Doberman Pinscher

  • Temperament Alert, Obedient, Loyal, Energetic, Fearless, Intelligent
  • Family Friendly No
  • Trainability Difficult to Train
  • Shedding Average
  • Group Working
  • Color Black & Rust, Red & Rust, Blue & Rust, Fawn & Rust
  • Origin Germany (1860s)
  • Height 24-28 inches
  • Weight 60-100 lbs
  • Original Function Guardian
  • Current Function Guardian, Military, Police
  • Lifespan 10-13 years

Origin of the Breed

Doberman Pinschers were developed in Germany during the latter half of the 19th century. They were bred by Louis Dobermann who traveled extensively as a tax collector. Since his was not a well-loved job, Dobermann, and wanted to create breed of a superior body guard and watch dog to accompany him on his journeys. The Doberman Pinschers were a cross between Rottweilers, Manchester Terriers, Greyhounds and German Pinschers. They were bred for size, speed, intelligence, intimidation and protection. They are guard dogs, trained for military and police work, search and rescue, and are adept trackers. By 1908, the breed named for Louis Dobermann became recognized and has continued to grow in popularity for the last century.

Coloring and Size Variations

These dogs come in black and tan usually, but can vary with red, fawn, or rust. Their ears naturally fold down, but are typically wired to point upright as is the fashionable way for Dobermans. They are also known for their sleek coats and muscular bodies.

Behavioral Tendencies

They are determined, bold, natural guard dogs and will be instinctively protective of their family. Doberman Pinschers are highly intelligent dogs that have a lot of energy, strength and will power. Though they appear intimidating, having been used as police dogs and military dogs, they also are patient therapy pets that can be gentle and loyal toward their owners. They are dedicated and focused while they are working or obeying commands, but can be affectionate and loving pets when home with the family. Each dog's temperament will vary, but most Doberman Pinschers can become compatible family pets for those willing to put effort toward training, exerting authority, and exercising these beautiful creatures.

Training Needs

Doberman Pinschers can become stubborn and insubordinate if they are not ruled with a consistent and strong hand. Their tendency towards aggression will require close attention, and they will need to be socialized with children so as not to pose a threat to a person of small stature. They will need to understand that they are not the dominant male, and that the human is the leader to whom they must submit. This dog, once he understands the hierarchy of leader and the disciplines in hand, will prove to be a highly responsive pet, able to act on command. Improperly trained Doberman dogs do pose a dog attack risk.

Health Complications

This fierce dog breed struggles with a variety of ailment, ranging from spinal issues, blood disorders, hip dysplasia, cervical spondylitis, skin allergies, bloating, as well as obesity if the dog is allowed to eat unchecked.


Doberman Pinschers require frequent and strenuous exercise, as they are energetic and demanding dogs. They are known for their speed and energy, and will be most able to thrive if they are given the proper work out. They love long walks and jogs, but will need to be taught to heel, as they have the tendency to take lead over humans if they are allowed.

Living Conditions

Doberman Pinschers is not best suited for apartment living, unless he is taken for regular rigorous exercise.  They prefer to have yard space and would do well in rural areas.


Doberman Pinschers do not require grooming beyond the occasional bath.

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