A Rottweiler is a large dog breed originating in Germany as herding dogs. The early Rottweilers also worked as beasts of burden, carrying wood and other products to market. In addition, they were used as draft animals to pull carts filled with various products for their owners. During the first and second World Wars, Rottweilers were put into service as war time guard dogs. Currently they are frequently used as guard and police dogs.
Group 2 Section 2 #147
Group 6 (Utility)
Group 3 - Working
||Massive, powerful, muscular
||75-130 pounds (43-59 kg.)
||24-28 inches (61-69 cm.)
||Short, hard and thick
||Black and rust or black and a brownish color
||Broad, with rounded forehead and strong muzzle
||Dark, or an orangey brown
||Triangular, carried forward, occasionally folded slightly
||Was usually docked. Docking is Banned in Germany and U.K. An un-docked rottweiler tail is usually around 4-6 inches and thick.
||Straight, with heavy bone
||Round, compact, with thick, hard pads
||Median 10-12 years
The breed is almost always black with clearly defined tan or mahogany markings on the cheeks, muzzle, chest, legs, and eyebrows. The coat is medium length and consists of a waterproof undercoat and a coarse top coat. Rottweiler coats tend to be low maintenance, although they experience shedding during certain periods of the year. The skull is typically massive, but without excessive jowls.
According to FCI standard, the Rottweiler stands 61 to 68 cm (24-27 inches) at the withers for males, and 56 to 63 cm (22-25 inches) for females. Average weight is 50 kg (130 pounds) for males and 42 kg (95 pounds) for females.
In the hands of a responsible owner, a well-trained and socialized Rottweiler can be a reliable, alert dog and a loving companion. However, any poorly trained dog can become a danger in the wrong circumstances. Some people think of a Rottweiler as a mean, vicious dog but those are the Rottweilers that are abused and not treated as they should be. Rottweilers that are loved and cared for can be just as nice as any other dog and in general they are fond of children, very devoted, quick to learn, and eager to please. However, if they are not receiving the mental stimulation they desire, they will find creative and sometimes destructive ways to elicit it. Such behavioral problems as chewing, barking for attention and eating less can be a result of lack of human interaction. The Rottweiler is a good working dog that is also good for protection of children, as well as guard duties.
The Rottweiler is a steady dog with a self-assured nature, but early socialization and exposure to as many new people, animals, and situations as possible are very important in developing these qualities. The Rottweiler also has a natural tendency to assert dominance if not properly trained. Rottweilers' large size and strength make this an important point to consider: an untrained, poorly trained, or abused Rottweiler can learn to be extremely aggressive and destructive and, if allowed to run at large, may pose a significant physical threat to humans or other animals. They can be strong-willed (bull-headed) and should be trained in a firm, fair, and consistent manner - the owner must be perceived as the leader. If the owner fails to achieve this status the Rottweiler will readily take on the role. However, Rottweilers respond readily to a clear and benevolent leader. Aggression in Rottweilers is associated with poor breeding, poor handling, lack of socialization, natural guarding tendencies, and abuse.
The Rottweiler is not usually a barker. Male dogs are silent watchers who notice everything and are often quite stoic. Females may become problem barkers in order to protect their den. An attentive owner is usually able to recognize when a Rottweiler perceives a threat. Barking is usually a sign of annoyance with external factors (car alarms or other disturbances) rather than a response to actual threats.
In recent years the breed has received some negative publicity, possibly related to the fact that in the US, the Rottweiler is the number two breed of dog named in fatal human attacks from 1979 to 1998 in a report by the CDC. Dangerous behavior in Rottweilers results from their original breeding for aggressive guard dog traits. This tendency may extend towards other animals as well. Often injuries and maulings occur when an owner or passerby tries to separate fighting dogs, or unintentionally triggers a guarding behavior in a dog. In most cases, the type of behavior a Rottweiler exhibits is the result of past training (or lack thereof). Rottweilers may either be dangerous or benign, depending on the action taken by the owner in socializing the dog. The portrayal of Rottweilers as evil dogs in several fictional films and TV series, most notably in The Omen, has added to their negative publicity. Rottweilers are banned in many municipalities, some scattered countries, and are sometimes targeted as dangerous dogs by legislation, such as in the Netherlands. Many owners of Rottweilers are forced to obey state leash/muzzle laws, as in Germany, France and Venezuela.
The Rottweiler is a tough and hardy breed, but potential owners should be aware of known health issues that can affect this breed. Rottweilers are highly prone to be affected by serious diseases mainly to its hips. The most serious genetic health risks a Rottweiler faces are canine hip dysplasia (CHD), subvalvular aortic stenosis (SAS), elbow dysplasia, and osteosarcoma. Other conditions which may affect this breed include hypothyroidism, gastric torsion (bloat), and allergies. Rottweiler owners should have their dogs' hips, elbows, heart, and eyes tested by a veterinarian before breeding. DNA tests should also be performed to screen for von Willebrand's disease (vWD). Rottweilers typically live between 8 and 11 years.[
The breed is an ancient one, and its history stretches back to the Roman Empire. In those times, the legions traveled with their meat on the hoof and required the assistance of working dogs to herd the cattle. One route the army traveled was through Württemberg and on to the small market town of Rottweil. The principal ancestors of the first Rottweilers during this time was supposed to be the Roman war dog, local sheepdogs the army met on its travels, and dogs with molosser appearance coming from England and The Netherlands.
This region eventually became an important cattle area, and the descendants of the Roman cattle dogs proved their worth in both driving and protecting the cattle from robbers and wild animals. However, by the end of the 19th Century, the breed had declined so much that in 1900 there was only one female to be found in the town of Rottweil. But the build up to World War I saw a great demand for police dogs, and that led to a revival of interest in the Rottweiler.
From that time the breed has become popular with dog owners, and in 1935 was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club. In 1936, Rottweilers were exhibited in Britain at Crufts. In 1966, a separate register was opened for the breed.
The first Rottweiler club in Germany, named DRK ("Deutscher Rottweiler-Klub" ¿ German Rottweiler Club) was created the 13 January 1907, and followed by the creation of the SDRK ("Süddeutscher Rottweiler-Klub" ¿ South German Rottweiler Club) on the 27 April 1907 and became the IRK (International Rottweiler Club). The DRK counted around 500 Rottweiler, the SDRK 3000 Rottweilers. The goals of the two clubs were different. The DRK wanted to produce working dogs and did not emphasize the morphology of the Rottweiler. The main stud dog of this club was Lord von der Teck. The IRK tried to produce a homogeneous morphology according to their standard. One of the main stud dogs of this club was Ralph von Neckar.
A popular misconception about the Rottweiler is that the breed was bred for dog fighting.
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