Dobermans are large, elegant and muscular dogs with a solid yet graceful presence. The loving and protective traits of a Doberman's behavior make it the ideal breed to be a tireless guard. Gifted with inexhaustible energy levels, a Doberman will apply them to ensure everything is good around the house and loved ones. A Doberman can be hardheaded and dominant therefore it requires a master that can be the undisputed leader and provide consistent training. The worst flaw in a Doberman is the inability to socialize with other dogs. Other than this, a Doberman is a generous and loving type of dog that doesn't deserve the reputation of fierce animal, unless it is raised to be vicious.
Characteristics accepts by FCI:
Dobermans are quite large dogs (although not giant) and can reach 70 cm at the withers. The build of a Doberman is muscular yet elegant and lean.
A Doberman puppy can cost between 700 and 1000 €, depending on the pedigree. Any lower than this should raise suspicions as it could mean the puppy farm is not reliable. All dog breeds should only be purchased from trustworthy breeders that carefully select the parents however, this is even more relevant with larger breeds that have a potential of being "difficult", such as the Doberman Pinscher. Best not to save money. Other than the initial cost, this type of dog doesn't eat much, it is generally healthy and doesn't require professional grooming making the Doberman a rather inexpensive breed.
A Doberman doesn't require excessive expenditures
The Doberman is an extremely energetic breed that loves being active and using its brain, especially when engaged in what comes more instinctive: guarding. Ideally, a Doberman will be able to move between the house and the garden to patrol the property as well as being amongst the family members. Apartment life is not the best choice for this highly active type of dog however a Doberman can adapt to it when walked often.
Not quite suitable to live in apartments
The Doberman's reputation as a cold and vicious breed is really unfair. On the contrary, Dobermans love their family and crave companionship and care from it. This is why a Doberman Pinscher is not quite suitable to be left alone. Whether you choose a Doberman as a guard dog or because you're looking for its companionship, you'll have to spend lots of time with your pet in order to provide consistent training. Sadly, some owners believe this breed to be some kind of robot and leave their dog to guard without taking much care of it. A torture for such a loving breed.
A Doberman Pinscher doesn't tolerate being alone
Unfortunately, Dobermans have a reputation of being aggressive which then makes people act in a defensive way around them. Such reputation is partly unjustified since a well raised and properly trained dog will never be aggressive unless it senses a threat towards itself or the family. Nevertheless, the Doberman Pinscher is not an easy breed as it can often be stubborn and inclined to dominate the master. This type of dog requires a steady point of reference and an expert owner capable of giving a consistent kind of training.
Not suitable for inexperienced people
As all dogs that form a deep bond with their family and owner, Dobermans are also very sensitive. The Doberman needs a consistent routine, peace and quiet as well as a calm but yet firm master who is able of managing any excess. A Doberman that lacks such an essential reference point can become dominant and bossy around the house.
Very sensitive breed that needs a steady reference point
This short-haired breed has a very low tolerance for cold. In winter, Dobermans need to be in a warm environment, preferably in the house where they'll choose to curl up near the fireplace or heater. If you plan on having your pet outside, you must provide a warm shelter for it.
A Doberman doesn't tolerate cold well
Despite being a larger breed which was created in cold Germany, the Doberman has a good tolerance for heat. The Doberman Pinscher preserves energy even in summer and it is not subject to heat strokes. Obviously, your pet should always have a good supply of water and sufficient shade in case it lives outside.
Good tolerance for heat
The Doberman gets the drive to guard from the deep affection for its family. Dobermans will do anything for their loved ones and would dash against any enemy. This breed loves the master and close family with full devotion, and forms a strong bond with them. Basically, the exact opposite of the vicious and cold-hearted Doberman depicted in movies.
Very affectionate towards loved ones
Compared to other "nanny" breeds, Dobermans lack a bit of patience. This type of dog loves children however it is not willing to have its ears or tail pulled nor will it tolerate excessive noise. In short, kids should treat a Doberman with respect in order for the dog to behave the same way. Obviously, the level of patience in any dog is connected to socialization (how exposed it is to other people, especially kids) and training.
A loving breed but not too patient with children
A Doberman's natural instinct is to protect the pack and, when this disposition is encouraged as often happens given this breed is chosen to guard, it can make your pooch suspicious around strangers. However, a Doberman Pinscher that's trained and socialized as a pet will greet strangers with a wagging tail.
The relationship of a Doberman with strangers depends on the training it has received
The main flaw in this breed is definitely the low level of friendliness towards other dogs. Due to its dominant inclination, your Doberman won't tolerate other dogs well and may tend to subdue them. A Doberman should always be on leash around other dogs, for example at the park. Nevertheless, if exposed to other dogs at a young age, this trait can be softened quite a bit.
