Doberman Pinscher

This handsome, athletic dog makes a superb family pet as well as a working dog. However, like all powerful dog breeds, it needs good socialization, effective obedience training and affection from puppyhood to make it a well-behaved, friendly adult which is safe with people, children and other dogs.


This breed was designed in the 1880s by Herr Louis Dobermann, a German tax collector. At a time when taxes were collected personally, he wanted an alert and fearless dog with stamina to defend him as he travelled around on horseback. His secondary job as a "dog catcher" gave him the opportunity to study various breeds. The Rottweiler, old German Pinscher and Manchester Terrier were probably the breed's foundation. Later on, it may have been refined with Pointer and Greyhound blood.

If well socialized and trained, a puppy can adapt to family life.


Highly regarded as a guard and security dog, the Doberman is much favoured by many security companies moving large sums of money. It was a watchdog and messenger in battles during World War II, and is now used by the police and military because of its intelligence, alertness and courage, to say nothing of its athletic strength.

must know

There is low to average hip dysplasia in this breed. Buy from eye-tested parents and have the puppy eye tested, too. Von Willebrands disease, wobbler syndrome and torsion are also possible.


A devoted, affectionate house dog, the Doberman is very intelligent and easily trained but its power must be kept under control. It is a devout family companion which loves to be part of daily activities. Its guardianship of a family's children is legendary, but it must be trained firmly with kindness.

Powerful yet very elegant, the handsome Doberman makes an affectionate family pet and show dog as well as a guard dog.


The Doberman is a big dog. most graceful with a refined outline. A powerhouse athlete, it may be a glossy black, brown, blue or fawn (Isabella) with rich tan. which must be well defined. Dogs are 69cm (27in) tall and bitches are 65cm (25.5in).

Strangers 5/5

A powerful guard dog

Temperament 3/5

A great family dog needing to be trained

Exercise 4/5

An hour a day walking plus free running

Grooming 1/5

A weekly brushing

Other dogs 3/5

Seldom picks a fight but never backs down


A family dog for experienced owners

General care

An hour or so of walking every day with 10 minutes' free running will suffice. Add 15 minutes' play in the garden and a Doberman will be happy and fit. Very little grooming is required; a weekly brush and polish with a chamoix leather will be enough.

Gallery of Doberman Pinscher