Does your Dachshund need to be by your side every second of the day? Does he follow you wherever you go, and cry if you’re out of sight? Here’s everything you need to know about why Dachshunds are so needy.
Why Are Dachshunds So Needy? Dachshunds are needy because they’re pack animals that don’t like being left alone. They’re incredibly loyal and clingy with their owners and are very demanding of love and attention. If they get too needy, it can lead to separation anxiety when you leave the house.
Read on to find out what causes Dachshunds to be so needy, whether they need a lot of attention, and what you can do to make your Dachshund less reliant on you!
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This article is based on research and personal experience as a Dachshund owner of 10+ years. I’m not a Vet, qualified dog trainer or dog behaviourist.
Why Are Dachshunds So Needy And Clingy?
The reasons why Dachshunds are so needy:
Dachshunds are pack animals
Originally, Dachshunds were bred to live and work in packs. This means they have a lot of natural instincts that are still present in their lives today.
Dachshunds don’t like being alone
As pack animals, Dachshunds are used to living in groups. They can feel anxious without social contact, whether that’s from another dog or from a human.
Dachshunds naturally follow the alpha
Because of the hierarchy in Dachshund packs, it’s in their instinct to follow the alpha. That’s you by the way! So, if your Dachshund is following you around a lot, it could be to do with that natural instinct.
Dachshunds are prone to separation anxiety
Some Dachshunds suffer from separation anxiety. This is when they get very anxious and distressed when you’re out of sight. This is either because you’re in another room or because you’ve left the house.
Your Dachshund has no boundaries
Your Dachshund isn’t automatically going to know that he shouldn’t follow you everywhere. So you need to decide what the boundaries are and then teach him to stick to them.
For example, if you don’t want your Dachshund to follow you into the bathroom, work on that with training from day one.
You fuss over your Dachshund too much
Sometimes, we unwittingly encourage needy behaviour in our Dachshunds. We like the cuddles as it makes us feel extra loved to have a Dachshund following us around.
The thing is, showering your Dachshund in attention all the time and always encouraging him to follow you can lead to him becoming very dependent on you.
This can then cause big issues with separation anxiety when you do need to go out.
Your Dachshund is hoping for treats!
Rather than being needy, your Dachshund might actually be following you around because he knows he’s going to get rewarded for doing so.
Often, we reward our Dachshunds for needy behaviour without meaning to. For example, your Dachshund might follow you to the front door so you reward him by taking him for a walk. Or he may follow you into the pantry so you reward him by giving him a treat.
The more this happens, the more he’ll get into the habit of following you around because he knows he’ll get what he wants – treats and rewards!
You’re the chosen one!
Dachshunds are an incredibly loyal breed that tends to pick one human to latch onto in the household.
It’s normal for puppies to get close to the people who spend the most time with them, but Dachshunds can be particularly clingy.
If you don’t create a bit of space between you from a an early age, your Dachshund may end up very needy around you.
Why Is My Dachshund Suddenly Being Needy?
If your Dachshund is normally quite independent and is suddenly being needy, he might be feeling vulnerable for some reason.
This could be to do with a health issue or it may be because something has unsettled him.
Here are some possible causes but it’s best to speak with your vet if you’re at all concerned:
Your Dachshund has an underlying health condition
Your Dachshund might be suffering from an illness or injury, so is sticking with you because he needs to feel secure and comforted.
If you suspect your Dachshund might be unwell or injured, contact your vet right away.
Your Dachshund could be going blind or deaf
When your Dachshund gets older, there’s a chance he might start losing his hearing or eyesight which would cause him to be more needy.
If he’s used to being independent, he’ll naturally feel very vulnerable and will need you to guide him and give some extra reassurance.
Of course, if you suspect your Dachshund could be going deaf or blind, contact your vet right away.
Your Dachshund doesn’t like change
Dachshunds are very sensitive dogs, so even seemingly small changes in their routine or environment can worry them and cause them to become more needy.
