Breed Education

SO, YOU WANT A DOBERMAN PUPPY?

We thank you for your questions about Doberman Pinchers, and applaud you for not just rushing out, and buying on impulse.

You are right to question the different breeds of dogs, and how they might fit into your house, family, and life style.

Do you live in town?   Or the country?  What is your lifestyle, and how will a large, energetic dog fit into that.  Dobermans are not known for tolerating temperature extremes. They are considered to be, basically, an indoor pet. It can be good to speak with your neighbors before you acquire your new dog.   Sometimes fears can be put to rest by discussing this with them first, rather than springing a surprise on them.

Most of the Dobermans I’ve known were bundles of happy, exuberant joy.   I think Dobermans need to be a part of the family, and don’t much like to be left behind….just how much on the go are you?   could you take the dog with you, on errands?   on vacations? will you be able to handle a dog with this much high energy?

Do you have a fenced yard, or an enclosure? Who will take care of the dogs needs? Will you be working outside of your home? And if so – what will you do with a large dog while you are at work?        Many breeders are reluctant to sell or place a Doberman into a home with no fenced yard.   Mistakes can and do happen, and many dogs are *still* killed yearly, by automobiles.   An enclosed, fenced  area where the dog can eliminate is better than a loose dog that could rack up hefty veterinarian bills if run over. To lose your Doberman, to a preventable accident, would be heartbreaking, for the owners, and the breeders. If you are a working parent, who will take care of the Doberman, give her exercise, and take her out to potty during the day?  Who will be in charge of walking her in the A.M. rush?   Late at night before bed?   Who will give her that much needed daily exercise?

Puppy, Or Older Dog?

It’s my experience, that many parents want a dog to “teach responsibility”  to the child.  But most children learn by watching, by example – not by being told to do things.   Which, again, shifts the responsibility of care back onto a parent’s shoulders.    If you’re a single parent?  This can become more of a burden than one remembers – especially if you’re considering a puppy!   I think we all forget just how much work that new puppy can be!
If there are children in the home, maybe an older Doberman would work better than a young puppy.  Not every dog of every breed is going to come out in a cookie cutter mold, personality- wise.   A puppy might grow up to be very protective, so that if you have visitors, your Doberman might need to be monitored.   When you take in an older Doberman, you have a better idea of what the individual dog is going to be tolerant of, and usually know in advance, what she doesn’t find acceptable.   You’ll have more of a
finished product, so to speak.

Do you have a dog trainer already lined up, to help you with problems, and training classes for your Doberman Pinscher?
Because walking nicely on the leash is fairly dependent on how well  the dog is trained to walk on leash.   Generally, a well trained dog is a joy to live with, and many behavioral problems are solved, simply by thoroughly obedience training your Doberman. You’ll want to have spent time watching different classes, and observing different techniques, talking to different instructors prior to bringing your new dog home.  This is an area where compare and shop is key, not money wise, but quality wise.

Do you have children?
I think the ages of your children could be a very important factor in this decision…. How old are they? Puppies and babies are not really a good combination.   I know some folks have warm glowing visions of them growing up together, but really its more frequently a case of the blind leading the blind, and can have some problematic consequences.   Again, a Doberman Pinscher is a high energy animal.

There are some medical conditions that can arise in Dobermans…. Some of those may come on as they get older. Are you aware of what these might be? Please do explore our web sites for more information on this, as
well other Doberman related issues.

submitted by
Suzanne McDonald

Published with DPCA Education Commitee approval http://dpca.org/PublicEd/