Nowadays there are easy ways to remember routine preventative medication like annual vaccinations, monthly anti-flea treatments,  and any localised preventative treatments in your country. If you’re lucky, your veterinarian will send you a text message as an extra reminder - ours does.  

Brushing, brushing, brushing

Sunny is a really shiny dog.  We often get stopped with compliments on his shininess! The best thing we’ve found for brushing him is a very cheap cotton mitten with little rubber fingers on one side, which is now referred to in our house as The Glove of Love. We only have to take the glove out of the dog drawer and Sunny has already rolled over onto his side in preparation.  He usually gets brushed a little every day after breakfast.  Brushing time is a great opportunity for checking him all over.

Long or wire haired vs. short coat dachshunds

Our standard dachshund Sunny is a short haired guy. He’s easycare, and totally wash-and-go. He doesn’t need any hair cuts, blow drying, coat stripping, or detangling.  We wash him only when he gets a bit smelly, using Aesop’s Animal Wash pet shampoo. He gets a quick towel dry and then zooms around the house to finish the job. 

His washing schedule tends to be determined by whether or not he’s been rolling in fox poo, which in turn seems to happen in threes.  Maybe you know this routine?  Dachshund rolls in poo, needs a bath, feels too clean, and then rolls in poo again two days later.  Wash and repeat.  When this cycle starts nowadays, we’ve learned to keep Sunny on a lead for a few days to prevent further rolling. 

Easy care dog coats for our dachshund

Our preference is for washable, easycare collars and dog coats for our dachshund.  After the first roll in fox poo we were never going to put him in something that couldn’t be thrown in the washing machine or which would take a long time to dry afterwards.  Every so often we wash all his nylon collars and dog coats, and microfibre drying towels, and they all dry fast just hanging out to dry naturally.  

Nails, teeth, ears: Saturday is beauty day

Unlike brushing and baths, nail clipping and cleaning of ears and teeth are not enjoyable and relaxing for our dachshund.  We decided to organise these tasks into a weekly routine around the treat bag, so as to make sure everything gets done, especially as he doesn’t need to go to a professional groomer for his coat. 

I hated trying to clip Sunny’s nails.  He felt my hesitation and always tried to wriggle away.  In the end we followed a suggestion that his breeder gave us, and got a small battery operated circular sandpaper or emery board (like a little round nail file).  She used a big plug-in Black and Decker-style tool, but we decided to start small (and we only have one dog to groom).  The tool costs under £10 online, and is really easy to use.  I hold each of Sunny’s nails firmly as I file it so as to reduce the vibration for him, and he has got completely used to the procedure.

We use a little finger brush - like a polyester sock - to clean his teeth with yummy meat flavoured toothpaste.  It’s quite messy, and he ended up with toothpaste all over his face this week (just like me on some mornings).  Ear cleaning is very satisfying, with a few drops of a suitable cleaner massaged into his outer ear and then wiped out with a soft paper towel or flat cotton wool pad.  How do his ears get so dirty every week?  It must be all this rolling in fox poo. 

How do you organise all the grooming and maintenance that your dachshund needs?