The Doberman or Doberman Pinscher as its known in the U. S and Canada, is a medium to large breed of domestic dog. It was originally developed around 1890 in Germany by tax collector Karl Friedrich Louis Doberman. With access to many different breeds of dog, he decided to create a dog which would be ideal for protection as collecting taxes was a dangerous job.
The Doberman is believed to have been created from several different breeds of dog, each of which had the characteristics they were looking for. It is widely believed that the old German Shepherd was the largest contributor to the Doberman breed, along with the Greyhound and the Manchester terrier. The other exact breeds used and the ratios of mixing remain uncertain, although many experts believe the Beauceron, the German Pinscher, the Rottweiler and the Weimaraner were probably also involved.
After Karl Dobermans death in 1894 the Germans named the breed the Doberman Pinscher in his honour, in the 1940s they dropped the word Pinscher after deciding that the German word for terrier was no longer appropriate, a few years later the British followed suit.
After being used as a guard dogs during World War II the Doberman became popular in a short period of time, despite the breed only being 150 years old, in 2017 the American Kennel club ranked the Doberman as its 16th most popular breed. They have also won the Westminster Kennel club dog show four times in 1939, 1952, 1953 and 1989.
Dobermans are known to be intelligent, alert and loyal companion and guard dogs. Their personality can vary a great deal between each individual dog, but if taken care of and trained properly they are generally considered to be loving and devoted companions. The Doberman is driven, strong and can sometimes be stubborn, owning one requires care and commitment. With the proper approach they can be easily trained and will learn very quickly.
Although the breed standards vary among kennel and breeders clubs, most follow the standard set by the Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI), which describes the male dog as being 68 to 72cm at the withers. According to the same standards, the size of the female is 63 to 68cm. The Doberman has a square frame, its length should equal its height at the withers, and the length of its head, neck and legs should be proportionate to the body.
The standards for weight are also provided by the FCI, the ideal weight for the male dog is described as being 40 to 45kg, while the female is lighter at 32 to 35kg.
The Dobermans lifespan is about 10 to 13 years on average, though the breed is subject to a number of health problems, the more common ones are dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), cervical vertibral instability (CVI) and Von Willebrands disease. DCM is a condition where the heart becomes enlarged and cannot pump blood properly, symptoms to look out for are tiredness, leg swelling and shortage of breath. CVI also known as Wobblers disease is a term used to describe several possible malformations of the cervical vertebrae which causes an unsteady gait and weakness in dogs. Von Willebrands disease is a blood clotting disorder for which testing is available.