My fiance and I have recently added two mini dachshunds into our family. Jack and Kaye who are almost 10 months old :D They have brought nothing but joy to our lives! We have had a couple of snags in training and I was wondering if you could offer any guidance or assistance?
1. Potty Training: For the most part we have them completely potty trained we just have issues where we take them out and they won’t go then immediately come back in and go. I know dachshunds can be notoriously hard to potty train I was just wondering if you had any tips?
2. Leash: One of our dachshunds (Jack) is very stubborn on the leash and continually pulls and pulls. He stops when we tell him to but then goes right back to it again. Any suggestions?
3. Strangers: Our dachshunds sometimes go crazy when they see people or dogs. Do you have any suggestions to desensitize them in anyway to going crazy when they see people?
I love your blog!
Thank you! I’m not an expert by any stretch, but happy to share what has worked for us. I’m guessing there will be others who may have different advice, but take what works, and see how you go. Also worth noting is that I work from home most of the time so am around them a lot, which I think really helps with behaviour issues in dogs. That is something that dachshunds are very sensitive to - they experience terrible separation anxiety so hopefully you guys have something arranged so that at least one of you is around them a lot of the time.
They are so beautiful and of course they will get there, but you do have to put in a bit of work to have them trained - as you have noticed they can be very strong-willed, so make sure you guys are both on the same page with training as that makes things confusing for your dogs if one person lets them do something and the other person is strictly against it.
1. Potty Training: yes this does take some work, but it sounds like you are almost there with it. Lots of praise and the odd treat when they go outside is definitely helpful. If you ‘catch them in the act’ indoors some very firm “NO”s and if you can, get them back outside immediately, or during the act, that seems to help solidify it in their minds that going indoors is not on. We had an issue where ours were all doing the right thing but then we puppy-sat another dog for a bit and he decided to ‘mark his territory’ everywhere and that got a couple of ours started up doing it too (grrr) - there is a spray called “Urine Off” (you can get it at pet stores) which I found very helpful in stopping that behaviour if it is simply a matter of them ‘marking their territory’. Which could be part of it because they are new to your home, perhaps?
2. Leash: This is another very common issue! Do you have the leash attached to the collar or to a harness around the shoulders? I find that pulling seems less of a problem with a harness. My uncle, who is a very good dog trainer, advises to firmly pull them to the right or left when they pull forwards. Pulling backwards only engages them in what they are already doing and it can become a game or test of wills that way, whereas if you pull them right or left it reminds them you are in charge of the walk, not them. Another thing is to make sure they are walking beside you, not in front of you. They will think they are in charge of everything if you let them walk in front and it is actually quite stressful for them, as they are looking out for potential threats and danger if they are the ‘front dog’. If you have them beside you, they can relax because you are looking out for them, not the other way around.
3. Strangers: this is one that will hopefully resolve itself with time & practice. Dachshunds are usually very protective of their home base and their people. However if you make sure you socialise them with lots of different people and dogs, this should become less of a problem. As with any training, use a firm clear voice, give plenty of positive reinforcement (praise and/or treats when they do the right thing), and take things slowly. Don’t introduce them to too many people or dogs at once, just start with one stranger/dog and then increase numbers as they become more relaxed around others.
Good luck! You have a couple of total darlings there for the looks of it :)