A picture blog for my Dreizehn, my Doberman Pinscher.
I really love this except the weird thing he was doing with his front right leg.
I received a two-part “ask” earlier that included a plethora of questions about getting a doberman. Since I couldn’t get the whole question posted due to it being in two parts I am posting the answers separately.
If you do not like long text posts, I am sorry in advance. However, I think that this is good information for anybody interested in this breed.
"How do I know that what I’m getting is what I want?"
Honestly, a lot of this has to do with trust and getting your dog (be it a doberman, a different breed, or a mutt) from a reputable source. Reputable and ethical breeders and rescues will ask potential owners many questions about their life style, their home, their expectations, etc. This is not because they are nosey but because they want to make sure that A) you are prepared and able to take on the responsibility of this breed and B) that you are taking home the right dog for you. By that last part I mean a dog that is compatible for your situation.
For example, I got my boy through a breeder. He was my first dog. I wanted a partner to exercise and try sports with but I didn’t want an intense (think, lots of drive and energy and/or a strong personality) dog nor would I have meshed well with one. Not only was I not prepared for that but, as a full time graduate student who also works over 20 hours a week, a dog like that would not have been able to fit into my life style. Through the questions that my boy’s breeder asked (expected life style, expected activities, experience, general expectations, etc) she was able to choose the right puppy from the litter for me.
Yes, I played no part in picking my puppy. However, I am okay with that and I believe that if the buyer is going to have a say in which puppy they get, it should be minimal. Think of it this way, the breeder (should) know the lines like the back of their hands. They not only bred the parents but they have lived with and watched the puppies since their birth. There is nobody that knows the puppies better than the breeder and the breeder should be experienced enough to evaluate the puppies for their personalities and potential. If a breeder is letting you look at a litter and pick the puppy for yourself, walk away and never look back.
European vs. American
My boy is from American (show) lines.
There are also European show lines - hard to find reputable breeders of this in the US because there aren’t many shows that judge using the FCI standard.
Last, there are European working lines - this would be dogs bred for the working sports such as Schutzhund. As a first time owner, you do not need a working-bred dog, trust me.
Now, just because I have an Am Doberman doesn’t mean that I have anything against the Euro dobes - I don’t.
Honestly, having met many Am dobes as well as many Euro dobes, I do not think that there is much of a difference. Yes, there is a slight appearance difference but, otherwise, the standard is rather similar (including average weight and hight for this medium-sized breed). A well bred doberman is a well bred doberman and should have this breed’s traits regardless of if it’s Euro or Am. These are my beliefs and not every single person will agree with me.
"What are Champion Blood Lines?"
This depends on who you ask. To many less-than-stellar breeders (BYBs, greeders, puppy mills, etc), “Champion Blood Lines” means that there are a few dogs within the last four generations that have a CH title on their registered name. Being titled with a CH means that the dog has shown in front of many judges and is deemed to be a good representation of breed standard. Dog shows (conformation) are there for judging breeding quality. Being that form and function work hand and hand, being built correctly is incredibly important.
To the reputable breeders, this means that the majority of the dogs within the last 4 or 5 generations have been titled. This is both conformation titles (CH in front of the registered names) as well as, sometimes, working titles (titles that go at the end of the registered name). If you were looking for a working dog, working titles would be very important.
For example, take a look at a pedigree belonging to a direct sister of my boy (so, it’s the same as his) - you can see it here.
Notice how both parents are titled on both ends (front and back), how all four grandparents are titled, how seven of the eight grand parents are titled, 14 of the 16 great grandparents are titled, and three of the 32 great-great grandparents are titled. This is a pedigree that, obviously, has had a lot of thought and work put into it and, if you ask me, this is what you want to see. Yes, some untitled dogs were used but they were few and far between and there is likely a VERY good reason that those untitled dogs were used.
What age to bring a puppy home?
No younger than 8 weeks.
In the first 8 weeks of life the puppies go through some critical periods and learn a whole lot, including bite inhibition, from their mother and especially from their siblings. Removing a puppy early can be detrimental and can make training much harder.
Some breeders like to hold onto the puppies for a little longer and there is nothing wrong with that. Getting a puppy that is slightly older will not have a negative influence on your bond with the puppy. I got my doberman at 13 weeks of age and I got my other dog when she was 6 months old. I have a fantastic bond with both of them.
Reputable breeders in North America will crop/dock all of their puppies (some Euro breeders will give you the option of the dog being cropped or not but, if you opt for cropped, they will handle that for you). This could mean that the dog will stay with them an extra week or two because they will want to keep the puppy until the open wounds on their ears heal. That is something to keep in mind.
How do I know that I’m getting a healthy puppy?
There is no such thing as completely healthy lines in this breed.
If a breeder tells you that their lines are free of DCM (a heart disease that will take about 50% of this breed), walk away and never look back because they are either lying or they are not knowledgeable enough. That’s just something that doesn’t happen.
The reason that I support “reputable” breeding is because on top of titling their dogs, they are also fully health testing them. This includes vWD status, CERF, hips, elbows, and cardio. “Cardio” means the check for DCM. While there is a test for a genetic marker, it’s not known to be all too accurate. What you are looking for is a breeder who tests his/her dogs regularly by use of a Holter/Echo and then getting the results checked by a cardiologist
"How will I know what shots to keep up on?"
This is one of those things that varies a whole lot depending on who you ask. My best advice is to find and decide on a future vet for your puppy and talk to them about it. On top of that, consider the advice and suggestions of the breeder that you choose AND do your own research! In the end, make sure you are knowledgeable about this information and make the choice that you feel most comfortable with.
There are also a set of “puppy shots.” These are given three different times with the last set of shots being given around 16 weeks of age.
I hope that this information is helpful to you!!
I’m pretty sure that it goes like this… UKC CH Rhapsody’s Mystery of (the) Spanish Chest CGC CA
My pretty boy
Asked by angerinyourbones
Thank you! The Starfleet jammies are from “Made by Meadowcat” - you can find her on Facebook under that name! The quality of them is absolutely superb and they’re the best jammies that I’ve bought for Dreizehn yet. They keep him very warm at night and on the cold days.
On a lighter note, here’s a derpy dober-nose :)
I can’t believe that I even have to post this but I’ve been seeing incidents like this occur more and more, not only with dogs in general but with my dog specifically.
I am not okay with this.
If you love a picture that I take and you want to share it, that’s fine.
I would really prefer that you credit me when/where you post it but, usually, I watermark my photos so it’s not that huge of a deal.
What is not fine is taking an image that I’ve taken, editing it in some way, and laying claim to it. No, neither of my dogs are yours. If you are into role playing I will never judge you for that but I am not okay with you using images of my dog for role playing and claiming that he is some other dog. I do not care that it is make-believe, I am not okay with it.
As I said, I can’t believe that I have to post this. It’s not an issue that I ever wanted to address and I’m sure that I don’t even know the half of it. It is not okay with me for you (general you) to use my images, for anything other than general sharing, without my permission.
It is not okay with me for you to edit out, in some way, my watermark.
It is not okay with me for you to put a different name on a photo of my dog.
Dreizehn turned three years old on December 14th! It doesn’t feel like it’s been that long at all.