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Red Dapple Dachshund: Dog Breed Info, Pictures, Traits, Facts

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

red dapple dachsund puppy

Height: 8–9 inches
Weight: 11–32 pounds
Lifespan: 12–15 years
Colors: Red, cream, & brown spots (Dapple)
Suitable for: Companionship to singles or seniors; families with older kids
Temperament: Feisty, willful, vocal, alert

If you are ready to learn more about this adorable pup, or you are thinking about adopting a member of this family, this is an article you are going to want to read. The Red Dapple Dachshund, affectionately known as the hot dog or Dapple Doxie, is a feisty little ankle-biter with loyalty, playfulness, and spirit running through their veins. As part of the hound family, the Dapple Doxie is a Dachshund with a more speckled fur coat.

This low-to-the-ground warrior is a handful, although, with the right owner and the right training, they can be an excellent companion and a not to be underestimated guard dog. Originating in Germany 600 years ago, the Dachshund was employed as an eviction specialist for the local badger community.

With their short legs and slim body, this scrappy little pooch was good at their job. If you are unfamiliar with a badger, they are not an animal you would want to meet in a dark alley, yet the holes they dig themselves are just that. Nevertheless, that did not stop what we now call the “hot dog” from going in and unceremoniously kicking them out.

It is also thought that the Dachshund was brought to the United States during the World Wars when the Americans coined the term “Liberty dog” as a way to distance the pooch from its original origin.

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Red Dapple Dachshund Puppies

red dapple dachshund puppy
Image Credit: Liliya Kulianionak, Shutterstock


If you are planning to purchase any puppy from a breeder, it is imperative to do your due diligence on where the puppy is coming from. This is especially true if you are considering a Red Dapple Doxie. In general, deciding on a breeder should be more involved than whether they have a particular puppy for sale.


Researching the Red Dapple Dachshund breeder of your choice is always a good practice, however, once that is done there are other considerations you should keep in mind. First, you want to be able to get the health records for the Dame and Sire of the puppy. This will give you an idea if your pup will end up with any health concerns that are common to the breed.

Also, you want to keep an eye out for parents who have longer-than-average torsos or very short legs. Both of these physical features point to IVDD. This disease (Intervertebral Disc Disease) can be extremely painful and eventually cause paralysis.

Beyond health risks, you want to consider whether both parents are Dapple Dachshund. When both parents have this pattern, the puppy is known as Double Dachshund. Dogs that come from two parents that have this distinction, unfortunately, have genetic mutations that can cause serious health problems.

Sadly, as this particular dog pattern is rare with beautiful markings, some people continue to breed them, although it is hurting the overall Dachshund line.

Physical Traits of a Red Dapple Dachshund

The overall appearance of this breed is the first thing that people notice and fall in love with. That being said, there is a lot more to this little ankle-biter than initially meets the eye. First, let’s take a look at the different traits of Dapple Doxie.

Physical Traits

There are two different types of Red Dapple Dachshund: standard and miniature. The standard Dapple can weigh anywhere between 16 and 32 pounds, and they are typically between eight and nine inches tall. The mini Dapple, on the other hand, will only reach 5 or 6 inches tall and only weigh a whopping 11 pounds.

Both the standard and mini Red Dapple Dachshunds are considered smaller dogs that have short legs and long bodies. They have big floppy ears, soulful-looking eyes that are typically brown, and a wagging, slightly upturned tail. Although most Dachshunds have brown eyes (as mentioned), some have light blue eyes; but only if they have the dappling pattern on their face.

red dapple dachshund on back
Image Credit: Shane N. Cotee, Shutterstock

Coat and Fur

The Dapple Doxie comes in three different fur types. They can either have short fur, wire hair, or long hair. For the most part, the short smooth-haired coats are the more popular followed by the long silky fur coming in at a close second.

Red Dapple Dachshunds can have three colors in their fur, as well. They will be either black and tan, chocolate and tan, or red. Red Dapple Doxies are by far the rarest. It is also important to note, however, that the Dapple coat is a pattern, not a color.

The Dapple coat is a merle pattern, which is the contrasting lighter areas on a dark coat. The amount of ”spots”  on any given Dapple Doxie can vary greatly. In any given litter, for example, you could have one puppy that only has one small spot, while at the same time, have three more that have a stronger pattern.

The Red Dapple Dachshund has a brighter hewed base that appears red. Red dogs, in general, are the least common in the canine community; therefore, a red merle pattern is very unique.

How to Get a Dapple Doxie

For a puppy to be considered a Dapple Dachshund, one of their parents has to have the merle pattern. That being said, even if the parent only has one small dapple spot, they can still produce a well-polka-dotted puppy.

Although we mentioned it previously, two Dachshunds with the merle pattern will result in a Double Dapple puppy. It bears mentioning again, though, that while this breed is unique in its pattern, the genetic defects and quality of life for this animal borders on cruelty.Divider 3

Personality, Temperament & Intelligence of the Red Dapple Doxie 🧠

This powerful little pooch is an intelligent loyal and friendly companion. Originally bred as hunting dogs, the spunky little Red Dapple Doxie still maintain their fierceness and guard dog attitude. As far as intelligence is concerned, there is no shortage in the Dachshund.

Although the Red Dapple Dachshund is very loyal to their family, they have an independent and stubborn streak that requires a firm yet gentle hand to guide them. This breed can be very affectionate and attached to their owners; plus, they enjoy making you laugh with their antics.

