• If you must have your Dachshund neutered, we recommend that you do not have this done before the dog or bitch is at least 12 months old
  • Many vets are not aware of the current evidence on the potential negative impacts of neutering; particularly early neutering (before 6 months)
  • Because Dachshunds are predisposed to IVDD, it is particularly important that the growth hormones have time to do their vital work on the skeletal frame, ligaments and muscles
  • As a breed, Dachshunds have a relatively low risk of cancers and tumours compared with many other breeds, so the argument for neutering to avoid these health issues is weak 

Be very cautious of making a decision to spay or neuter your Dachshund, particularly before the age of 12 months. There is evidence from our breed surveys that delaying beyond 12 months, e.g. leaving until 18-24 months may also be worth considering in order to reduce IVDD risk. Always discuss this decision with your vet.


The results of our DachsLife 2015 survey showed that the odds of a neutered Dachshund suffering IVDD over the age of 3 is nearly double (1.8x) that of an entire Dachshund.  Neutering under the age of 12 months has higher odds of IVDD than neutering over the age of 1. (Note: "neutering" includes castration of males and spaying of females) When we analysed our survey, we excluded dogs aged up to 3 as these are much less likely to have IVDD and including them would distort the real risks of IVDD. 


This does not mean there is a cause and effect relationship between neutering and IVDD, but it has some parallels with a study of Golden Retrievers that showed neutered animals were more likely to suffer from Hip Dysplasia. Although the mechanism for this is not clear, it is easy to hypothesise about the effects of early neutering on bone and muscle development when an animal is not fully mature. This is discussed in the 2018 paper which analysed the data further.


There is a body of evidence emerging that neutering (and early neutering in particular) has more disadvantages than advantages. 


Read more about whether or not you should spay your bitch, or neuter your dog.


There are lots of useful links to research into the pros and cons of spaying/neutering on the "You did what with your wiener" website.


You may also be interested in the prevalence of mammary tumours and pyometra in female Dachshunds which is relevant when considering a decision to spay a bitch.

Guide to post-operative care for your dog if you have decided to have a spay/neuter operation.

According to the advice on the KC website: "There are no known health benefits to letting your dog have a litter before they are neutered and so shouldn’t play a part in your decision to neuter."

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