Does anyone have experience owning Dobermans? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-22-2019, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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Does anyone have experience owning Dobermans?

Hi all, thinking of getting a new dog next year and am thinking about Dobermans as an alternative to the GSD. The amount of fur produced by the GSD is the reason I am considering alternatives. Does anyone have experience with or owning Dobermans, particularly Euro lines whether show or working lines? To be frank, I am an absolutely not looking to work the dog. Maybe a bitework session here and there for fun but nothing serious. Mainly looking for a family and traveling companion that has decent watchdog abilities since I am moving into a home surrounded by a good amount of land. Any comparisons to the GSDs in regards to temperament, personality, health, everyday care etc.?
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-22-2019, 10:52 PM
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I had my sweet dobie girl for ten years. I probably won't be any help at all because I haven't owned a GSD yet (got a puppy in the wings!) and also because my girl was not a typical doberman. But if someone asks about dobies, I can't help but talk about her.

Dobies do shed, it's just not as noticeable as other dogs. We have dark colored leather furniture, so no hair ever showed on that. Any other material probably would have collected a dark layer of dobie hair in its weave. Also, when we would move her crate away from the wall, there would be quite a pile of hair that had collected behind it.

We did obedience and agility....but just for fun. We never went to any trials or anything.

She was a lover...loved people, loved other dogs, loved cats. Squirrels, rabbits, and small birds, though, were all the enemy. And for some reason, she loved to chase down and corner snakes. She never attacked those...just cornered them and barked maniacally until I would come and rescue the poor creature. LOL

I miss my girl...
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-22-2019, 11:24 PM
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Love love love Dobes. I’ve had 3 of them, with 2 of them living to 14 years. They’re goofy and more Velcro than GSDs. Very attuned to their owners.



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CARLY ......... Ch. Lauremi's No Reservations (AKC GCh pointed, HIC)
SCARLET ..... Lauremi's Almost Wasn't (AKC pointed)
and absent friends... SAGE ~ Lauremi's Whim Z v Jakmar ~ AKC major ptd, HIC ~ 2010-2015
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 12:18 AM
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Dobes are a spectrum, much like any other breed. But one of the BEST dogs I've ever known was a beautiful red Dobe! Amazing dog! That being said, I've known a lot more GSDs that I would describe similarly. Several of the Dobes I've known did not turn out to be good family dogs. Good dogs, just not cut out for that life...

If a companion is what you're after, select your Dobe carefully...though that's the advice you'll get for any breed, with Dobes it's even more important. Many are great dogs, they just don't "click" with that particular environment IMHO!

It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog. Mark Twain

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 12:35 AM
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I had two temporarily but neither were a good fit. Both had pretty severe separation anxiety, but they also came from less than ideal homes. However I've been told it's a common issue in the breed.

That said I was very impressed with both of them in the short time I had them. Learned quickly and bonded with me very tightly and fast. The male was young and wanted to mark on anything he liked. I have really considered them in the future although I would want to get one as a puppy.

I'd be wary though as apparently there is a fairly common heart issue in the breed that causes heart failure in them fairly young? I haven't done a lot of research but if you can find a good breeder with dogs you like I'd look into them for sure.
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 12:44 AM
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Mine were all good with kids. I seriously miss having one.

~ Diane ~

CARLY ......... Ch. Lauremi's No Reservations (AKC GCh pointed, HIC)
SCARLET ..... Lauremi's Almost Wasn't (AKC pointed)
and absent friends... SAGE ~ Lauremi's Whim Z v Jakmar ~ AKC major ptd, HIC ~ 2010-2015
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 08:03 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Judy Untamed View Post
I had my sweet dobie girl for ten years. I probably won't be any help at all because I haven't owned a GSD yet (got a puppy in the wings!) and also because my girl was not a typical doberman. But if someone asks about dobies, I can't help but talk about her.

