Oh how absolutely cute ... I've never actually met one either.
Do you have to take extra special care with those looooooong backs and short wee legs ??
Sean, I used to have a couple of dobermans and I fell in love with them too! Their energy is not well matched for me though, a big part of why I chose a black and tan dachshund is because they remind me of dobermans(just in a more compact manageable size )! Of course I did a heap of research before I decided to get one to make sure they would be a good fit for me and I don't regret getting him one bit Certainly been a challenge so far but I'm pretty sure I can out stubborn him, lol.
His name is Dexter and he's 15 weeks at the moment. We finished up at puppy school today and pretty much everyone commented that he didn't seem to have gotten any bigger, lol! He has actually gotten bigger, it's just by such a small amount that all the people with big breeds couldn't see it, hehe.
I haven't met many of them either to be honest, but I had read a few things about them being a bit funny with strangers and such so I was a bit paranoid, however I was very happy to meet his grandmother when I picked him up and she was the sweetest little dog, very friendly, no barking, just all over you wanting pats and kisses. Bonus that he had been around cats too since I have a cat, they got off to a bit of a tentative start, but they're just like brothers now. Going to keep up the socialisation with animals and people so we don't end up with any attitude problems when he's older.
You do need to be careful with their backs yes, another thing I'm paranoid about, but it helps that we have a one story house, so there're no stairs inside for him to have issues with. I have rock steps in the garden and I don't mind him climbing up them, but when I can I always try and carry him down, or if I don't have any free hands, I make sure he goes down slowly and doesn't skip any steps so it's as gradual as possible. Also I'm just careful that our play isn't too enthusiastic, being so small I have to sit on the ground a lot with him so if we're playing tug I'm not pulling him upwards or anything that could hurt his neck or back. I've given him a couple of bricks around the doorways too so he's got less of a step down, and also to get up onto his outside bed.. otherwise it's about face height for him.
I'm also crate training him so that if anything ever does happen to his back, and I need to confine him to a crate he'll be ok with it. Helps at night too, at least I know he can't get himself into any trouble.
Sounds like Dexter has won your heart ... funnily enough I spoke to a couple last night who had a very long lived dachshund, they wouldn't have any other dog... enjoy
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