Rottweiler

General Information

  • The Rottweiler or Rottie is a large and rugged dog breed with a hard-working and confident demeanor. It is known for its muscular body, thick hindquarters, and easy trot. It has a broad head, strong jaws, and wide-set eyes. It is loyal, loving, and a confident guardian.
  • It is a working breed of great strength descended from the mastiffs of the Roman legions. It was originally used as a herder, draught, and guard dog. It is now also used as a police, military, and service dog. It is America’s 7th most popular dog breed according to AKC.
  • It has a short, dense coat that comes in black with mahogany, rust, or tan markings. The average litter size is 8 to 12 puppies. The life expectancy is 8 to 10 years.

History and Origin

  • The Rottweiler originated in Germany from dogs imported from the colony of Newfoundland (now a province of Canada) in the 19th century. These dogs were bred with local dogs to create a versatile hunting and driving dog. They were named after the town of Rottweil, where they were used by butchers to herd and guard cattle and pull carts laden with meat to market.
  • The demand for Rottweilers increased during the World Wars, when they were used as messenger, ambulance, draught, and guard dogs[1. However, after the wars, their numbers declined until they were revived by enthusiasts in the 1960s. They were recognized by the AKC in 1931 and by the FCI in 1956.
  • The first Rottweiler club in Germany was founded in 1914, followed by the creation of the South German Rottweiler Club in 1915. These clubs merged to form the General German Rottweiler Club (ADRK) in 1921. The ADRK is recognized worldwide as the home club of the Rottweiler.

Breed Characteristics

  • The Rottweiler is a robust working breed that stands 24 to 27 inches (male) or 22 to 25 inches (female) at the shoulder and weighs 95 to 135 pounds (male) or 80 to 100 pounds (female). It has a wide chest, a straight back, and a thickly muscled hindquarters that power its effortless trotting gait.
  • The coat is double-coated, short, hard and thick. It is black with clearly defined markings on the cheeks, muzzle, throat, chest, legs, eyebrows and under the tail. The markings should be mahogany or rust in color. The coat should be shiny and lie flat on the body.
  • The head is broad with a well-developed forehead. The eyes are almond-shaped, dark brown in color, and moderately deep-set. The ears are medium-sized, triangular, pendant, and set high on the head. The muzzle is well-developed with strong jaws. The nose is black and wide. The lips are black and close fitting. The teeth meet in a scissors bite.
  • The Rottweiler has a life span of 8 to 10 years and is prone to some health problems such as hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, osteochondrosis dissecans (OCD), entropion, ectropion, cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), subaortic stenosis (SAS), gastric torsion (bloat), cancer, hypothyroidism, and allergies. It needs regular veterinary check-ups and screening tests to prevent or treat these conditions.

Maintenance and Care

  • The Rottweiler is a trustworthy, intelligent, playful, and energetic dog that needs regular exercise and mental stimulation. It is easy to train and responds well to firm but fair leadership. It enjoys obedience, agility, tracking, herding,