Are you thinking of getting a dachshund and wondering what to feed him? Or perhaps you want to change your dachshund’s diet? We’re going to answer your questions about what dachshunds eat.
What do dachshunds eat? Dachshunds will eat dry, wet, raw or homecooked food. Each of these options is fine, as long as you buy the ‘Complete’ versions. Miniature dachshunds need less food than standards. Adults generally have two meals a day and puppies have at least three meals a day.
If you’re wondering how much dachshunds should eat, what food is best for them and whether your puppy’s feeding routine will change as he gets older? Read on to find out what food dachshunds like, how much they need, how often they should be fed and why they’re always hungry!
Table of Contents
What do dachshunds eat?
This is what dachshunds eat:
- Dry food
- Wet food
- Home cooked food
- Raw food/BARF diet
One thing is certain – dachshunds love food! They’ll eat pretty much anything you give them. But it’s important they get the right nutrition from their diet in order to stay healthy and in good condition.
Here are the different food options you could feed your dachshund:
This is perfectly fine, as long as you choose the ‘Complete’ option and not the ‘Complementary’ food. It comes in kibbles or pellets. Dry food is good because it’s affordable, you can buy it in bulk, it keeps for ages and it’s beneficial for your dachshund’s teeth (just don’t water it down).
Again, wet food is fine, as long as it’s a ‘Complete’ type. This basically means it gives your dachshund all the nutrients he needs, without having to add other foods. Dachshunds love wet food because it usually comes covered in gravy with big chunks of juicy meat!
Home cooked food
You can prepare your own meals for your dachshund, if you prefer. Just make sure you know what nutritional value you need to be giving him and every meal meets that.
In general, try to choose foods that are natural and don’t contain any chemicals or artificial additives etc. And steer clear of any foods that have a high percentage of grains like soy or wheat, as dachshunds can be allergic.
Natural food off the shelf
There are some great natural food options out there which you can buy off the shelf. In the UK, we have Lily’s Kitchen which, although a little pricey, make proper food for dogs using fresh, wholesome ingredients.
They use fresh or freshly prepared meat (no meat meal) with fruit, veg and herbs in their recipes, and there are no nasties whatsoever. They also offer dry options and things like dental sticks and healthy treats. It’s definitely worth a look! There will be many more natural options like this throughout the world if you search online.
Raw food / BARF diet
It’s becoming more and more popular to feed dachshunds a raw diet. Dachshunds generally love raw food, it’s great for their health and skin, and it’s actually quite natural for them to eat that way.
Raw food sounds messy and gruesome, but it’s usually frozen into blocks or nuggets, which you just pop into your dog’s bowl to defrost (so don’t worry, you won’t get bloody hands).
What is a BARF diet for dachshunds?
A Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) diet returns dachshunds to what their ancestors would have naturally eaten. It’s made up of raw meat and bones, vegetables and fruit with no modern day processing.
How much should a dachshund eat?
This is a general guide for how much you should feed an active adult dachshund:
|Weight||Calories||Protein (calories)||Carb (calories)||Fats (calories)|
Dachshunds vary greatly in shape and size, and the amount of food you give them depends on their age, size, activity level, and the type of food you’re feeding them.
An older dachshund that sleeps on the sofa all day needs less food than a young, fit dachshund that loves playing and going on walks. And miniature dachshunds need less food than standard dachshunds. So check the weight guidelines on the food carefully.
Just like human nutrition, being healthy is not just about calorie counting. You have to give your dachshund the right vitamins, minerals and nutrients. So, follow the macros for your dog based on their weight (and not just calories), Then you’ll be able to see if the food you’re giving them has the right breakdown of protein, carbs and fats, regardless of whether it’s wet, dry, freshly cooked or raw.
And, if your dachshund needs to lose or put on a bit of weight, reduce or increase the calories and macros by 10%. As with humans, this is a healthy way to control weight, along with regular exercise.
How much a puppy eats will change as he grows. Between months 2 and 5, his food volume will go up. Then, from month 6 to 9, it’ll come down again. This is because he needs more food as he develops, and, once his adult metabolism kicks in, he needs to come back to a normal portion size.
When your dachshund reaches his golden years, you may notice he slows down a bit and can’t manage as much food. At this point, you’ll naturally start reducing his food in line with his activity levels. Just keep an eye on his weight to make sure he doesn’t put on or lose too much.
To help you work out exactly how much to feed your dachshund, ask your vet for advice. They’ll be able to tell you how much your sausage dog weighs and how much he should weigh. Then it’ll be easier for you to work out daily food volumes.
What treats can dachshunds have?
- Packaged treats
- Healthy, natural treats
- Dental chews
- Dried treats
- Treat-filled toys
You can feed your dachshund treats as part of a healthy, balanced diet. Dachshunds are prone to obesity so pick the most nutritious options. Here are some ideas:
Look for treats without artificial preservatives, colourings or flavourings.
Healthy, natural treats
Dachshunds love chunks of watermelon, carrots, cucumber and broccoli.
Dachshunds love chews and, if you get natural ones, they’re good for their teeth too.
Dachshunds really enjoy stinky fish like dried minnows and sprats. They also like air dried venison sausages and liver treats which are all healthy, tasty options.
You could give your dachshund a Kong toy stuffed with peanut butter (only types that don’t contain xylitol or palm oil) or mashed-up banana. Not all dachshunds like these though.
How many times a day should you feed a dachshund?
A dachshund puppy should be fed at least 3 meals a day. An adult dachshund should be fed 2 meals a day. Senior dachshunds may need only 1 meal a day (depending on activity levels). You can also give a few treats throughout the day but limit them.
Puppies need meals in the morning, lunchtime and evening to keep their nutrition and blood sugar stable. Otherwise they’re at risk of hypoglycaemia. Some people even add in another meal. If you can manage that with your schedule, it’s better to have a higher number of meals when they’re young and space the food quantity throughout the day (little and often).
Adult dachshunds will be healthiest when they’re following a consistent daily eating routine. You can split their food however you like, as long as he’s getting the right amount every day (2 meals). Most people give their dogs a small portion (25%) in the morning and their main meal (say 75% of their daily food) in the evening.
As your dachshund gets older, his metabolism will slow down and he may not want 2 meals a day. So you could bring him down to just 1. Make sure you monitor his weight and speak to a vet if he’s really off his food or losing too much weight.
What time should you feed a dachshund?
Breakfast is normally around 7am to 8am and dinner around 4pm to 5pm. For puppies, you’ll need to add in a lunchtime meal at around noon. Make sure his last meal is at least 5 hours before bedtime so he can digest his food and poo before he goes to bed.
Don’t leave his bowl out all day as he’ll just chomp away. You’ve got to regulate the amount of food in his bowl and feed him at the same time each day.
And remember, once he’s eaten he’ll probably need the loo, so schedule his mealtimes at a time that’s convenient for you too. Once you get into a routine, he’ll know what happens and when, and will remind you when it’s time!
Why are dachshunds always hungry?
In general, dachshunds are always hungry because they’re greedy. But there could also be something missing from his diet. If you’re worried, check with your vet that he’s getting the right amount of food and nutrition for his size, weight and activity level.
So, there you have it. Dachshunds eat a varied diet and love their food, but eating too much is bad for their health. Dachshunds are prone to obesity, so it’s up to you to give him a healthy, balanced diet, and keep him on the right track. Lets face it, he’ll want as much food as he can convince you to give him, so stay strong! Don’t give in! Resist that adorable face!