Are you looking for a dog that would become not just a pet, but a real friend, a family member? Have you thought about the Rottweiler, but heard that these are vicious and dangerous monsters? Believe me, such opinions are unfounded. So say those who do not know the true nature of the Rottweiler. A dog that has been properly raised will not bark in vain, will not bite anyone, will obey its owner. The Rottweiler will become your loyal friend. And in a critical situation, he will defend those whom he loves and respects.
The content of the article:
History of the origin of the breed
The Rottweiler is a breed with a long history, in which there was a place both of great popularity and almost complete disappearance. The ancestors of the breed are dogs that helped herd livestock back in ancient Rome. The origin of the breed known today as the Rottweiler from the Roman herding dogs came from the belligerent Roman Empire, which dreamed of conquering Europe. To accomplish this goal, she needed a huge army and an incredible amount of provisions to feed her. Considering that at that time there was no refrigeration equipment at all, the meat intended for the soldiers had to be fresh, and therefore accompany them in a “live” form. A dog was required to drive, escort and guard such “provisions” on the way and at night camps in the long and exhausting transitions of the army. A mastiff-like dog was the best suited for this role.
In Europe, the ancestors of the Rottweilers appeared thanks to the aggressive plans of the Roman Empire. Having crossed the Alps with the warriors, the herd keepers entered the territory of southern Germany. The armies moved forward, some of the dogs remained in the conquered territories where the local dogs lived. The offspring of the dogs of Roman legionnaires and their southern Germanic counterparts were later called Rottweilers. The dogs continued to guard the herds. Now it was the livestock of local residents, because the legionnaires were driven out of the occupied lands.
The name of the breed is associated with the city of Rottweil, in the vicinity of which the main occupation of the peasants was beef cattle breeding. The job of a “butcher dog” was very hard. The dog had to not only drive the herd, but also take it to the place of slaughter. The cows, sheep and pigs obeyed quite well, it was more difficult with the violent bulls. At first, the bull walked quite peacefully, but then it began to be stubborn and rears up, making it difficult to drive the cattle away. And here the intervention of a beater dog was required – the so-called “shtumpf” or “stumpfer” – a dog with a severed tail.
This is how Rottweilers were distinguished from other beater dogs with normal long tails. After barking, the dog had to bite the stubborn bull on command over the ankle of the hind leg, which is associated with a certain danger for the dog. But the more serious the situation, the more enthusiastically the Rottweiler attacked the ferocious bull and always forced him to continue on his way. The ability to bring order to a ferocious bull earned the beater dog sympathy and popularity, growing thanks to the intelligence and courage of the four-legged helper.
The descendants of Roman dogs worked diligently until the middle of the 19th century, when cattle driving was prohibited, and in addition to all, the railroad and donkeys supplanted dog carts. For the butcher dog Rottweil, as the breed was called, hard times have come. The need for them has practically disappeared, but in those days dogs were kept only for the sake of work. Their number decreased so dramatically that in 1882 only one, far from the best, representative of the breed was shown at the Heilbronn Dog Show.
The historic event took place in the city of Kiel. In one of the pubs, 14 tipsy sailors started swearing and fighting over a woman. The owner of the pub, running out into the street, called the patrolling watchman, who hurried to the pub with his dog. The dog was a Rottweiler by accident. Entering the institution, he ordered in an orderly tone “Quiet!”
Laughter was the answer and the tipsy rushed to the guard. That is, they tried to do it. And then they were knocked to the floor by the dog, who spent his whole life working to pacify the bulls. The guard commanded: “Get up and line up!”
The sober sailors lined up and without any help were taken out and, under escort, the dogs went to the police station. Going out into the street, one of the sailors tried to escape, but was immediately thrown to the ground, which finally pacified the rest.
Admiral Prince Heinrich von Prussen, brother of Emperor Wilhelm, heard this story about the guard and his brave dog and ordered to introduce this pair to him. On meeting, the admiral wanted to pet the dog. “Don’t touch your Royal Majesty!” The ohan shouted in dismay. “The dog grabs without respect for everyone who touches it. I ask your permission to sit down and take off the helmet. Now the dog knows that I am not on guard and you can stroke it.”
The prince stretched out his hand across the table to the guard: “It gave me pleasure to hear about you and meet you outside the service,” the admiral replied. Two weeks later, security guard Shultzman received an order with a garter from the ministry for a courageous act in the service. This story was interpreted and repeated countlessly throughout the German press and the Rottweiler became extremely popular and famous.
