Are Dachshunds Prone to Seizures?

Last Updated on April 17, 2024 by admin

In this article, we will explore whether Dachshunds are prone to seizures. If you’re a proud owner of a Dachshund or thinking of getting one, understanding their health concerns is essential. Seizures can be alarming and potentially dangerous for any dog, but are Dachshunds more susceptible to this condition? Join us as we delve into the topic and shed light on the potential risks and factors that may contribute to seizures in Dachshunds. So, let’s uncover the truth and ensure the well-being of our furry friends!


Dachshunds are known for their long bodies and short legs, but did you know that they may also be prone to seizures? Seizures are a neurological condition that can affect dogs of all breeds, and Dachshunds are no exception. In this article, we will explore the prevalence of seizures in Dachshunds, their causes, symptoms, and treatment options. We will also provide tips on how to recognize and manage seizures in your beloved Dachshund, as well as promoting seizure prevention. So, let’s dive into the fascinating world of Dachshunds and seizures!

Understanding Dachshunds

Origin and breed characteristics

Dachshunds, also known as Wiener Dogs or Sausage Dogs, originated in Germany and were originally bred for hunting small game like badgers and rabbits. They have a distinct appearance with their long bodies, deep chests, and short legs. Dachshunds come in different coat types, including smooth, wirehaired, and longhaired, each with their own unique charm. These playful and friendly dogs make great companions for individuals and families alike.

Different types of Dachshunds

Dachshunds come in two sizes: standard and miniature. Standard Dachshunds typically weigh between 16 and 32 pounds, while miniature Dachshunds weigh under 11 pounds. Additionally, Dachshunds can have different coat patterns, including dapple, piebald, and brindle. Whether you prefer a standard or miniature Dachshund, or a specific coat pattern, there’s a Dachshund for everyone!

Common health issues in Dachshunds

Like any other breed, Dachshunds may be prone to certain health issues. Some of the common health problems seen in Dachshunds include intervertebral disc disease (IVDD), obesity, dental issues, and, of course, seizures. While not all Dachshunds will experience seizures, it is important for owners to be aware of this potential health concern and know how to recognize and respond to them.

What Are Seizures?

Definition and causes

Seizures, also known as convulsions or fits, are sudden disruptions in the normal electrical activity of the brain. They can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetic factors, underlying medical conditions, brain abnormalities, or exposure to toxins. Seizures occur when there is a temporary abnormal surge of electrical activity in the brain, leading to a range of symptoms that can vary in severity.

Types of seizures

There are different types of seizures that can affect dogs, including focal seizures, generalized seizures, and cluster seizures. Focal seizures, also known as partial seizures, typically involve only one part of the brain and may cause localized symptoms such as twitching or involuntary movements in a specific area of the body. Generalized seizures, on the other hand, involve the entire brain and can lead to loss of consciousness, muscle stiffness, or violent convulsions. Cluster seizures occur when a dog experiences multiple seizures within a short period of time.

Symptoms of seizures

The symptoms of seizures in Dachshunds can vary depending on the type and severity of the seizure. Common signs of seizures may include involuntary muscle contractions, loss of consciousness, drooling, foaming at the mouth, confusion, disorientation, urination or defecation, and repetitive behaviors. It is important to note that while seizures can be frightening to witness, they are usually not painful for the dog. If you suspect your Dachshund is having a seizure, it is important to remain calm and provide a safe environment.

Prevalence of Seizures in Dachshunds

Research and studies

While exact statistics on the prevalence of seizures in Dachshunds are limited, studies have indicated that Dachshunds may be at a higher risk compared to some other breeds. One study conducted in the United Kingdom found that Dachshunds had a higher incidence of seizures compared to Labrador Retrievers. However, more research is needed to fully understand the prevalence and risk factors associated with seizures in Dachshunds.

Genetic predisposition

Genetics is believed to play a role in the development of seizures in Dachshunds. Certain genetic mutations or abnormalities may make Dachshunds more susceptible to seizures. Responsible breeders take this into consideration and strive to breed from healthy bloodlines with a lower risk of genetic disorders, including seizures.

Environmental factors

In addition to genetic predisposition, environmental factors can also contribute to the development of seizures in Dachshunds. Exposure to certain toxins, such as pesticides or household chemicals, can increase the risk of seizures. Stress, changes in routine, or trauma can also trigger seizures in susceptible dogs. Providing a stable and safe environment for your Dachshund is crucial to their overall well-being and seizure prevention.

Recognizing Seizures in Dachshunds

Visible signs and behaviors

Recognizing seizures in Dachshunds can be challenging, especially if you have never witnessed a seizure before. During a seizure, your Dachshund may exhibit visible signs such as muscle twitching, shaking, or convulsions. They may also display abnormal behaviors like pacing, circling, or staring into space. It is essential to pay attention to these signs and report them to your veterinarian if you suspect your Dachshund is experiencing seizures.

Differentiating seizures from other conditions

Sometimes, certain behaviors displayed by Dachshunds may be mistaken for seizures when they are actually due to other medical conditions. For example, fainting episodes, called syncope, can mimic seizures but have different causes. Seizure-like behaviors can also be a symptom of low blood sugar levels or vestibular disease. Consulting with a veterinarian is the best way to determine whether your Dachshund is experiencing seizures or another medical issue.

