Dachshunds in the Rockies

Living with dachshunds in the Rocky Mountains gives us a few challenges and things to be aware of on their behalf. While we have four seasons the weather trends have blurred the lines a little. Here are some things you can do to provide some TLC and help your furry legged friends through the seasons. When your tummy is just inches from the ground, walks in the summer heat can be unbearable and overwhelming (better in the morning before the heat of the day)–and when the snow is taller than you are, it’s rough! 

In Salt Lake City, Utah, where the Rocky Mountain Dachshund Rescue was founded, we sometimes have more than neighborhood cats roaming through the yard and starlings overhead; we’ve had mountain lions, raccoons, birds of prey (like eagles and hawks) that make it down into the neighborhoods near the mountains.

Red dachshund in wading pool

When your tummy is just inches from the ground, walks in the summer heat can be unbearable and overwhelming. Walks are better in the morning before the heat of the day and not after the cement has baked in the sun.

red dachshund on a snow day

During the winter months the snow is often taller than the dachshunds are! Shoveling a path and spot to go potty is not only the right thing to do, it’s part of the winter to do list for dachshund-families in the Rockies.

Dog Days of Summer:

  • Common sense: don’t ever leave a dachshund or any dog in the car
  • With our high temps dachshunds shouldn’t be kept outdoors, they aren’t outdoor dogs
  • Try walking them on grass instead of pavement as the temperature of the grass is lower. Walking on the sidewalk? Consider going before or well after the heat of the day
  • Splash pads (if they aren’t big chewers–had a standard dachshund tear a whole in one)
  • Consider walking them with a harness. (When they pull against it, a leash on their collar can collapse their trachea)
  • Outdoor water bowls
  • Fireworks often stress out and scare dogs. Keeping them inside can help keep them from bolting. Some neighborhoods near the mountains ban the use of fireworks due to brush fires that have been started from on and near the mountains
  • Shade cabanas have been a popular new trend for dogs
  • Consider taking water with you on walks for them to have a drink
  • Pup-sicles: thin broth-sicles with broken up treats frozen in them (to eat outside on the grass)
  • Frozen kongs
  • Cooling bed/cots are up off the ground, but low to the ground, it allows air to circulate underneath (put these in a shady area)
Fall Pumpkins Dachshund
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Winter Wonderland for Dachshunds:

  • With our low winter temps (10-35 degrees typically) dachshunds shouldn’t be kept outdoors, they aren’t outdoor dogs
  • Warm blankets or a towel fresh out of the dryer is a great treat for our burrowing pups
  • Going outside to go potty during rain or snow–consider going out with them to take a short walk with an umbrella or take them to an overhang or sheltered area
  • If they refuse to go potty outside in rain or snow make sure you have potty training pads down by the door that they go in and out of. That said, they are very considerate about missing the pads and not messing them up
  • Short haired dachshunds might feel better with a sweater or coat on when going outside, keep a couple of these washed up and clean to rotate through
  • Consider shoes for walks on the cold icy sidewalks
  • Bake homemade dog cookies for you doxies
  • Cycle their blankets and beds regularly and keep them washed and clean
  • It is only fair that we shovel a path into their potty area so they can get out there. It’s especially ruff when the snow is taller than they are, or when their bare tummies have to go through the snow
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“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than you love yourself.”
-- Josh Billings

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