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Doberman - a demanding, yet loyal companion

27.02.2024 - Reading time: 7 minutes

Ein Dobermann rennt über eine Wiese.

The Doberman is a distinctive dog with impressive elegance, athleticism and pride. This versatile breed has many talents: Whether guard dog, working dog or family dog - consistent training is the key to a happy life together. The Doberman is not considered a demanding dog for nothing. However, within the family they are affectionate and friendly.


Doberman - an eventful history

The Doberman is the only German breed that is named after its breeder In the mid 19th century, Mr Doberman set out to create a strong, self-confident and lively breed that could be used as both a guard and protection dog as well as for hunting rats. Historians remain unsure to this day exactly which breeds went into the Doberman. The breeds of which they are certain – the German Pinscher, the Weimaraner and the German Shepherd. Other breeds suspected to be included are: Great Dane, Rottweiler, Beauceron, Greyhound and terriers. Whatever they may have in them: The Doberman is a recognised breed of working dog that is used by the police forces of several countries. Of similar appearance to a miniature Doberman is the Miniature Pinscher. This is, however, a separate breed.

Why are Dobermans considered to be dangerous?

We can certainly say that their size and athletic build give Dobermans quite an impressive appearance. But these features alone do not make a dog dangerous. The questions as to how dangerous a Doberman actually is, depends primarily on their training and experiences. The breed standard aims for a balanced dog that is easy to lead and works reliably. The Doberman should also have a friendly character that, in the presence of his owners, is even tempered, curious and outgoing with a strong drive to explore. The breed is also bred for use as guard and protection dogs – for this they should be unflinching, efficient and courageous. They will sometimes treat strangers initially with suspicion. If it comes to it, a working Doberman will defend his people and property that he guards. He has a solid instinct for what is “right” and what is “wrong” and will independently jump into any situation where he feels it is necessary.

Newsletter Doberman

Pinscher and Schnauzer, Molossian, Swiss Mountain dog
63 to 72 centimetres
32 to 45 kilograms
sleek, sporty, good muscles, proud posture
medium-sized, almond-shaped and dark
small, triangular hanging or standing ears that sit close to the head
Coat and colour
short, firm coat with clearly defined colour structures in black or brown
Special features
healthy puppies with a good character are difficult to find
lively, attentive and protective, agile and intelligent
breed prone to several health problems ranging from heart issues to narcolepsy

You can find the best products for your Doberman at our shops!

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Does a Doberman make a good family dog?

Dobermans are spirited, agile, and not always in the mood to be subordinate to others. Adult Dobermans are very strong and boisterous. They are not, therefore, an ideal family dog. Like with all breeds, it is essential that a Doberman is consistently, calmly and patiently trained from puppyhood. Clear structures, few, but easily comprehensible commands and routing rest periods will ensure Doberman puppies understand that their owners have everything under control. Owners with less experience will find the tips and advice of an experienced trainers to be indispensable. At a dog training school, Doberman puppies also learn how to properly interact with other dogs. A properly trained Doberman will know his role within the family, making him a loyal, attentive and peaceful companion.

Who are Dobermans suitable for?

Dobermans are suitable for people who are able to meet their needs. Due to their size, small city apartments are not suitable places for them. Owners must ensure to provide sufficient exercise and mental stimulation. This makes Dobermans suitable for people who enjoy keeping active themselves. Ideally you will get involved in various dog sports: Obedience training and agility sports, activities that get them using their nose like mantrailing as well as obedience exercises and protection dog work are good for Dobermans. For older people who may have reduced mobility, a Doberman would not be particularly suitable.

How much does a Doberman puppy cost?

It is not easy to give an average price for a Doberman puppy. The price can vary from breeder to breeder. The price will generally be above 1,000 euros. If you are considering buying a Doberman puppy, take the time to find a reputable breeder. Looking through classified ads for a Doberman may lead you to illegal breeders. Unscrupulous puppy dealers will often offer puppies that are far too young to leave their mothers, are frequently ill, and sometimes die shortly after getting an infection. Even if you feel sorry for the animals, you should never buy dogs from these dealers as this only supports what they are doing.

Doberman: It is illegal to dock the ears and tail!

Dobermans must not have ears or tails docked. This is something that used to be seen more commonly. This means that the ears are “cut to shape” using a template and the tail amputated. This “aesthetic ideal” of the Doberman with pointy, upright ears and a short stub tail is nothing more than mutilation of the animal. Alongside the pain caused by these actions, you are robbing the dog of their ability to express themselves. Animal protection legislation was introduced in 1986 to ban the practice of docking the ears of dogs. Twelve years later, the docking of tails was also banned. Owning a Doberman with docked ears and tail is not illegal. If a dealer offers you a dog with docked ears and tail, then this is a dealer you want to avoid as they are acting illegally!

Buying a Doberman: What to consider

A reputable Doberman breeder will ideally keep his dogs close to the family, the animals will look cared for and their environment will be clean and hygienic. He will be willing to answer your questions and you will also be allowed to meet the mother of the puppies. Paperwork, vaccinations and anti-parasite treatments will all be in order. Breeders who ask you about your experience with dogs and your ability to meet the needs of the Doberman’s temperament are also very likely good breeders. A good breeder will be keen to ensure that his animals are going to good homes. He will also not push you to buy. Take your time and, ideally, arrange several visits before deciding to get a Doberman puppy.

Taking care of a Doberman

The short, smooth coat of the Doberman makes it very easy to care for. Regular brushing is a great way to cement your bond with your dog. It also helps reduce the amount of hair your Doberman leaves around the house. Check their teeth, ears, eyes and claws once a week.

Special characteristics and health: Are certain illnesses typical for Dobermans?

Dobermans were fashionable for a while and were frequently bred. This has been to the detriment of the breed as the number of breed-typical illnesses has increased significantly. These include:

  • Certain heart problems: A typical heart problem experienced by Dobermans is known as dilative cardiomyopathy (CDM for short). Put simply, this means that the heart keep growing in size while reducing in strength. Unfortunately, heart problems in Dobermans are often initially without symptoms. Heart rhythm disorders often go unnoticed and leads to the risk of sudden cardiac death.
  • Epilepsy
  • Deafness and balance problems (congenital vestibular syndrome): Symptoms include e.g. holding their head at an angle and problems with balance
  • Von Willebrand Disease (VWD): Increased bleeding due to the blood not clotting. This can lead to complications in the event of injury or if having an operation. A test can reveal if Von Willebrand Disease is present.
  • Wobbler Syndrome: This is a disease of the cervical spine. It typically manifests are a curious, seemingly unsteady motion and increasing problems with movement.

All the more reason to find a reputable breeder. Before buying puppy, you should visit the animal several times and find out if the parents or other animals involved in the breeding are known to have or have had any of these diseases. When well cared for and with proper nutrition, a Doberman can live up to twelve years.


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