That being said, while some dogs live to please, the Dachshund lives to protect. This attitude is helped by their booming bark which is not expected out of such a small pup. Even though we will get into the best training practices later, for now, let’s talk about the Red Dapple Dachshunds’ social standing.

Red Dapple Dachshund Dog Breed
Image Credit: Linnaea Mallette, PublicDomainPictures


The Red Dapple makes for a great watchdog, as they are not a fan of strangers. They tend to be snarky to the point of downright nippy toward strangers and will quickly become defensive around other dogs.

They can also be good with children, although, it is recommended not to leave them alone together. Even though this pooch is a loyal family pet, they do have sensitive backs that are easily hurt. They can bite if they are injured or feel the need to protect themselves.


The personality traits and temperament of any dog is going to differ based on their individual make-up. This is true for the Red Doxie, plus their genes, how they were handled as a puppy, and the general care and attention they are given. Not to mention, being the independent-minded pups that they are, they do develop their own quirks, as well.

In general, though, this sausage-shaped scoundrel is courageous yet affectionate, stubborn yet loyal, and friendly yet on guard. One thing that remains pretty consistent, however, is that these pups are energetic, happy, and playful the majority of the time.

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Things to Know When Owning a Red Dapple Dachshund

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

Unfortunately, one of the health concerns that plague the Dapple Doxie is their tendency to gain weight. Due to their short legs and long spines, excess weight can cause significant problems. This includes ruptured discs, hip pain, and joint issues. These painful issues will drastically decrease their mobility, thus making weight gain more easily achieved; a vicious cycle begins.

When it comes to their diet, the Red Dachshund should be provided with a well-balanced and nutritious meal. Take a look at some of the ingredients below:

  • High-quality proteins
  • Fibers
  • Probiotics
  • Prebiotics
  • Antioxidants
  • Glucosamine
  • Chondroitin
  • Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids
  • Fish oil
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E
  • Calcium
  • Healthy fats
  • Flaxseed oil
  • Sunflower oil
  • Amino acids

You want to provide as many quality ingredients as your budget will allow, however, staying away from foods that are high in unhealthy fats is key.

You may also want to consider foods that have supplements such as glucosamine and fish oils that can help with joint pain as your pup ages. These ingredients can also help slow the process of joint tissue deterioration.

Exercise 🐕

Dapple Dachshunds are naturally energetic and active canines. They require moderate daily exercise in order to stay fit and healthy. Generally speaking, two decent walks a day are sufficient to keep them fit and burn off any unwanted calories. Again, this goes back to the issue of carrying a few extra pounds.

It should also be noted that there has been a lot of debate about the correct amount of exercise for the Red Dapple Dachshund. Due to their higher likelihood of developing a deteriorating bone disease, many argue that excess exercise is not healthy.

On the other hand, many studies have shown that Dachshunds that have daily moderate exercise have better mobility, flexibility, and energy as they age. Be that as it may, this breed is not a candidate for rock climbing or any intense jumping that can hurt their backs.

Training 🦮

Although it may be somewhat obvious at this point, the Dachshund, whether a Red Dapple or not, is not the greatest choice for the first-time dog owner. Again, this is a loving affectionate dog, but their independent and stubborn attitude can make the struggle for dominance a challenge.

Nevertheless, as long as a firm yet gentle hand is used in their training, your Red Dapple Doxie will make a wonderful companion.  Training these dogs can be an uphill challenge that you should be ready for, however. It will take a lot of patience, consistency, and love to get it down correctly.

It is interesting to note that while the Dachshund has a lot of coverage and tenacity, they are also known to be somewhat sensitive. Due to that character trait, they respond better to positive reinforcement and award-based training. Also, the earlier the training is done, (especially socializing) the better their temperament will be as they grow.

Grooming ✂️

Grooming for a Red Dapple Doxie is pretty basic. It will depend on what type of coat they have, though. The short-haired Doxie only requires brushing once every week or so to keep their coat shiny and smooth. The wirehaired pup will require brushing a couple of times a week, while the long-haired Dachshund needs to be brushed daily in order to avoid matting.

None of the coats shed considerably, however, the long-haired Doxie is the most likely to shed. Besides their coat, you also want to have their nails clipped regularly, and their teeth looked after on a regular basis. Both of these are better started when they are puppies to keep the stress level for both pet and owner low.

Health & Conditions ❤️

As we have mentioned, Red Dapple Dachshunds are prone to bone diseases such as IVDD. In fact, one out of every four adults will develop this issue at some point during their life. Keeping your Red Doxie at a respectable weight is the best way to keep this issue at bay. Though we did mention it before, this is a very painful disease that can cause paralysis.

Besides that, the Dachshund breed is prone to some ear and eye issues. When it comes to the eyes, progressive retinal atrophy has been found in this breed along with less serious issues like chronic dry eyes.

Double Dapple Dachshunds, however, are prone to more serious eye and ear problems and defects. For example, if both parents carry the Merle gene, Double Dapple puppies can be born blind, with malformed or missing eyes. They can also be born deaf or with misshapen and missing ears.

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This low-riding Doxie is a spirited, fierce pooch. They are loyal, happy pets who are independent, playful, and energetic. With a firm and loving hand, they can be the companion of a lifetime.

If you are thinking about adopting or purchasing a Red Dapple Dachshund, keep in mind that these pups are going to require a lot of your time. You are going to need to have patience, and a lot of love to give. If you are ready for that commitment, you will have a four-legged friend for life.

Featured Image Credit: Liliya Kulianionak, Shutterstock

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