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Dapple Dachshund: Nine Fascinating Facts

The Dapple Dachshund is a unique type of Dachshund that’s distinguished by its colorful, spotted, dapple-style fur coat. 

Dapple Dachshunds are perhaps better known as spotted sausage dogs because, like all dogs in the Dachshund family, the dappled variety are longer than they are tall. These short-legged, long-bodied dogs were bred to be hunters (but don’t worry, they aren’t the fierce type!), and while they take a lot of training and grooming, the Dapple Dachshund is a wonderfully loving, quirky, and energetic family dog to have in the home. 

In this article, we’ll explain what sets the Dapple Dachshund apart from other Dachshunds before running through our top 9 fascinating Dapple Dachshund facts!

What is the Dapple Dachshund? 

The Dapple Dachshund isn’t a specific breed, but rather, it’s a type of Dachshund dog that has a specific pattern on its fur coat. Dapple Dachshunds are just like regular Dachshunds - they have short legs and long bodies, and they rightly deserve the nickname of ‘sausage dog’!

Dapple Dachshunds can also be either long-haired, wire-haired, or smooth-haired dogs (these are the three major classifications of Dachshund). Dapple Dachshunds are unique, though, because they have dappled coats. 

This means that they have visible spots or round patches on their coats that are a different color from the rest of the coat. It’s an unusual pattern, and it occurs when one dappled Dachshund is bred with another un-dappled Dachshund (or when two Dapple Dachshunds produce a Double Dapple Dachshund, but we’ll explain later why this is dangerous). 

Dapple Dachshund overview

Let’s take a quick look at the physical attributes and temperament that you can expect to see in a Dapple Dachshund before we get to the fun facts. 

Height and weight

Dapple Dachshunds can be either standard size or miniature size. Standard Dapple Dachshunds are at least 9 inches in height and can weigh between 15 and 32 pounds. 

The miniature Dapple Dachshund is much smaller and will weigh just 11 pounds and be 6 inches in height. 


Dapple Dachshunds, like all Dachshunds, are friendly, curious, and affectionate. They need a lot of attention, and a lot of Dapple Dachshund training is called for from a young age. It’s not a breed that’s recommended for first-time owners. 


Dapple Dachshunds need a lot of grooming to keep their fur coats in good shape. The Long Haired Dapple Dachshund needs the most grooming, as they have the longest coats. Regular Dapple Dachshund grooming, brushing, and trimming are a must. 

Health issues

Dachshund back problems are the most common health issue that this breed is going to face - it’s a direct result of their long body shape and short legs. 

Double Dapple Dachshunds - Double Dapple Dachshund puppies result from two Dapple Dachshunds breeding - commonly have a wide range of potentially dangerous genetic conditions that primarily affect their eyes and ears. 

Top 9 Dapple Dachshund Facts

This is a unique type of Dachshund, so let’s take a look at the nine top facts you should know about the spotted sausage dog!

1. Dachshunds were bred as hunting dogs

Dachshunds are some of the cutest dogs known to humankind, so it’s difficult to visualize these tiny pups as hunters! But it’s true; Dachshunds were initially bred in Germany to be hunters!

Their short legs ensure that Dachshunds are always close to the ground, which makes sniffing out small animals like rabbits and badgers much easier. 

Your Dapple Dachshund is likely to spend a lot of time digging around the garden, a throwback to their hunting past!

2. Dapple Dachshunds come in many colors

Dapple Dachshunds are some of the most colorful dogs out there, and not just because of their unique dapple pattern. Dachshund colors are various, and you’ll find everything from a brindle Dachshund to a fawn Dachshund. 

Cream, red, brown, white, black, and tan, and all sorts of mixtures and combinations are all common to see.

3. Do Dachshunds shed?

In simple terms, yes. However, the amount of shedding is usually moderate, but this does depend on the coat. There three different types of coat: smooth, longhaired, and wirehaired.

4. A Dapple Dachshund only needs one spot to be dappled

Dapple coats can vary enormously in terms of the number of spots and the size of the spots. In fact, some Dapple Dachshunds only have one small spot on their coat, but this is enough for them to be considered by breeders as ‘dappled.’ 

The dapple gene can then be passed onto another generation, who may very well have many more spots!

5. The merle gene causes dappling

Dapple patterns are caused by a single gene, which is known as the merle gene. A dog must have this gene for it to have distinctive dapple patterns. 

Unfortunately, this gene doesn’t just cause lovely patterns, and it’s also responsible for a number of inherited diseases. While the majority of Dapple Dachshunds are healthy dogs, the merle gene becomes incredibly dangerous when a dog is ‘double dappled.’

A Double Dapple dog has received genes for dappling from both the mother and father (rather than from just one or the other). Double dapple dogs can be born without any hearing, or they can lose their sight, amongst other genetic defects. In fact, it’s so dangerous that most kennel clubs outlaw Double Dapple Dachshunds entirely. 

6. All Dachshunds experience back problems

The most common Dapple Dachshund health issues (Double Dapple Dachshunds aside) are the same as all types of Dachshunds - back problems. 

Dachshunds technically have a form of dwarfism, which accounts for their small legs and unusual body shape. This leads to chronic back problems as the dog grows older, particularly IVDD (Intervertebral Disc Disease). 

You can help your dotson dog to remain healthy by providing them with a bed ramp for dogs to assist in them getting around the home safely, without damaging their backs. 

7. Dapple Dachshunds love digging up the garden!

Dapple Dachshunds can be quite the handful, particularly if you’re not used to training this unique breed of dog!

Because they are descended from hunters, Dapple Dachshunds have an innate love of digging. You’ll often find them in the garden or in the park, digging up the turf or tearing up the flowerbeds. 

They might just be inquisitive, or they may well have caught the scent of an animal. Either way, your garden won’t be thanking you!

8. Dapple Dachshunds need lots of grooming

Dapple Dachshunds might look fantastic, but they’ll need a whole lot of grooming to keep them this way. Dapple Dachshund coats are remarkably silky and smooth, as well as being colorful, and to keep them healthy and debris-free, they’ll need to be brushed at least once a week. 

Get Dapple Dachshund puppies accustomed to brushing from an early age because they’ll need to be trimmed, washed, and groomed regularly. 

9. Dapple Dachshunds love to bark 

Dapple Dachshunds are small dogs, but they have quite the bark when they want your attention. 

These dogs can be famously loud, particularly when they encounter other animals or dogs or unfamiliar human beings. 

That makes them great for warning homeowners of intruders, but unfortunately, their small size won’t stand up to much!

10. Dapple Dachshunds are full of love and affection

Dapple Dachshunds might be a handful (and they certainly aren’t a good dog for first-time owners), but underneath all that high maintenance is a lovable, affectionate rouge who’s just looking for your attention. 

Dapple Dachshunds might take a lot of training and consistent reinforcement to keep them in line, but they’ll reward your efforts with companionship and loyalty for life. 

Dapple Dachshund: the last word

The Dapple Dachshund is a unique type of Dachshund that’s sought after by dog-enthusiasts across the world. Count yourself lucky if you have the chance to raise this wonderful Dachshund from a pup!

Remember, though, that Dapple Dachshunds can be prone to back problems and inherited diseases, and of course, like all Dachshunds, they need regular grooming and lots of training. Put in the effort, though, and you’ll be rewarded with an affectionate, inquisitive, and loyal pet dog.

If you’re interested in raising a spotted sausage dog, then why not bookmark our guide to the Dapple Dachshund for future reading?

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