Keeping your hound in tip-top shape!


keeping your hound in tip-top shape!

Although IVDD is highly heritable, it is not a simple genetic disorder that can be tested for in the same way as Cord1 PRA or Lafora Disease which are also found in Dachshunds.  It is likely to be a disease caused by multiple genes as well as environmental and lifestyle factors.  (Ref:

Whilst there’s nothing owners can do to treat underlying genetic factors; we as owners can address the environmental and lifestyle triggers that also contribute to this disease.

Diet & supplements form a part of this category.

Diet & IVDD

Focusing on what (and how much) your dog eats, can go a long way toward treating symptoms – reducing pain, inflammation, and the severity of the disease.

The most important thing is to feed your dachshund a complete, well-balanced diet that ensures they maintain the best body condition.

Given the reduced activity required during the rehabilitation period, reducing the quantity of food is sometimes required to reduce the risk of accidental weight gain. This can be achieved by reducing the amount of protein and bulking up with fresh vegetables and fruit such as pumpkin, carrot, apple etc.

The opposite applies if your hound has lost weight, increase the protein. Weighing your dog’s food is a helpful way to manage over and underfeeding. As a guide increase or decrease in increments of 10% until you find the “sweet spot”.

Diets may change during the life stages, but no matter what you feed your dachshund, ensure it has all the nutrients required to ensure a happy, healthy, and active lifestyle. This is even more important when your dog has been affected by IVDD.


Take a moment and run your hands over your Dachshund … can you easily feel the ribs, spine and pelvic bones underneath its coat and soft tissue?

Check out our Weight Chart and if your hound is looking a little on the “chubby” side, it might be time to look at diet and slow down on the extra snacks or cut back the quantity.

Weight guide

Supplements to aid recovery & maintain health

Just like humans, there are natural supplements that can assist our hounds with pain and support their health and mitigate their chances of developing, or worsening, back problems.

Whilst we advise that you perform your own research; DISA has compiled this list of supplements from the recommendations of owners of IVDD hounds

Although IVDD can limit your Dachshund, combining natural supplements with a well-balanced diet can aid healing & recovery.

Surgery and prescription medications are no longer the only solutions.