Dachshunds not only can jump but they like to accomplish that.
Possibly it’s excitement, because they wish to get your attention, or because they’re daredevils that enjoy the joys of it.
But is it bad for Dachshunds to leap?
You’ve probably heard the recommendation 100 times – jumping is dangerous for Dachshunds because they are going to hurt their back.
But is it true or simply outdated information perpetuated on the web?
In this text, I explain a bit more in regards to the causes of back injury in Dachshunds after which present the professionals and cons of letting your Dachshund jump.
Disclaimer: I’m not a veterinarian. I’m only a passionate Dachshund owner who has been studying Dachshund back injuries since 2016 sharing her knowledge and experience.
Will Jumping Cause My Dachshund to Injure Their Back?
The first reason for back injury in Dachshunds shouldn’t be jumping.
Nearly all of back injuries are attributable to a genetic disease called Intervertebral Disk Disease (IVDD).
IVDD causes the spinal disks – the flexible cushions in between vertebrae – to dry out, harden (calcify), and deteriorate.
In the event that they change into brittle enough, they’ll rupture, or herniate, and put pressure on the encompassing nerves.
Pressure on the nerves could cause severe pain, weakness, paralysis, and plenty of other symptoms.
While it’s true that any impact on the spine could cause a compromised disk to rupture, jumping shouldn’t be the cause. IVDD is.
But this compromised spinal disk was likely going to rupture anyway. It’s only a matter of when, not if.
Should You Let Your Dachshund Jump?
Whether you permit your Dachshund to leap or not is a private alternative.
As Dachshund owners, we want to weigh the risks of jumping against the advantages and choose where we stand on the difficulty.
Here is a few information to assist you make that alternative.
The chance of letting your Dachshund jump
I’ve already said that, while jumping won’t cause a back injury, it might probably hasten a disk rupture.
If a spinal disk is significantly damaged from IVDD, it is going to likely rupture regardless of what your Dachshund does or doesn’t do.
Nevertheless, if a disk is just a bit compromised, it could not cause noticeable symptoms in your Dachshund’s life or only very minor ones.
If that very same disk takes a big impact, like could be attributable to jumping, it is feasible that the disk ruptures when it may not otherwise have.
It’s also possible that the disk was going to rupture anyway, but just a bit.
Small ruptures often still require a vet visit and conservative treatment, but, if caught early, surgery can often be avoided.
The force on the spine attributable to jumping is great, the degraded disk can rupture in a giant way, causing a grade 4 or 5 injury (the worst) and requiring surgery.
The advantages of letting your Dachshund jump
]Consider it or not, there could also be advantages to letting your Dachshund jump.
The primary is quality of life.
Simply because Dachshunds are vulnerable to back issues, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be allowed to live a standard dog life.
But, since we’re primarily concerned with back problems and ruptured discs in this text, let’s discuss that in additional detail.
The DachsLife2015 survey found that healthy Dachshunds over the age of three that were allowed to leap on and off furniture each day had lower odds of IVDD than those not allowed to do that (source).
Now, even the organization that did the study admits this shouldn’t be definitive proof that jumping is sweet for Dachshunds nevertheless it definitely sheds recent light on the difficulty.
Because it was previously thought these little dogs mustn’t jump in any respect, this result indicates that more research must be done on this area.
Personally, I feel the act of jumping on this study is a sign of a dog’s overall activity level – that Dachshunds allowed to leap are probably more energetic generally.
The identical study above reported that Dachshunds that were considered to be highly or moderately energetic (1+ hours a day) by their owners were at a decreased odds of IVDD in comparison with dogs considered under no circumstances energetic (lower than half-hour a day).
Regular high or moderate activity, which can include jumping, helps to strengthen the spine-supporting muscles, thus minimizing the danger of spinal injury.
When my Dachshund Gretel injured her back and was diagnosed with IVDD, she was occurring several 45+ minute walks per week and one hike per week of 5 or more miles.
The veterinarian told me that her back injury was likely so mild, and that she had a greater probability of full recovery, because she was fit, strong, and never obese.
Prone to sounding like a broken record, keep in mind that the first reason for Dachshund back issues is IVDD, a genetic disease.
Nevertheless, exercise is an identified lifestyle factor that may influence the frequency and severity of back injuries and there’s evidence that a high level of activity is said to fewer, or milder, back injuries.
What when you know your dog has IVDD?
Unfortunately, there isn’t any test for IVDD.
Currently, the one technique to diagnose the disease is on your Dachshund to suffer a disk rupture and be diagnosed.
Largely, the identical pros and cons of jumping stated above apply.
Some Dachshunds, like my Gretel, get better from the back injury and return to life as normal without further issue (or further significant issue – flare ups are possible).
Nevertheless, some Dachshunds, presumably with multiple disks which have severely deteriorated from IVDD, proceed to have back problems for his or her whole life regardless of what the owner does to try to protect them.
It’s just bad luck. Or, more accurately, bad genetics.
In case you know your Dachshund has IVDD, they usually fit into the latter category of Dachshund who steadily experience back issues, it’s reasonable to wish to limit their activity.
