All Things Dog

Fun With Your Comical Dachshund

No breed inspires humorous nicknames and light-hearted laughs like a Dachshund. And because they love to play so much, it's easy for you to join the fun … with a few gentle rules.

Before the games begin

It's helpful to know what games are good for Dachshunds and which you should avoid. Remember that this breed has a vulnerable spinal column. Games that cause them to jump to reach for a toy or run up and down stairs can put unnecessary stress on their long backs. It's safer to keep them close to the ground.

Also remember that while some Dachshunds like to fetch toys, this breed is not a retriever. More often than not they will run after a ball or toy, then hide it. Or if it's a squeaky toy, they'll rip it to shreds. This is because as hounds and hunters, Dachshunds were bred to chase and catch burrowing vermin and other animals, not retrieve them. So they instinctively want to tear the heart (or squeaker) out of a plush toy.

Games your Doxie will love

Despite their short legs, this playful breed loves to run with you on even surfaces, in the grass, even on the beach (on cool sand). And, of course, hide-and-seek is a Doxie favorite. Take his favorite plush toy, rawhide bone, or rubber ball, and hide it. He'll love using his keen sense of smell and intelligence to "hunt down the prey." Always reward your Doxie with a treat or ample praise when he makes the discovery.

The ultimate Doxie playdate

If your Dachshund socializes well with other dogs (and most do) you might consider the ultimate Dachshund play experience. Every April and October in New York City's Washington Square Park, more than 200 Doxies show up for the Dachshund Friendship's Club's costume parade and playdate. Your favorite dog will be treated to hours of toys and games with other fun-loving Dachshunds, while you can take advantage of a hilarious photo op.

The New York parade has become so popular, similar Dachshund events are also being held in San Francisco and many other U.S. cities. Check the Internet pet boards for Doxie clubs in your area-and join in the fun!

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