Breed Spotlight; Doberman


The Doberman is an older breed that originated in Germany and can trace its history back to the late 1800`s. At that time, they were bred to be a guard dog for tax collectors, and so had to be fit and active as well as having a strong protective drive. The breed is generally classified as a working dog as its original purpose was to protect, although today they are often kept as a companion animal.

These dogs come in 3 different colour types. They can be, the typical black and tan, brown and tan, (known as the red Dobermans), or dark grey and tan (also known as the blue Doberman). Their tails are traditionally docked at birth, although with trends changing slowly in the show world for other breeds with docked tails, that may change in the future. The normal ear on a Doberman is a large floppy ear which looks very different from what is considered to be the typical ear of this breed (upright and pointed). I personally prefer the natural ear on this breed as it does tone down the severity of the look and shows their goofy side better. 🙂

Dobermans have a reputation for being aggressive, intimidating dogs; and while that may have been more generally true when the breed was first started, it is generally thought that today`s Doberman is a more even-tempered animal. From personal experience, I have found these dogs to be very independent, intelligent, (some times too intelligent!) and strong-willed. While I have met some who are aggressive, the aggression generally stems from something else, usually fear. I don`t recommend this breed for a first time dog owner. This breed is very sensitive and knows very well when his/her owner is not in charge. This is a breed that needs to know without a doubt where his/her place in the family is, otherwise, they have a tendency to take control of the pack/family.

This particular breed also has some health issues that tend to crop up. The most common issues they tend to develop are heart disease and von Willebrand’s disease. Von Willebrand’s disease is a bleeding disorder that affects a few different breeds. It is genetic and it can be tested for in the parents. Reputable breeders will test their breeding stock to ensure that the trait is not being passed on to their puppies. For further information about these conditions and any other concerns, please ask your veterinarian.

Thanks for reading,