5 Fab Haircuts for Longhaired Dachshunds
Dachshunds are famously independent dogs. Originally bred as hunting companions, their long bodies, short legs, and larger-than-life courage served them well as they plunged into holes in search of badgers, hares, and foxes. But despite their spunky can-do attitude, there's at least one thing these fierce sausage dogs can't do without your help: care for their coats.
Dachshund Coat Grooming Basics
Dachshunds are generally considered to be a low-maintenance breed with regards to grooming, but they aren't a no-maintenance dog and they shed. In fact, according to Vanessa Slagle, owner and groomer at Lovely Pets Grooming in Bella Vista, Ark., all three doxie coat types (smooth, wirehaired, and longhaired) shed, though in her experience, wirehaired pups are the heaviest shedders of the trio.
The type of hair your doxie has will determine their basic care needs. Unsurprisingly, smooth dachshunds require the least amount of maintenance. A weekly wipe-down with a towel can be enough to keep their fur clean and healthy. Longhaired doxies are at the opposite end of the spectrum and need to be brushed at least once a week, with a focus on the ears and tail, to prevent matting, Slagle says. "Regular brushing is less crucial for wirehaired coats and can be pushed to once every two weeks and even every four weeks, depending on the dog," she continues. And as for Slagle's detangling tools of choice, she recommends a slicker brush and a metal comb for both wirehaired and longhaired doxies.
All dachshund coat types should be bathed no more than once every six to eight weeks. Otherwise, you risk drying out your pup's skin. But not to worry—these low-to-the-ground dogs are also low on body odor.
5 Longhaired Dachshund Haircut Styles
In addition to regular brushing, Slagle recommends haircuts for longhaired dachshunds every eight to 10 weeks. Not sure which cut to choose for your companion? Peruse the popular haircut styles below and talk to your groomer about which one best suits you and your doxie. "It's really just personal preference on which cut is better for the lifestyle and temperament of the dog," Slagle explains. And remember, these haircuts are not suitable for wirehaired dachshunds, whose unique coat requires hand stripping because of their undercoats.
Here are five doxie 'dos to consider:
There's nothing wrong with a simple trim. In fact, Slagle says it's one of the most popular cuts she does on doxies. True to its name, a simple trim involves a light hair trim on the body. Slagle also neatens up the legs and feet and does a sanitary trim of the genital area and the area around the anus. This is a great option if you love your dachshund's au naturale look but want to keep him in tip top shape.
Your doxie's long hair is an asset in the winter and in cold climates, but you don't want to cook your little sausage dog when the temperature rises, The summer cut offers an easy, breezy solution for beating the heat, Slagle explains. She typically uses a No. 7 or No. 10 blade all over the dog's body for a very short cut. If you aren't familiar with blade sizes, the higher the blade number, the shorter the cut. So using a No. 7 blade will leave a slightly longer coat than using a No. 10. Finally, Slagle leaves it up to the pet parents whether she trims the ears and the tail. It's the perfect low-maintenance style for lazy summer days.
If you have an older dachshund, there's no need to scroll past the puppy cut. It's for puppies in age and puppies at heart. "A puppy cut is just a general term for trimming all hair to one length, usually with a longer guard comb," Slagle says. "It can vary between 0.5 to 1 inch, depending on what the pet parent wants." So if you're looking for a style that's both cute and easy to maintain, the puppy cut delivers.
The idea behind a show cut is that you are styling your dog to fit the American Kennel Club's breed standard. According to the standard, a longhaired dachshund's coat should be "longer under the neck and on the forechest, the underside of the body, the ears, and behind the legs." Short hair on the ears is considered "undesirable," and a coat that's too long or curly can also be faults. Finally, the standard notes that the longest hair should be found on the tail, where it forms a "veritable flag."
If your doxie is entering a conformation show, your groomer will carefully work to meet all these specifications to the tiniest detail. But if you'd like your dog to win Best in Show in your living room, your groomer can take a more laid-back approach that still yields elegant results.
Doxies have a boldness that could rival the King of the Jungle, so they might as well have a haircut to match. "For this cut, we shave the body with a shorter blade but stop at the shoulders," Slagle explains. "This leaves a longer, mane-like appearance." Just be warned that this may lead to laughter every time you spy your loveable lap lion.
More Tips for Grooming Your Dachshund at Home
Grooming doesn't begin and end with a dazzling dachshund coat. Be sure to include these steps in your routine, as well:
- Nail Trims. Slagle says doxies typically need their nails trimmed every four to six weeks. A good rule of thumb is that if you can hear your dog's nails click as they walk across the floor, it's probably time for a trim.
- Teeth Brushing. In an ideal world, you would brush your doxie's teeth every day. If that isn't possible, find a schedule that works for you–even if it's as infrequent as once a week.
- Ear Checks. Slagle has seen a lot of dachshunds with ear infections thanks to their adorable floppy flaps. Talk to your veterinarian about what's normal, what isn't, and how to prevent infections altogether.
One last tip: Slagle recommends kickstarting good grooming habits when your dachshund is a puppy if possible. Getting your doxie used to the process at a young age can make things easier for you (and for them!) later on.