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Doberman Pinscher Breed Overview | Temperament, Training & Care Tips

Apr 20,2021

Are you thinking of getting yourself a beautiful Doberman Pinscher as a Service Dog? Here are some things you should know about this amazing breed before making your decision. 


History

The Doberman Pinscher originated in Germany during the late 19th century. They were developed by Karl Friedrich Louis Dobermann, a tax collector, dog pound owner, and dog catcher. He wanted a fierce dog that would accompany him on his rounds, which of course ended up being the Doberman. It isn’t clear what breeds the Doberman consists of, but they are believed to be made up of Rottweiler, German Pinscher, Great Dane, Greyhound, German Shepherd, and more. The choice of dogs was based on the characteristics Karl Friedrick Louis Dobermann wanted the breed to have. 

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This breed began to gain popularity around the 2nd World War when they were used as guard dogs. Now, they are the 17th most popular dog breed in the U.S, according to American Kennel Club. 


About

Although these dogs may seem intimidating to some people, you can’t help but admire their beauty. They are one of the most elegant and strong dog breeds in the whole world, with a sleek and muscular body. Their coat is short, shiny and black, red, blue, fawn, white, and sometimes albino. Some also have rust marking on them, whereas others are purely one color. 

The males usually weigh around 75-100 pounds, whereas females weigh around 60-90 pounds. Males stand at 26-28 inches tall at the shoulder and females between 24-26 inches. They are part of the working dog breed group and they also have a life expectancy of 10-13 years.

Some people crop their Dobermans ears and tail, but is this necessary? A lot of people are against it and claim it is wrong and cruel. It is also banned in many places across the globe. The reason people do this is when the dog's ears are erect, it makes it easier for them to locate where a sound is coming from, making them better watchdogs or protectors. People also do this because they like the way it makes their Doberman look. It gives the dog a much more intimidating, fierce look. So, no it is not a necessity to crop a Doberman’s ears, but there are benefits too. 


Doberman’s Temperament and Personality

The Doberman Pinscher is an incredibly intelligent and active dog. They need plenty of mental and physical exercise on a daily basis. They are natural guardians and protective due to the breeds they are made up of, which is exactly what Karl Friedrick Louis Dobermann wanted. They will not hesitate to protect their family if they feel they are under a threat, but will not become aggressive until necessary. Instead of biting or attacking a threat, they tend to stand in front of their owners and bark, standing upright to scare any potential danger away.

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Their temperament can be affected by many things, including socialization, hereditary, and training. It is highly advised that you socialize your Doberman puppy, or any puppy, at a young age so they are used to being around other people and other dogs. This will help avoid any anxiety or aggression towards strangers and other animals at an older age. 

Dobermans do not need any special training to be protective of their owners. They have a strong eagerness to please and are really affectionate. They form an amazing bond with their family, but they grow an extraordinary bond with the one person in their family that they believe to be their owner. They tend to become very protective over this person and become very attached. Although a lot of people view this as a good thing, this can cause the dog to be very prone to separation anxiety as soon as their favorite person leaves the house or they are left alone. To avoid this, other people in your house should grow bonds with the Doberman, such as taking it on walks or playing with it. This will show your dog that their favorite person leaving isn’t a bad thing!

Dobies are a joy to live with. They make excellent family companions and they have a calm and quiet temper. They absolutely adore children, but you shouldn’t leave them unaccompanied with any small children as they are larger dogs. They could accidentally knock over a small child and cause an incident, even though it was most likely an accident. They also get along great with other pets, mainly if they grow up together. They work great as Service Dogs as they work to please and also care for their owner more than anything. 

Overall, the Doberman is a really calm and gentle dog that loves nothing more than cuddling up to their owner and following them around the house everywhere they go. They are devoted and deeply loving dogs. 


Caring for a Doberman

These are very easy dog breed to care for. Since their coats are short and they are very clean, they only need to be groomed occasionally. They also only need a bath every 2 months or so, or if they get dirty. Brush them at least weekly and brush their teeth at least twice a week. The Dobie is also very sensitive to cold weather and they need good shelter during the winter. They love getting cozy in front of the fireplace too.

Since these dogs need lots of activity, they need lots of food too. Approximately 3 cups a day, split into 2 meals that consist of 1 ½ cups. They will require a high level of fat and protein if they are very active. 


What Diseases Are Dobermans Prone To?

Dobermans are quite healthy dogs, but of course like every dog they are prone to certain health conditions. Not every Doberman will get one of these but it is important to have a check-up with your vet every 6 months to be safe. 

 • Wobblers Syndrome- this is a disease of the spine within the neck that results in poor transmission of nerve signals between the brain and the body. The average lifespan of a dog with Wobblers is approximately 4 years. 

 • Cardiomyopathy- this is a fatal genetic heart disorder that affects the heart muscle's ability to contract. This leads to congestive heart failure or sudden death in adult dogs.

 • Albinism- this is a genetic condition that causes a dog to have pink skin and nose and have light eyes. The dog's appearance will be white. These dogs are really sensitive to sunlight and can suffer from a variety of different heart problems, including cancer and eye problems. Albino dogs should not be bred. 

 • Hip Dysplasia- a condition where the thigh bone doesn’t sit right into the hip joint. This can cause a lot of pain for some dogs.

 • Von Willebrand's Disease- a blood disorder that interferes with the blood's ability to clot. The main symptom is excessive bleeding after an injury. Other symptoms include nosebleeds, gum bleeding, and bleeding in the stomach. There is unfortunately no cure.

There are much more health conditions associated with Dobermans so it is essential that you have regular vet checkups. 


Training Your Doberman Pinscher

It is advised you start training your Doberman puppy as soon as you get them! Even just the basic commands go a long way. It may be a good idea to get your Doberman puppy into a training class when he is about 10 weeks old or so. You should always use positive reinforcement when training as this breed is so eager to please its owners. They love hearing they are a good boy and they are making their owner happy. 

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Dobermans are very active dogs and they need lots of exercise mentally and physically daily. They need to be walked every day. They love to go on adventurous hikes with their families too. If you are not active and are not willing to be, this isn’t the dog for you. Dobermans also do really well with agility training and enjoy competing in dog competitions. 

When training Dobermans, do not use shock collars or any aggressiveness towards your dog as this will either make them very timid and scared or cause them to become vicious and angry. Reward-based training works especially well with Dobermans as it helps connect a positive connection between the action that is being trained and the treat. 

You must show your Dobie that you are the boss and they must obey your rules. Dobermans grow incredible bonds with their so-called leader, and they will be trained much easier when they have a boss. if they don't believe anyone in their households is the master, they will be much harder to train. They may also take it upon themselves to be masters. 

Dobermans make amazing Service Dogs as they are part of the working dog breed group. They love lots of mental exercises and they love helping people, of course, they are going to make a great Service Dog! They may be more suitable for helping someone with mobility, as the Doberman needs exercise. 

This breed should have a larger fenced area where they are trained often. It is also a good idea to incorporate them in lots of obedience training for the best results. 


How Much Does A Doberman Cost?

Expect to pay between $1500 to $2500 for a beautiful Doberman Pinscher. A Dobie being sold under $1000 dollars is very unusual and a red flag. Show quality Dobies are closer to $2500. In Europe, a Doberman is much more expensive and can cost up to $3000.