Are dachshunds aggressive?

When you are looking at getting a new dog, there are lots of things to consider. All dog breeds have their ups and downs, their strange quirks, and are all special in their own way. But it is an unavoidable fact that some dog breeds tend to be more aggressive than others. This doesn’t make them bad, it is just something you might want to consider before getting one as a pet.

When it comes to dachshunds, they actually can be quite aggressive. The reason being they were bred for hunting, meaning they were selectively made more aggressive over time and are now genetically predisposed to be on guard. Dachshunds bite out of fear, especially when meeting strangers, and are most prone to biting other animals. They were bred to hunt Badgers in Germany, and have kept that natural aggression towards other animals. It is possible to train it out of them, but many owners find their dachshund suddenly biting someone, or something, completely out of the blue. Even after years of no problems.

Dachshunds are not bad dogs, they can be very sweet and loving. Many never have any problems at all and make wonderful family pets, but you should be aware of their nature. This article explains what causes aggression towards, children, adults, other animals and how you can deal with it. Whether you are going to choose a dachshund or something else, it will all come in handy.

Aggressive black smooth-haired dachshund bared its teeth

What causes aggression in dogs?

There are 4 main causes of aggression in dogs. They all surface at different times and have different triggers. By understanding them you can help avoid them. They are as follows:

Breeding: Some dogs are bred to be aggressive. Whether it’s for guarding sheep, guarding homes, hunting, or fighting these dogs are selectively made more aggressive and more powerful. Dachshunds were bred to hunt badgers, therefore they are prone to show some aggression. But anyone who met a domestic dachshund knows they can be incredibly sweet to their owners. Breeding only plays a small part in aggression. A good owner makes the most difference.

Illness or Injury: Dogs that are injured, or sick, will be naturally more on guard and turn aggressive to anyone who approaches them. This is a genetically built-in defense mechanism that you should watch out for. If you find that your normally very chill dog has become suddenly aggressive, you should be on the lookout for illness or injury.

Fear: When dogs are scared they lash out. This can be as simple as meeting a new person or as complicated as trying to approach a stray that has been abused. Scared dogs are quite unpredictable, so they are the ones you must look out for the most.

Neglect: Dogs who have been neglected are going to be more aggressive. Dogs that are underfed, poorly trained, and abused are going to develop serious aggression problems. The best way to avoid this is to treat your dog with love and devotion.

What causes aggression toward children?

The most likely cause of aggression towards children is lack of training. If a dog doesn’t get enough social interactions with children as a puppy, it is far more likely to become scared and confused and lash out. Additionally, children can be quite rough. If they try petting too hard, pull the tail, or stroke the dog’s coat the wrong way it can upset the dog and cause it to bite or bark at them. 

What causes aggression towards adults?

A dog is less likely to be aggressive to an adult than a child, but it can still happen. There are many reasons behind this as mentioned above, but the most likely is fear. If a dog feels uncertain around you it may start to feel threatened, and turn aggressive. People are a lot bigger than dogs and can be very intimidating, especially to smaller dogs such as dachshunds.

What causes aggression towards dogs and other animals?

One of the more common problems people have with their dog is that it is aggressive to other dogs, and whatever other animals it may come in contact with. This is commonly caused by a lack of proper socialization at a young age. If you find the aggression is mostly between your dog and your other pets, it is likely a jealousy issue. Proper training will be able to solve this, perhaps with the help of a professional.

There is also a chance that it is because the dog is in heat. Having your dog spayed or neutered can help resolve this problem. 

Angry dachshund

How to deal with an aggressive dog?

There are a few ways to deal with an aggressive dog. What needs doing depends a lot on why the dog is being aggressive.

If you find your dog being aggressive to other people, pets, or children the best thing to do is take it to obedience school. If you haven’t managed to train the aggression out of your dog yourself, it is completely fine to seek help. It is so important to keep your dog, other dogs, and other people safe. 

If your dog is showing sudden signs of aggression when it is otherwise a very calm, chill, pup. It might be a good idea to give the vet a visit. Chances are there is an underlying medical condition that you aren’t aware of. If that isn’t the case, you can also discuss getting your dog spayed or neutered as that can hugely decrease adolescent aggression. This is most common in dogs between 1-3 years old.

Never punish your dog for bad behavior. It is much more effective to instead reward and encourage positive behavior. Don’t yell at your dog when it gets aggressive, reward it when it calms down. Don’t shout at your dog when it is barking, reward it when it stops.


Whilst, yes, as dogs go dachshunds can be quite aggressive, it does not mean you shouldn’t get one. Just like any dog, with the right training, love, and attention you can raise a wonderful dog. Dachshunds are very loyal to their owners and make loving companions, but this loyalty can lead to them acting out. If this is your first dog, a dachshund might not be the pooch for you. Check out this related post: Are dachshunds good with kids?

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Are dachshunds aggressive