dachshunds Were Originally Hunting Dogs
We can trace the breed back to the 1600s when dachshunds helped their German owners hunt for badger pelts. As a true product of world-famous German engineering, nothing about the body of a Dachshund is a mistake.
From the powerful jaws to the long low body and the astonishingly loud bark, these dogs were bred to chase badgers out of their underground burrows. Fun fact: Dachshund is German for “badger hound” or “badger dog.”
7. Dachshunds Are One of the First Breeds to Achieve AKC Registration
Dachshunds were originally loved for their hunting abilities. But owners eventually realized that their affectionate nature, low shedding, spunkiness, and cute looks made them excellent companions.
By the 1800s, dachshunds were calling greater Europe and the U.S. home. The AKC acknowledged the breed in 1885, just one year after the organization was founded.
8. Dachshunds Make for Some Interesting Mixed Breeds
Have you heard of a chiweenie? That’s a pup with one miniature dachshund parent and one chihuahua parent. Other dachshunds mixed breeds include the dorkie (Yorkshire terrier), the daug (pug), and the bulldach (bulldog).
Some breeders intentionally cross dachshunds with other breeds. Other mixed breed pups are the product of “love matches” of two dogs that fell in love. Some sources credit the late Queen Elizabeth and her sister Princess Margaret with creating dorgis. The Queen’s corgi had an amorous liaison with the Princess’s dachshund, and a designer mixed breed was born.
9. The Origins of the Breed Are Murky
While we know that dachshunds were around in the 1600s, we don’t know for certain how the breed originated. It’s thought that today’s dachshunds are the result of crossbreeding miniature French pointers and German pinschers. Another theory is that there is some bloodhound and Bassett hound ancestry.
We know today’s wire-haired dachshunds came about after smooth-coated dachshunds were bred with terriers in the late 1800s. Wire-haired dachshunds have a somewhat mellower attitude than other dachshunds thanks to the terrier ancestry.
10. Dachshunds Come in Different Sizes
The AKC recognizes two sizes of dachshunds: standard and miniature. The average standard dachshund is around 9 inches tall and 25 pounds. A typical miniature is 6 inches tall and under 11 pounds. Dachshunds falling between these two sizes are informally called “Tweenies.”
Belgium’s Federation Cynologique Internationale—an international version of the AKC—recognizes three sizes of dachshunds: standard, miniature, and rabbit. European standard and miniature dachshunds are slightly larger than their U.S. counterparts. A European “rabbit” dachshund is similar in size to a U.S. miniature.
Do Dachshunds Make Good Pets?
Dachshunds might make a good pet if you want an affectionate dog with lower grooming and exercise needs. The breed is known for being alert and vocal—they are faithful watchdogs. Their long backs put them at risk for injuries. Dachshunds can undoubtedly run and play, but they shouldn’t be leaping off furniture or climbing a lot of stairs.
How Long Do Dachshunds Live?
Dachshunds require a big commitment from their owners. A dachshund can live 15 years or more with the proper care and diet. That’s a decade and a half of incomparable loyalty and devotion.
National Dachshund Day is June 21st, but the origins of the holiday are unknown. It’s a special day to celebrate the breed and its heritage. Dachshunds were originally used as hunting dogs in Germany, and today they are popular house pets throughout Europe and the U.S.
- See also: National Beagle Day