Not friendly at all with other dogs
Although the Doberman's fur is really short, shedding is quite substantial. In order to reduce moulting, you'll have to brush your pooch once a week. Other than this, a Doberman's coat tends to remain clean and requires little care.
The Doberman Pinscher sheds but the fur is short
Dobermans have a tendency to drool, especially when excited and, obviously when they're hungry or hot. Some people find this feature unbearable and could never bring a dog that dribbles in their house. Others feel this is not a big deal. Obviously, this is your choice.
Somewhat inclined to dribble
Keeping your Doberman clean is a very easy task. All you need to do is brush your pet once a week to sufficiently manage moulting and check the ears which are subject to infections. Other than this, a Doberman won't require professional grooming and bathing is only needed once in a while. Because of such a short fur, your Doberman's smell will also be very faint.
Easy to keep clean
Dobermans will generally be in good health and have quite a long life expectancy for a large-sized breed. Nevertheless, this breed is subject to genetic diseases such as hip dysplasia and progressive retinal atrophy. Another common disease amongst Dobermans is the von Willebrand's disease, a blood disorder that causes blood-clotting issues (however, majority of subjects can live with this disease without any problem).
Quite a healthy breed that can be subject to some genetic diseases
As many active dog breeds, Dobermans also tend to gain weight when living a rather inactive lifestyle. This is not the only risk of not allowing your pet to move as much as required; the lack of exercise and stimuli can worsen a Doberman's behavior as well as affect its mental and physical state.
A Doberman Pinscher tends to put on weight when it doesn't move enough
Because it is very intelligent and capable of learning commands a Doberman is also easy to train. Be mindful of the breed's stubbornness and potential dominant inclination. In case you're wanting to adopt a Doberman puppy, only refer to a professional breeder and try to meet at least one of the parents to witness their behavior.
Intelligent and easy to train, the Doberman Pinscher can be stubborn
The purpose of a Doberman is to protect the family, therefore it will hardly try to escape or leave loved ones behind. A Doberman will instead stay near home and the family to watch over and defend it from any danger. Dobermans raised as pet companions also have no inclination to run away.
The Doberman Pinscher will hardly escape and won't usually go too far away
As already mentioned, the vicious reputation of the Doberman Pinscher is unjustified nevertheless it is a breed with a terrible bite and the instinct to always protect loved ones. When a Doberman senses a danger it can bite and actually, it will if it thinks it is necessary. A Doberman can attack other dogs which it has an adversarial relationship with, unless it was properly socialized at a young age.
The Doberman Pinscher can bite to defend the family
Dobermans don't really have a predator instinct however they can focus on small pets such as cats or rabbits. Best to keep your pooch on lead around these animals, near backyards or in the countryside. The Doberman Pinscher is not a great hunting breed however it may not resist the impulse in the presence of a running cat.
The Doberman lacks a strong predator drive but can attack small pets
Dobermans are not loud guard dogs and will only bark at strangers or anyone perceive as a threat. Your Doberman won't generally bark at every cyclist passing by. Furthermore, if a Doberman is raised as a pet companion and not as a guardian it will be even less vocal. A Doberman doesn't howl nor does it bark to express itself.
Dobermans bark when 're guarding
As previously mentioned, this breed is famous for the endless energy levels. Whilst guarding, a Doberman will be alert 24/7. As a Doberman's mind is constantly on the search for stimuli, this breed needs to exercise and engage in some activity in order to be happy. A breed not suitable for those who live an inactive lifestyle or have little spare time.
A type of dog gifted with great energy
A well trained Doberman can be obedient and docile, very observant of the master's commands as well as a pet that won't pull on lead and behaves politely. On the contrary, a Doberman Pinscher that lacks adequate training will be hard to manage due to its strength, size and substantial energy levels.
The Doberman's Gentleness and strength will depend on the type of training
Thanks to the copious amount of energy and lively intelligence, Dobermans will obviously need to exercise a lot. This is why an outdoor area for your Dobie to run around freely, exercise and look for stimuli would be ideal to have a happy pet. If raised as indoor dogs, Dobies will need to go out often and for quite some time.
Doberman Pinschers require plenty of exercise
Dobermans are very playful and love having fun, they're the perfect companion for those who love being active and playing with their pet. Unfortunately, Dobermans don't care much for socializing with other dogs which they usually see as competitors, therefore they must be kept on lead around other pooches.
A dog breed that loves to play