Ten things you need to know about the rottweiler before you buy one
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Ten things you need to know about the rottweiler before you buy one

Dogs
Life As A Pet Parent

The rottweiler is the UK’s 25th most popular dog breed overall, out of a total of over 240 different dog breeds and types – so it is fair to say that there are a lot of them around, and naturally, every year more and more people consider the rottweiler as a potential choice for their next pet.

Whilst dog ownership is never a decision to rush into lightly, anyone considering buying a rottweiler also needs to factor in all of the breed’s unique traits, pros and cons before making their eventual selection, and rottweilers can be a very rewarding dog breed to own; but they are not a good fit for everyone.

If you are considering buying a rottweiler and are looking for further information on the breed or some basic details on things you need to know to get you started, this article will help. Read on to learn ten things you need to know about the rottweiler dog breed – before you buy one.

Rottweilers are very large

First up, the rottweiler is a large dog breed and as well as being tall, they are also heavily built in general and very muscular. A fit, well kept rottweiler fed an appropriate diet will look very imposing, but the breed also has a propensity to gain weight quickly if they’re overfed or under exercised, and this is very harmful to their health.

They’re also very strong

As you might expect from such a large and muscular dog breed, the rottweiler is also very strong, and has a lot of physical power in their chest, shoulders and neck. This means that if your rottweiler is pushy or is apt to pull on the lead, you would not be able to beat them in a tussle for the strongest – and so appropriate and careful training and management is required from a young age in order to ensure that the dog is well mannered, under control, and appropriately respectful of their handlers.

Rottweilers are highly intelligent

The rottweiler might look like he has more brawn than brains, but this breed really is the complete package – and the rottweiler is actually one of the most intelligent dog breeds in the world.

Based on the Coren scale of canine intelligence ranked by breed, which is the most widely accepted ranking of canine intelligence, the rottweiler falls in ninth place out of a total number of 138 different dog breeds.

This means that dogs of the breed are capable of learning and executing a huge number of different commands with the right training – but it also means that they are apt to get bored easily!

Their lifespan is slightly shorter than the norm

Large dog breeds as a whole tend to live shorter lifespans than smaller ones, and the rottweiler doesn’t tend to be as long lived as many other breeds, including other large ones.

Their average lifespan overall is between around 8-10 years, and the breed has a number of hereditary health issues that can affect both the quality of life and longevity of individual dogs of the breed.

The breed has had something of a reputation problem

Rottweilers are one of the dog breeds often used in the media to portray fearsome, aggressive or dangerous dogs, because their build and appearance is undeniably no-nonsense in nature. Whilst any dog can be trained for aggression or become aggressive if poorly treated or mishandled, the rottweiler does not, however, have a natural propensity to being dangerous or difficult.

However, other dog owners are sometimes wary of rottweilers and the general public also tends to afford them a reasonable amount of respect too, and if you have never owned a dog of this type before, this is something that you should be prepared to encounter in some cases.

They were originally used as herding dogs

Not a lot of people who are unfamiliar with the breed know that rottweilers were originally used as herding dogs in their native Germany, and sometimes still display a marked propensity to be naturally good herders, sometimes even herding other pets and small children!

…And have a long and distinctive working history

Rottweilers are perhaps better known as a whole for their later working roles as guard dogs, security dogs, and working dogs for police and military applications.

Their high intelligence, extreme loyalty and fearless natures provide dogs of the breed with the versatility to turn their paws to all sorts of different things when properly trained.

They are excellent guard dogs

This means that rottweilers also make for excellent watchdogs and guard dogs, and they are naturally quite territorial around their home and garden.

They don’t need to be trained to be protective over their home and often, owners, but they do need to be taught the appropriate ways to manifest this, and not to bark at or see off visitors or the postman!

…But require an experienced owner

A strong, intelligent and brave dog like the rottweiler needs an owner who is experienced with handling dogs of this type, and who knows how to get the best out of them. A rottweiler that is unruly or poorly trained will be most unpleasant to live with, and problems of this type are much harder to correct later on.

However, even a first-time dog owner who has their heart set on owning a rottweiler and that is prepared to do plenty of research and get help from someone more experienced if needed can potentially train and handle a rottweiler with aplomb.

In the right hands, the rottweiler is an excellent pet

When provided with the appropriate training, handling and lifestyle, the rottweiler is one of the most rewarding of dog breeds of all to own. They are loyal, affectionate, quiet within the home, hugely gentle with family children, and predictable and reliable in their responses.

However, rottweiler ownership is not to be rushed into or taken lightly, and this breed is not for everyone – and of course, rottweilers also need a large enough home to fit them comfortably, and space to run around outside too.

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