The Doberman Pinscher is a sturdy, athletic, and powerful dog, with great agility, stamina, and endurance. These handsome dogs have a close fitting, smooth, short coat, and ears can be cropped to stand erect or left handing naturally. The hard, sleek coat of the Doberman Pinscher can vary in color and the coloring of these dogs includes fawn, blue, brown, black, with rust colored markings on the head and legs. The height of the Doberman Pinscher is around 22-28 inches, and the weight 65-85 pounds.
Doberman Pinscher Temperament
Proud, noble, and alert, the Doberman Pinscher is a dog with plenty of devotion and love to give. These dutiful dogs tend to have an even, well balanced temperament, and are intelligent, creative, and quick to learn. The Doberman Pinscher excels in obedience training when it is positive and includes treats and lots of praise. They are one of the most intelligent and fastest learning of all breeds. These dogs are best suited to those who can establish themselves as "boss" from day one, as this breed can be strong willed and stubborn. These dogs definitely do not take kindly to being teased or treated roughly. It is important to ensure that you provide the Doberman Pinscher with plenty of physical and mental stimulation, otherwise he can get bored and restless, which can result in behavioral issues.
The Doberman Pinscher tends to get on well with children when raised with them, although you should be mindful that his large size can result in problems when younger children such as toddlers are around. He also gets on okay with other pets, although he may be bossy and dominant with them, quickly establishing himself as the leader of the pack. He may chase smaller animals such as cats or rabbits due to his high prey drive, but this can be curbed by socializing him with your household pets early on. The Doberman Pinscher can be reserved with strangers so plenty of socialization from a young age is important. He is fearless, powerful and protective of his loved ones. He will fight if provoked, and he definitely wont back down (unless trained to), making him an effective guard dog.
The grooming requirements for the Doberman Pinscher are pretty low, and all that is required to keep the coat looking good is an occasional brushing. You can also use a damp cloth occasionally to keep the short coat looking glossy and conditioned. These dogs are medium shedders, and may shed more heavily on a seasonal basis, which means that you may need to step up the grooming during these times.
The Doberman Pinscher is a fairly new breed. It is believed that they were created by using German Pinschers, Rottweilers, Beauceron, Pinschers, Greyhounds, English Greyhounds and German Shepherds. German tax collector Louis Dobermann created the breed to be a watchdog, but he liked the look of the Miniature Pinscher. So, the Doberman Pinscher was created to look like the Miniature Pinscher breed, but with the size and strength of a watchdog. So, the belief that the Miniature Pinscher is a smaller sized version of the Doberman Pinscher is incorrect. The new dog was given Dobermann's name after his death in 1894.
It is said that Dobermann wished to create a watchdog breed because as a tax collector, he was forced to travel in some very dangerous areas and wanted a dog to protect him. In addition to being a tax collector, he was a dog breeder on the side, so he had access to dogs for breeding purposes. The Doberman Pinscher was presented at its first dog show in 1876.
In 1976 a white Pinscher bitch was born. She was bred to her son, who was also bred to his litter sisters. This tight breeding was performed to continue the creation of the white color. The white color is caused by a genetic mutation which prevents pigment proteins from being manufactured. The White Dobermans had a following, as some people were very attracted to this albino coloring, and for awhile there were some breeding programs dedicated to increasing the numbers of this variety of Doberman, because they were in great demand.
However, it was discovered after a time that the same genetic mutation that prevents color from developing also makes the dog more prone to disease and causes abnormal development of the retina, which means the dog must be protected from the sun. Today, breeding programs for the white Doberman are not encouraged. However, there are some advocates of the white Doberman who insist that these dogs can be quite healthy.
The Doberman is a very intelligent breed, but they do need extensive training. They have a dominant personality and must be taught early on that you are the "alpha dog". In addition, due to their size and strength, it is imperative that their owners be able to handle them. They are assertive but not aggressive unless they are trained to be such. However, if they sense that you fear them or that you cannot show dominance over them, they are quite happy to be the dominant one in your household. If you have other pets, it's likely that your Doberman will be the dominant animal in your home.
They are energetic, and will be happiest if you give them regular opportunity to run off this energy. He should be thoroughly socialized at an early age so that he is comfortable around strangers.
The Doberman does not need guard dog training. They are naturally loyal and protective of their families. Too much "guard dog training" may cause them to be overly dominant or aggressive. By nature they will be protective, but will not attack unless they truly believe there to be the need. This natural temperament is what you want to keep.
Some owners run into training issues with Dobermans because they are afraid of them. It is imperative that every member of the family be taught to handle the dog with confidence, or the dog will become dominant. Training should be through positive reinforcement and should include the entire family. If you spend time with your Doberman and take the time to train him appropriately, you'll find no better family dog. They will want to be with the family and will require regular interaction. This is not a dog that can be relegated to living alone in the back yard.
The life expectancy of the Doberman Pinscher is around 8-12 years, and there are a number of health problems and disorder linked to the breed. This includes cancer, bloat, thyroid problems, liver problems, and spinal problems. The parents of the Doberman Pinscher puppy should have OFA certificates.