But it surely’s still true that keeping spine-supporting muscles strong and versatile could be very essential.
Due to this fact, when you don’t let your Dachshund exercise quite a bit, potentially including jumping on and off things, it might be a profit to proceed IVDD physical therapy exercised long-term to assist protect the back.
Summary of pros and cons
Letting your Dachshund jump or not is as much as you.There are advantages and risks related to it.
A healthy Dachshund who’s used to vigorous exercise and is well-muscled, or is being conditioned to realize that level of it, needs to be able to tolerating the conventional activities of day-to-day living, including jumping.
While it’s possible that jumping can influence a disk rupture, it’s not the first cause.
There are two essential things to notice here when you determine to let your Dachshund jump though.
One: Dachshunds which are commonly energetic, at a healthy weight, and with strong muscles are at the bottom risk of injury from jumping.
Two: there’s a limit to how high any Dachshund needs to be allowed to leap.
How High Can a Dachshund Jump Safely?
There is no such thing as a scientifically determined, or commonly understood, limit to the peak a Dachshund can safely jump.
So I’m just going to share my educated commentary and private determination here.
When a Dachshund jumps off of a small ledge, there’s little impact.
In case you watch your Dachshund jump off a small step, it’s very likely that their front feet will hit the bottom before their back feet even leave it.
This, essentially, turns the “jump” right into a step (read more about Dachshunds and stairs here).
As the peak of the ledge increases, a Dachshund has to stretch further and further.
Eventually, their motion will turn right into a real leap or jump.
I find that if my Dachshunds step off something that’s taller than they’re long from front legs to back, they are going to jump.
Note: this starts to occur a bit before this height is reached.
Since my miniature Dachshunds are roughly 14 inches long from base of neck, above the front legs, to the bottom of their tail, above the back legs, anything over about 12 inches tall causes them to leap.
Since my Dachshunds are very energetic and fit, I allow a bit little bit of jumping.
Nevertheless, if a ledge is taller than 18 inches, I find that too dangerous so I lift them up and down.
The way to Prevent Your Dachshund from Jumping
Whether you must prevent your Dachshund from jumping altogether, or you must prevent jumping off anything higher than 12-18 inches, the following pointers will assist you keep their feet on the bottom.
There are 4 essential ways to discourage your Dachshund from jumping.
Train your Dachshund not to leap on people
It’s easier said than done, nevertheless it’s definitely possible to show your Dachshund not to leap on people, including guests at your own home.
Regardless that it shouldn’t be off a ledge, jumping on people can still put impact on the spine.
Plus, your guest may enjoy their visit to your own home more in case your Dachshund doesn’t jump on them after they arrive.
In case your Dachshund isn’t jumping up on people after they get excited, they could be less more likely to jump elsewhere.
Gate off furniture and use ramps
Most furniture is taller than 12 inches and a few beds could be upwards of 30 inches high.
It’s probably a foul idea for any Dachshund to leap off something over 30 inches tall.
A dog ramp may also help your Dachshund off furniture without jumping.
Ideally, you’ll give you the chance to coach your Dachshund to make use of the ramp the entire time but that is nearly never effective in my experience.
In case you aren’t sure your Dachshund will all the time use the ramp, you might be left with two options.
Completely block off access to the furniture when you’re not supervising with a gate, by closing a door, or by placing something on the couch that can prevent your Dachshund from getting on it.
Force your Dachshund to make use of the ramp by placing it on the furniture in a location where your dog can easily access it and block off all other entry or egress points.
Furniture could be blocked off with tall pet gates, toddler bed rails, or similar.
In relation to my couch, I went with option #2. Read this text to see my jump-preventing couch setup.
In regard to my bed, I put the mattress and box spring on the ground like a low platform bed.
Train your Dachshund to attend
It is feasible to coach your Dachshund to attend until you lift them up or down using the “wait” command.
You should use this command contained in the house when your Dachshund wants on or off the couch, chair, or bed.
You may as well use it outside like we do once we are mountaineering.
If we approach a ledge that’s taller than I would like my Dachshunds to leap on or off of, I tell them to attend after which lift them up or down.
Dachshund back problems are primarily attributable to a genetic disease called Intervertebral Disk Disease (IVDD), although there are environmental aspects that may influence the frequency and severity of back injuries.
It’s suspected that one in all these lifestyle aspects is vigorous exercise, or the shortage of it, which incorporates jumping.
It’s as much as you to make a decision what you might be comfortable with, what your Dachshund is able to, and the way high you’ll allow them to jump.
In case you’ve just brought a puppy home, and you already know you must discourage jumping on furniture and other people, start training immediately to show good lifetime habits.
Even in case your Dachshund has jumped prior to now but now you must teach them to not, know you could teach an adult dog recent commands and habits.
One final, parting thought I would like to depart you with:
Jumping up on something causes less impact in your Dachshund’s spine so it’s possible you’ll determine to only let your Dachshund jump up on things but not down.
Nevertheless, it is crucial to notice that the first danger with jumping is falling and twisting the spine, which might occur whether a Dachshund is jumping up on something or down from it.