Has anything changed in your Dachshund’s life recently that may have affected him? This could be anything from a baby being born to a new person moving in, to you bringing home a new dog or cat.
It could even be something simple like your work pattern changing so you’re home at different times of the day, unsettling his normal routine.
Your Female Dachshund could be in heat
For younger Dachshunds in particular, hormone changes can be very confusing and may lead to clingy or needy behaviours.
Your Dachshund may be frightened
When Dachshunds are spooked they instantly become more needy. So could something have happened to frighten your Dachshund?
For example, was there a storm that scared him, or fireworks going off, or maybe some loud building works or bangs happening nearby?
These types of things can all cause a Dachshund to become more clingy and needy around you.
Your Dachshund may be unsettled
There’s normally a reason behind sudden changes in a Dachshund’s behaviour and that’s why it needs to be taken seriously.
It’s important to make sure your house is a safe space for your Dachshund, and that he’s not being made to feel anxious or scared.
Do Dachshunds Need A Lot Of Attention?
Yes, Dachshunds do need a lot of attention! Even though they’re stubborn and independent, they love nothing more than heaps of fuss from their owners. Some Dachshunds can be quite demanding of attention, so try not to fuss over them too much or they could become needy and not cope well without you.
It’s best to wait for your Dachshund to calm down and then you initiate the fuss on your terms. That way he’ll learn boundaries and won’t be quite so dependent on you.
How Do I Stop My Dachshund Being So Needy?
The more your Dachshund relies on you for attention and comfort, the more he’ll struggle if he has to be on his own.
You don’t ever want your Dachshund to become possessive of you. This may lead to resource guarding and aggression further down the line.
No matter how much you love your Dachshund, you can’t be with him every second of the day. So what can you do?
This is how to stop your Dachshund being so needy:
Book a vet check for your Dachshund
First things first, if you’re worried your Dachshund may be unwell or injured and that’s what’s causing him to be needy, then take him to the vet
They’ll be able to advise you on any treatment that’s needed, or reassure you that everything’s OK health-wise.
Focus on socialisation with your Dachshund
The more you get your Dachshund used to being around other sights, sounds, smells, people and dogs, the more confident and independent he’ll become (and the less he’ll rely on you!).
Work on separation training with your Dachshund
If you notice your Dachshund being needy and you’re sure it’s not to do with a health issue, gently introduce some separation training into your day to nip the problem in the bud.
Basically you’ll need to have scheduled time away from your Dachshund to teach him that it’s Ok to be alone. Start with a few minutes at first and build up to a few hours a day.
To learn how to work on separation anxiety, click here!
Share the Dachshund duties
If you have children or a partner who can take on some of the responsibilities of looking after your Dachshund, get them to do it.
This should stop your Dachshund being so reliant on you, and will then ease some of the neediness.
Create boundaries with your Dachshund
It’s best to decide upfront what you’re going to allow and not allow your Dachshund to do, and then be consistent with it.
Having some time apart and space from your Dachshund is a good thing too, as it’ll make him more independent and confident.
If you have an already needy Dachshund, it might not be a good idea to let him sleep in your bed at night. He may get even more attached to you and be desperately upset when you leave the house.
Just put his dog bed on the floor nearby so there’e a little bit of distance between you.
Use the same idea for the sofa too. Pop his bed by your feet so he gets used to his place in the pack and that way you encourage him to be a bit more independent.
Don’t reward your Dachshund’s needy behaviour
Be sure not to reward your Dachshund for following you around. Instead, reward him when he lays in the sun by the window or goes on his bed on his own.
This will encourage him to be a more chilled and independent dog.
So, there you have it! Dachshunds are prone to being needy as they’re pack animals that like being with people or other dogs. They’re generally very demanding of love and attention and, if they get too needy, this can lead to separation anxiety further down the line. So work with your Dachshund and train them to be happy and confident with or without you there!
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