Dobies do shed, it's just not as noticeable as other dogs. We have dark colored leather furniture, so no hair ever showed on that. Any other material probably would have collected a dark layer of dobie hair in its weave. Also, when we would move her crate away from the wall, there would be quite a pile of hair that had collected behind it.

We did obedience and agility....but just for fun. We never went to any trials or anything.

She was a lover...loved people, loved other dogs, loved cats. Squirrels, rabbits, and small birds, though, were all the enemy. And for some reason, she loved to chase down and corner snakes. She never attacked those...just cornered them and barked maniacally until I would come and rescue the poor creature. LOL

I miss my girl...
Would you say they definitely shed less than GSDs or is it the same amount but a different type of fur so it is not as noticeable? I know you haven't owned a GSD yet, just wondering if you would know.
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 08:47 AM
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We had a Doberman many years ago, he was good with my toddler, very sweet. They don't have a undercoat so no, they don't shed like a German shepherd! His tail was cropped, but his ears were not! If I ever got another, and I have thought about too, I'd like to just have natural tail and ears!
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 09:57 AM
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I considered one before I got my current GSD, for the same reasons. Dobes do shed, it is just a different type of fur. It can really get woven into things like fabric. It is defeinitely not the tumble weeds you get with a double coated breed though.

I had a hard time finding a litter of lines that were health tested to my satisfaction. I *believe* they have a larger collection of things to watch out for in the lines than GSDs do. Wobblers, DCM, and I have heard of quite a few with cancers. GSDs definitely have issues too so you have to be selective, but Dobes seem to have a larger collection of potential issues.

And, like GSDs if breed without thought you can get serious nerve issues. But, like GSDs a good one makes for a fantastic dog.

What ultimately kept me on GSDs was, ironically, their hardiness which come with...the coat lol I am outdoors with my dogs a LOT in the winter. During our recent polar vortex Valor and I ran 6 miles when the actual temperature was 14 and with the wind chill it was...oh....1 (planes trains and automobiles lol) We train IPO all winter too so it isn't uncommon for him to spend hours in my truck. We hike in snowstorms..I did not get to do it this year, but I like snowshoeing. One thing I DONT like is a dog in sweater lol So..GSD with all their fur is best for me.

Where are you located? I know of a really nice litter of Dobes on the ground. Bred by a guy who is a really good decoy, he is pretty happy with this litter.

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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 10:58 AM Thread Starter
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I considered one before I got my current GSD, for the same reasons. Dobes do shed, it is just a different type of fur. It can really get woven into things like fabric. It is defeinitely not the tumble weeds you get with a double coated breed though.

I had a hard time finding a litter of lines that were health tested to my satisfaction. I *believe* they have a larger collection of things to watch out for in the lines than GSDs do. Wobblers, DCM, and I have heard of quite a few with cancers. GSDs definitely have issues too so you have to be selective, but Dobes seem to have a larger collection of potential issues.

And, like GSDs if breed without thought you can get serious nerve issues. But, like GSDs a good one makes for a fantastic dog.

What ultimately kept me on GSDs was, ironically, their hardiness which come with...the coat lol I am outdoors with my dogs a LOT in the winter. During our recent polar vortex Valor and I ran 6 miles when the actual temperature was 14 and with the wind chill it was...oh....1 (planes trains and automobiles lol) We train IPO all winter too so it isn't uncommon for him to spend hours in my truck. We hike in snowstorms..I did not get to do it this year, but I like snowshoeing. One thing I DONT like is a dog in sweater lol So..GSD with all their fur is best for me.

Where are you located? I know of a really nice litter of Dobes on the ground. Bred by a guy who is a really good decoy, he is pretty happy with this litter.
Thanks for your input. I'm located in Georgia but am relocating to Indiana by the end of the year for a new job. I didn't factor in how the cold would affect my decision to owning a Doberman. Like you I spend a lot of time outdoors but have very little experience with snow so don't know how that would play into my all this. I'm still in the early stages of preparing for a new puppy so have some time to decide. I'm a die hard GSD fan but the tumbleweed amount of fur is astonishing.
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