During 1901-1907 the Rottweiler gained recognition as a police dog. On January 13, 1907, the German Rottweiler Club (DRK – Deutscher Rottweiler Klub) was organized, and on April 26 of the same year – the International Rottweiler Club (IRK – Internationaler Rottweiler Klub). On August 14, 1921, the National Rottweiler Club of Germany – ADRK was established in Würzburg, in which 3400 Rottweilers were already registered. Since its inception, despite the difficulties that arose during and after World War II, the ADRK has managed to remain the leading breed club in Germany. For 70 years this club has been the “trendsetter” in the world of Rottweilers. This organization rightfully belongs to the creation of the modern look of the breed. Although the improvement was carried out with an emphasis on exterior forms, working qualities were not forgotten.
Rottweilers were brought to Russia in 1914. They were used to combat predators and to protect herds of domesticated elk. It turned out that this breed is very resistant to cold weather. This can also explain its popularity in the Scandinavian countries, where the climatic conditions are very harsh..
There was no pedigree work with the breed in Russia – soon the Rottweilers disappeared and reappeared only after the Great Patriotic War. They were brought to the Krasnaya Zvezda kennel. Then there, under the leadership of G.P. Medvedev, work began on the breeding of the Black Terrier breed, the basis of which was such breeds as the Rottweiler, Giant Schnauzer, and Airedale.
Rottweilers fell in love with many amateur dog breeders and, although still a rare, but very popular breed of working dogs.
Description of the breed
The growth of males is from 61 to 68 cm, bitches – 56-63 cm. The average weight of males is 50 kg, bitches – 42 kg. The physique is compact, balanced and powerful – the embodiment of agility, stamina and strength.
- The head of a Rottweiler is of medium length, the distance between the ears is large. The transition from the forehead to the muzzle is pronounced. The muzzle should look neither too long nor too short in comparison to the skull.
- Ears are of medium size and triangular in shape, drooping, high and set wide apart. The front edge of the ear is close to the cheekbone, giving the impression of a wider dog’s skull.
- The eyes are dark brown, almond-shaped, of medium size.
- The nose of the Rottweiler is straight, the back tapers towards the nose. The nose is wide, the nostrils are large.
- The bite of the dog is scissor, strong. Dental formula – complete (42 teeth).
- The body of the Rottweiler has a strong, straight and firm back, short, wide and strong loins.
- The chest is well developed, wide, voluminous, about half the height. Arched, movable ribs.
- The back is straight, strong.
- The front legs of a Rottweiler, when viewed from the front, appear straight and set wide apart. The dog’s paws are round, with hard pads, tightly fitting toes and strong, meek black nails.
- The hind legs of the dog are straight (when viewed from behind), not close to each other. In profile (with a free stand), the lower leg and thigh form an obtuse angle. The Rottweiler’s thighs are well muscled, broad and moderately long. The toes of the hind legs (they are slightly more elongated than the front ones) fit snugly together.
- The tail of a Rottweiler in a calm state is hanging. The elongated tail becomes an extension of the back.
- Rottweiler’s coat – undercoat and top coat. The undercoat does not protrude from under a dense, coarse, close-fitting top coat of medium length. The hind legs are covered with slightly longer hair. Soft or too short coat, lack of undercoat is considered a defect.
- The color should be black and the tan-red tan should be well defined. Marks are located on the face and cheeks, chest and lower neck, on the limbs, at the base of the tail and under the eyes.
Rottweilers have a reputation as formidable and sometimes dangerous dogs, although their ferocity has been diminished somewhat by selective breeding.
The Rottweiler is an individualist, he always has only one owner. Wagging its tail in front of anyone is not in the nature of this dog. If you are going to get a Rottweiler, be prepared for the dog to be on his own mind most of the time. And only at home, when the dog is next to you, your beloved owner and family members, you will see all the devotion of his tender heart and the ardor of feelings. Even an adult, he will fool around, play pranks, alternately hooligan and flatter, inviting everyone to take part in this game.
They are confident dogs, powerful, serious and courageous. However, Rottweilers are not suitable for shy and inexperienced dog owners because they require proper training and handling. Rottweilers are responsive and intelligent and with a persistent trainer who uses positive training methods, Rottweilers learn very quickly. The Rottweiler needs solid discipline and constant training.
It is important for a Rottweiler to ensure regular physical and mental activity. Since these are large enough dogs with a huge amount of energy, it is important for them to have a spacious and safe space where they can play and run. Rottweilers get along well with young children when raised together and with older children who don’t bother them.
When communicating with strangers, it is necessary to take precautions, since the Rottweilers have a very developed protective instinct. Early socialization and proper preparation are key factors in this case.
There is no perfect dog breed. All of them are living beings with their own characteristics. The disadvantages of a Rottweiler are a direct continuation of its merits. What attracts this breed? Power, strength, noble head shape, attractive black color with tan. At the same time, all these qualities reduce the dog’s tolerance to heat. Rottweiler is not afraid of frost! But it is extremely difficult to endure the heat (especially for males).
