The Dachshund is a popular and beloved dog breed - and for good reason! More often than not, Dachshunds are happy, friendly dogs with lots of energy and a great love for their family. They are also generally healthy and often live long and active lives.
However, it is also well known that Dachshunds are prone to back problems and suffer from an increased risk of herniated discs.
This means that anyone who has the privilege of counting a dachshund among their family members may need to pay special attention to its sensitive back - and take preventive measures to avoid future problems. A Dachshund in good condition with well-developed muscles is less likely to sustain a herniated disc or other skeletal and musculoskeletal problems.
Back on Track's therapeutic textile technologies can provide a beneficial complement that improves the Dachshund's well-being. The effect of the material's energy-reflecting minerals may stimulate blood flow and help keep muscles and joints supple and flexible.
The Dachshund's distinctive appearance and strong hunting instinct have made it particularly useful as a hunting dog; more specifically, to hunt badgers and enter their holes.
Many representatives of the breed still spend their lives in forests and fields, as enduring working dogs and loyal hunting companions. But most Dachshunds today are pets, whose main task is to delight their surroundings with their playful and slightly stubborn personality.
If your favorite companion should develop a back problem, it would be a stressful emotional experience. But it could also entail a number of burdensome tasks, such as frequent visits to the vet and lengthy treatments. It is however possible to reduce the risk of herniated discs by keeping the Dachshund in a good general condition. And not all back problems in Dachshunds are due to the most feared of causes!
What is a herniated disc - and why are Dachshunds especially vunerable?
Between each vertebra of the spine lies a shock-absorbing, elastic disc made of cartilage. If the outer walls of the cartilage rupture, the jelly-like inner substance can bulge or leak out into the spinal canal. There, it can put pressure on nerves. Depending on the extent and location of the damage, this pressure can result in a wide range of symptoms; usually pain of varying intensity, but also loss of sensation and, in the worst cases, paralysis.
The vulnerability to herniated discs is related to the dachshund's characteristic physique - but it is not a direct consequence of the Dachshund's "long back" appearance. Instead, it is the genetic mutation that gives the Dashhund its short legs that has also entailed some unintended effects in a different area. Short legs are a desirable trait in a Dachshund - but the very same genetics has introduced a weakness, manifesting as reduced resistance and strength of the spinal discs.
A herniated disc can occur suddenly, with a dramatic onset of symptoms such as paralysis of the hind legs. This acute condition often requires surgery. But the symptoms can also develop gradually - and a milder condition may resolve with just strict rest and anti-inflammatory medication.
Any symptoms of discomfort and pain in your dog should always be properly investigated by a veterinarian, who can determine what has actually happened and decide on the appropriate course of action.
What can I do as an owner of a Dachshund?
Since the Dachshund carry this particular vulnerability, it may need special care to prevent strain on its back. It is, for example, considered unnecessarily stressful for a Dachshund to be made to jump or to run long distances. Nevertheless, it is important to also keep the Dachshund active, so that it can maintain a healthy body weight and build muscle in the stomach and back. Make sure your dog warm up well before engaging in intense activity – and give it time to unwind and recover. And offer it a comfortable dog bed where it can get a good rest!
Although herniated discs cannot always be prevented, strong muscles offer both support and stability, which significantly reduces the risk. A Dachshund in good condition will have a great chance of living a long and healthy life.
Back on Track – especially for Dachshunds!
Back on Track has developed several dog products specifically designed for Dachshunds. We offer a range of dog coats, both with and without filling, that are made to fit perfectly with their anatomy. This will protect your dog in all weather conditions – and our mesh dog coats can also be worn indoors, during rest and recovery. The fabric closest to the dog’s body always contain our Welltex®️ technology, which will make every item constantly absorb and emit the dog’s body heat in the form of far infrared energy (FIR).
FIR is considered beneficial in many ways; mainly because it may stimulate blood flow and thereby help keep muscles and joints warm and supple. This in turn can reduce stiffness and tension, increase mobility and also alleviate conditions such as osteoarthritis. The therapeutic Welltex®️ technology can also be found in our dog beds, in the soft lining of our dog collars and harnesses, as well as in our leg and paw braces and supports.
We at Back on Track are proud to see our products used by all sorts of Dachshunds, in all shapes and sizes! It is our greatest wish to be able to contribute to the long, joyful and active life of these wonderful dogs!