Dachshunds are small dogs, originally hailing from Germany, that were bred to hunt. Their long, low shape means that they can hunt both above and below ground, into burrows or tunnels. The American Kennel Club recognises three different dachshund coat varieties, and two different sizes.
Smooth Coated Dachshunds
All dachshund types, no matter what coat or size they are, display the same body structure and appearance. This appearance is perhaps easiest to see on the smooth coated dachshund, also known as the shorthaired dachshund, since their coats are short and lie flat to the body. The dachshund's body itself is elongated. These dogs have short legs and are low to the ground. They are powerful and muscular. The smooth coated dachshund has long, soft ears that droop down. It also has a thin, tapered tail. Smooth coated dachshunds can be coloured in many different ways. Their coats may be one or two colours, brindled, sable, which is a dark colour over red, or dappled.
Longhaired dachshunds have, as their name suggests, fur that is longer than the smooth or wirehaired dachshunds' coats. This fur is longest around the dog's neck, chest, underside, ears, behind the legs and at the tail. The rest of the fur is not quite as long. The fur is not curly, but sometimes has a slight wave to it. Longhaired dachshunds can be found in all the colours that the smooth coated dachshund can be found in. Reds, creams, browns, blacks, and greys are common coat colours.
Wirehaired dachshunds have a coat that is short, thick, and rough, with a much softer undercoat underneath. This fur is straight and lies flat against the dog's body. The fur of the ear is even shorter and looks smoother. The wirehaired dachshund also has thicker, longer hair under its chin and over its eyes, giving its face a distinct appearance, different from other dachshunds. Wirehaired dachshunds are commonly coloured in what is called wild boar. This is a grizzled, multicoloured appearance. These dogs can also be found in red, black and tan colours.
Standard, Miniature and Toy Dachshunds
The difference between standard and miniature dachshunds is determined by weight. Standard dachshunds should weigh between 7.26 and 14.5kg. after they reach 1 year old. Miniature dachshunds are classified as weighing 4.99kg. or less after reach 1 year in age. The miniature dachshund size is most usually found in the longhair dachshund variety. There is also another dachshund size variety, the toy dachshund, which is not recognised by the American Kennel Club. Toy dachshunds only weigh about 3.63kg., even less than the miniature variety.