Keeping seizure journals

If you suspect your Dachshund is prone to seizures, it can be helpful to keep a seizure journal to track the episodes. Record the date, time, duration, and characteristics of each seizure. Note any potential triggers, such as changes in routine or exposure to certain stimuli. This information can assist your veterinarian in diagnosing and developing an appropriate treatment plan for your Dachshund.

Diagnosing Seizures in Dachshunds

Physical examination and medical history

To diagnose seizures in Dachshunds, a veterinarian will typically begin by conducting a comprehensive physical examination. They will assess your Dachshund’s overall health and look for any potential underlying causes of the seizures. A detailed medical history, including a discussion of the frequency, duration, and characteristics of the seizures, will also be important for accurate diagnosis.

Additional diagnostic tests

In addition to the physical examination, your veterinarian may recommend additional diagnostic tests to further evaluate your Dachshund’s condition. These tests may include blood work to check for underlying health issues, such as liver or kidney problems. Imaging studies, like an MRI or CT scan, may be necessary to assess the structure and function of the brain. By ruling out other potential causes, your veterinarian can focus on a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment options.

Visiting a veterinarian or neurologist

If your Dachshund is experiencing seizures, it is crucial to seek veterinary care as soon as possible. Your veterinarian may refer you to a veterinary neurologist who specializes in diagnosing and treating neurological conditions, including seizures. These specialists have advanced training and expertise in neurology and can offer comprehensive care for your Dachshund.

Treatment Options for Seizures

Medication and anticonvulsants

Once a diagnosis of seizures is confirmed, your veterinarian or veterinary neurologist may prescribe medication to help manage the condition. Anticonvulsant medications, such as phenobarbital or potassium bromide, are commonly prescribed to control and reduce the frequency and severity of seizures. It is essential to follow your veterinarian’s instructions regarding medication dosage, administration, and potential side effects.

Lifestyle changes and seizure triggers

In addition to medication, certain lifestyle changes can help manage seizures in Dachshunds. Avoiding potential seizure triggers, such as stress or exposure to toxins, is crucial. Maintaining a routine and providing a stable environment can also help reduce the frequency of seizures. Your veterinarian may provide additional guidance on managing your Dachshund’s lifestyle to minimize seizure occurrences.

Alternative therapies

In some cases, alternative therapies may be used in conjunction with traditional medications to manage seizures in Dachshunds. These can include herbal supplements, acupuncture, or dietary modifications. It is important to consult with your veterinarian before implementing any alternative therapies and to ensure they are used in conjunction with conventional treatment methods.

Living with a Dachshund Prone to Seizures

Creating a safe environment

Living with a Dachshund prone to seizures requires creating a safe environment to minimize the risk of injury during a seizure. Remove any sharp objects or hazardous obstacles from your Dachshund’s surroundings. Consider providing soft bedding and cushioning to help protect them during a seizure. It may also be helpful to install baby gates or create designated safe zones to prevent your Dachshund from accessing dangerous areas during a seizure.

Emergency seizure response

When your Dachshund is experiencing a seizure, it is important to remain calm and avoid any sudden movements that could startle them. Do not restrain your Dachshund during a seizure, as this may cause injury or increase their stress. Clear the immediate area to prevent accidental injuries, and time the duration of the seizure. If the seizure lasts longer than five minutes, seek immediate veterinary attention.

Supporting your Dachshund’s overall health

While seizures can be managed with medication and lifestyle adjustments, it is crucial to support your Dachshund’s overall health to minimize the frequency and severity of seizures. This includes providing a balanced diet, regular exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight. Additionally, keeping up with routine vaccinations, regular veterinary check-ups, and dental care can help ensure your Dachshund’s overall well-being.

Promoting Seizure Prevention in Dachshunds

Selective breeding practices

Responsible breeders play an essential role in promoting seizure prevention in Dachshunds. By selectively breeding from healthy bloodlines with a lower risk of genetic disorders, including seizures, breeders can help reduce the incidence of seizures in future generations. If you are considering adding a Dachshund to your family, it is crucial to choose a reputable breeder who prioritizes the health and well-being of their dogs.

Regular veterinary check-ups

Regular veterinary check-ups are an important part of promoting seizure prevention in Dachshunds. Routine examinations allow your veterinarian to monitor your Dachshund’s overall health and detect any potential underlying conditions early on. It also provides an opportunity to discuss any concerns or changes in your Dachshund’s behavior that may indicate an increased risk of seizures.

Managing potential triggers

Managing potential triggers is another critical aspect of promoting seizure prevention in Dachshunds. Identify and avoid any known triggers, such as stress, abrupt changes in routine, exposure to toxins, or certain foods. By minimizing your Dachshund’s exposure to these triggers, you can reduce the likelihood of seizures occurring. Always consult with your veterinarian for guidance on managing potential triggers specific to your Dachshund’s needs.


Dachshunds may have a predisposition to seizures, but with proper knowledge, care, and veterinary support, these episodes can be successfully managed. Understanding the signs and symptoms of seizures in Dachshunds, seeking timely veterinary care, and following the prescribed treatment plan are crucial for your Dachshund’s overall well-being. By creating a safe environment, managing potential triggers, and promoting seizure prevention, you can provide your Dachshund with the love and support they need to live a happy and healthy life. Remember, you are not alone in this journey, and there are resources available to help you navigate the world of Dachshunds and seizures.