AKC Group: Working
Created from German Pinschers, Rottweilers, Beauceron, Pinschers, Greyhounds, English Greyhounds and German Shepherds. German tax collector, Louis Doberman wanted a watchdog that looked like a miniature Pinscher. After Doberman’s death in 1894, this new breed was given his name.
Size: 24 to 28 inches tall; 65 to 90 pounds
Color: Black, red, blue or fawn. All colors have tan markings.
Life span: 10 to 12 years
Health problems: Cancer, bloat, thyroid problems, liver problems, spinal problems.
The Doberman is a powerful, athletic dog that possess great agility, stamina and endurance. These handsome fellas have a close fitting, smooth, short coat. Their ears may be cropped to stand erect, otherwise they will hang down. Despite their reputation, Dobermans are devoted, adoring dogs with plenty of love to give. They are an intelligent, creative quick learner that possess an even temperament. In fact, a Doberman is one of the most intelligent and fastest learning breeds of dog. A Doberman excels at obedience training assuming the training is positive and includes treats and/or praise. They can be stubborn, so he’ll need to know you’re the boss. They do not take kindly to teasing and rough treatment. Dobermans require much physical and mental stimulation so he won’t become bored or restless which will lead to numerous behavioral issues. If you raise your children alongside a Doberman puppy, they’ll be the best of friends. If not, be mindful of your Doberman’s size. Other pets won’t pose a problem, but he may be bossy and dominant and even chase them. (This can be rectified by early socialization as a puppy.) He is reserved with strangers (socialization can help here too). The reason to never be rough or punitive, a Doberman is naturally fearless and protective and will not back down and fight if he’s provoked. His effectiveness as a watchdog and his fearlessness have created the Doberman’s reputation. Make no mistake: a Doberman makes a loving, wonderful pet as long as he is socialized properly as a puppy and trained positively.
With a naturally sleek coat, all you have to do is brush him occasionally. You’ll spend more time sponging him with a damp cloth than you will with a brush. They do shed seasonally so you’ll need to ramp up grooming sessions during these times. A Doberman is not a dog for the meek of heart — or the inexperienced. Their personality is dominant due to their size and strength. They are naturally assertive and, contrary to popular belief, they only become aggressive when trained to be aggressive (and this cannot be said or stressed enough). If you’re afraid or not assertive enough yourself, a Doberman is happy to stay the “alpha” in your relationship.
Early socialization to new people, situations and other animals are imperative. They love activity, don’t be afraid to give them plenty of opportunities to wear themselves out. Whatever you can dish out, they can take it. Training should include all members of the family. All training sessions should include ONLY positive reinforcements. If you end up having any issues training him, you aren’t being assertive enough. If you aren’t being aggressive with your Doberman, THERE IS NO REASON to fear him. When a Doberman is trained with positivity and respect, there is almost no better family dog. They want to be with you and they want to show you their love. A Doberman — again, contrary to popular belief — is not the best dog to live his life outside in your yard away from the human loving interaction he craves.