The Doberman is a very self-confident dog whose rearing and keeping should only be reserved for an experienced dog owner. Its appearance is similar to that of a Rottweiler, but the physique is sleeker. Strength and intelligence are the salient attributes of this aesthetic breed, which makes it predestined as a companion and rescue dog after successful socialization as a family dog and after having passed a work test.
The Dobermann has German roots, to be precise, this elegant and muscular breed comes from Apolda in Thuringia. They bear the name of their breeder Friedrich Louis Dobermann, who was involved in dog breeding for professional reasons. He needed a sharp companion dog for personal protection for his activities as a night police officer and judicial clerk.
Exactly which breeds were mated cannot be traced back in detail. According to tradition, Mr. Dobermann owned a gray mixed breed dog named “Schnuppe”, a shepherd-pinscher mix. He brought this together with a German Shepherd Rottweiler male who had the typical regional black coat with the copper-colored markings. Pointing dogs, pinschers, Weimaraners and pointers were added later. The slim silhouette is due to a greyhound. FL Dobermann first presented his new breed line in 1863 on the regional dog market and the FCI recognized the Dobermann as an independent breed in 1910.
His good qualities as a working and watch dog were quickly publicized and so the vigilant Doberman was used very early as a farm dog and by authorities. As a police dog, he was given the name “Gendarme dog” and on the hunt, the fearless dog successfully fought foxes, wolves and other predatory game. In the two world wars, the Doberman served as a medical, reporting and mine search dog. Even today, the area of operation has hardly changed, the stately dogs are often used in Bundeswehr missions, at customs and for guarding properties. In the civilian sector, the Doberman is a popular guide dog for the blind or helps as a search dog in rescue operations by the fire brigade, the THW or the Red Cross.
The long head is bony and looks wedge-shaped with the moderately developed stop. Medium-sized, high-set, lop-eared ears lie on the front of the face. The oval eyes are dark in color. Typical of molossoid breeds is the broad, strong muzzle, which in the Rottweiler is covered with taut lips. The physique is medium in size and muscular, but not stocky. The entire appearance is sleek and powerful, with the lines flowing elegantly in a short, high-set tail. The cropping of the tail and ears, which was common in the past, is now forbidden in most European countries. The close-fitting fur is typical of the Pinscher type. It has short, hard hair that shines nicely and has no undercoat. The breeding standard requires brown or black as the color with clearly delimited tobacco-colored markings on the cheeks, on the muzzle, on the neck and chest as well as on the ischial tuberosity and legs. Other coat colors are excluded from breeding in Germany: Isabell (a yellowish white), the Merle shade blue and pure white.
Responsible breeders only give a Doberman Pinscher to experienced dog owners. As early as the second month of life, the puppy needs a calm but consistent upbringing, whereby the owner asserts himself with patience and determination. If there is good socialization, the Doberman develops into a loyal and obedient companion who can be integrated as a house dog. In the family there must be fixed structures in terms of hierarchy, otherwise the intelligent Doberman will immediately take a place that is not his due. His basic being is friendly, but characterized by a high level of distrust of strangers. He only accepts one person as his guide. Due to its pronounced territorial requirements, it must slowly be accustomed to other pets. Attending a dog school and, later, professional training are therefore recommended in order to steer your dominant behavior in the right direction in good time. Neglecting the clear line in socialization involuntarily leads to problems, so that many dogs are deported to the animal shelter by overwhelmed owners. For this reason, the Dobermann is classified as dangerous in the state of Brandenburg and is listed as a dog. The keeping is only permitted with a negative certificate.
The Doberman needs a lot of exercise and exercise, he is too spirited to be kept indoors. He can release his enormous energy in demanding dog sports, whereby agility, obedience and the versatility test for working dogs (VPG) are particularly suitable. The so-called wobbler syndrome is one of the above-average breed-specific diseases. It is caused by a disc damage with subsequent nerve damage in the area of the cervical spine, which manifests itself in unsafe movements. Males are affected twice as often as females. In addition, Doberman cardiomyopathy can occur, a serious heart disease and hip dysplasia (HD) can also be found.
The Doberman Pinscher at a glance
Origin: Germany FCI Breed Standard 143, Group 2, Section 1: Molossoids, Schnauzers, Pinschers Size: medium-sized Height at the withers: Male: 68 – 72 cm, female 63 – 68 cm Weight: 40 – 45 kg, female 32 – 35 kg Coat color: dark brown or black, Each with tan-colored markings Eye colors: dark brown Use: Protection and watchdog, rescue dog, service dog Character: powerful, fearless, self-confident Health risks: Vestibular syndrome, heart disease, hip dysplasia (HD) Life expectancy: approx. 10 – 11 years
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