Rottweiler and other pets
It is helpful to introduce Rottweilers to other animals at an early age because they can be aggressive towards cats and other dogs. However, with the right owner and family, Rottweilers are obedient, loyal and loving pets..
Rottweilers shed heavily 2 times a year, the rest of the time moderately. Dogs of this breed need to be brushed about twice a week. This is a general rule for all shorthaired breeds. Brushing encourages the growth of new, healthy coat and removes old, dead coat. This routine allows you to bond with your Rottweiler and train your puppy to do it from childhood, and is a great way to start a close, trusting relationship.
The Rottweiler also needs to periodically trim its nails, check the paw pads, brush teeth, ears, and bathe as needed.
The coat of a dog conforming to the breed standard is short. But you still need to brush it with a brush. Spend 10-15 minutes brushing your pet’s coat while walking. The benefits of this simple procedure are obvious: the coat will be shiny and smooth. A medium-hard natural hair brush is suitable for cleaning. Brushing your dog with a comb after brushing will increase muscle tone, similar to the effects of massage on an athlete’s body..
The peculiarity of the breed is that it is prone to obesity, so the dog’s weight must be carefully monitored. The Rottweiler has a sensitive stomach and a very delicate liver. If you have structured the dog’s diet in such a way that it suits her perfectly, do not deviate from it. It is necessary to make changes taking into account the age and condition of your pet (pregnancy, illness). A working, show or breeding dog needs a different diet because it uses energy differently than a companion dog.
An adult Rottweiler (after 6 months of age) should be fed twice a day. We recommend feeding the Rottweiler in the morning (at a time convenient for you) and in the afternoon, and it is better if this happens no later than 18:00. It is better for digestion and allows the body to “rest” at night.
Rottweilers are excellent guard dogs, and they respond well to obedience training, although the owner should be willing to devote a lot of time and energy to this. In general, they are quite kind creatures, but if they think that someone – an animal or a person – is threatening them or their owners, they can show character and demonstrate natural strength and grasp.
If you are planning to perform with your pet at exhibitions, participate in agility competitions, keep in mind that you will need endurance and patience when working out the necessary commands. But the small Rottweiler will learn the command “Walk” on the move. As soon as you unfasten the leash, getting out with the puppy on the street – you will see how obvious this command is to him.
Allowing your dog to walk (and not vice versa) is both exhausting and potentially dangerous. Before you take your new puppy out for a walk, you need to practice indoors to get him used to the collar and leash. The dog should not be allowed to pull on the leash. Ideally, she should walk with you, so that her head is next to your left leg. If you are right-handed, take the end of the leash in your right hand and grab the slack with your left. Lefties are likely to feel more confident with the leash in their left hand.
The peculiarity of the breed – a sensitive stomach – affects the health of the dog as follows. In the first months of life, the puppy’s body cannot adequately resist intestinal infections. How can the owner protect the pet from “infection”? During the first time of walking, when the little Rottweiler is just getting to know the street, do not take him to places where many dogs are walking. Try to find low-traffic areas.
Life Expectancy: 9 – 11 years.
The most common diseases in Rottweilers are:
- Bloating – a life-threatening sudden illness associated with filling the stomach with air and volvulus.
- Osteochondrosis is a joint disorder that can lead to pain, chromate and arthritis.
- Hip dysplasia is a malformation of the hip joint that leads to pain, lameness, and arthritis.
- Osteosarcoma is a type of cancer.
- Retinal dysplasia is a congenital disease of the retina.
- Progressive retinal atrophy – most often begins in older animals and can lead to blindness.
- Entropion (turn of the century)
- Cataract is an eye disease that can lead to blindness.
- Rupture of the cranial cruciate ligament (gonarthrosis) – severe lameness results from cracks in the cruciate ligament of the knee.
Other health problems in Rottweilers are kidney failure, muscle and nerve disorders, skin tumors, and elbow dysplasia.
Additionally, Rottweilers are much less common, but such diseases are still observed:
- Aortic stenosis – symptoms of this disease are weakness, collapse, and sudden death.
- Congenital hypotrichosis, a condition causing symmetrical hair loss.
- Atlantoaxial instability is a congenital disorder characterized by a fragile articulation between the first two cervical vertebrae.
Some Rottweilers snore while sleeping, which sometimes makes them cough. It is not a disease and does not threaten the dog’s health. However, sometimes a cough can be a sign of heart or lung disease, in which case the dog needs a veterinary examination..
Estimated cost of a Rottweiler puppy
The minimum price for a Rottweiler puppy is from 6000 rubles. A pet with all the documents and a good pedigree will cost at least 10,000 to 30,000 rubles.