Rottweiler dogs (or 'Rotties') are large, compact dogs known for their solid black coats with clearly defined rust-coloured markings. They are strong and powerful dogs for their size. For their size, Rottweilers are very agile and capable of running and jumping with ease. Adult females stand at 58-64cm and weigh around 38kg, while adult males measure 63-69cm and weigh around 50kg.
- Category size: Larg
- Grooming requirements: Less than once a week
- Shedding: Little
- Allergies: No
- Noise: Not too noisy
- Dog Group Kennel Club: Working
- Alone: 1 to 3 hours
- Other pets: Medium
- Stability as a guard: High
The Rottweiler's ancestors could have been the dogs used by the Roman legions to drive and guard their livestock as they crossed the Alps. By the Middle Ages, in Rottweil, Germany, these dogs had been crossed with local sheepdogs to create the 'Rottweiler Metzgerhund', the Rottweil Butchers' Dog. Butchers used these dogs to drive and guard their livestock as it made its way on foot from town to town. In the 19th century cattle-driving became illegal in Germany and the Rottweiler dog breed suffered a decline until 1914 when they were once again brought into use for the war, which proved their physical and mental abilities.
Rottweilers are unconditionally loyal to their handlers and their families and will naturally defend them and their property. A popular breed with unscrupulous breeders, it's important to find a well-bred, well-socialised pup, as temperaments can vary. The importance of socialisation and training from an early age cannot be overstressed! This breed is not suited to the novice/inexperienced owner.
In common with many large breeds the Rottweiler dog may suffer from a specific stomach condition (gastric dilation volvulus) and hip dysplasia (a condition that can lead to mobility problems). Hip scoring of dogs prior to breeding is therefore important.
Rottweilers need exercise and plenty of it! Failure to do this can cause all sorts of behavioural problems. They love to run through woods and in the open countryside with no desire to wander far from their owners. For an adult, two-plus hours of daily exercise is required.
Large breed dogs, as well as having large appetites, benefit from a different balance of nutrients including minerals and vitamins compared to smaller-breed dogs. Rottweilers are also prone to bloating and stomach problems; smaller, more frequent meals can help minimise this risk.
One of the easiest breeds to maintain, give your Rottweiler a good brush down with a rubber glove every now and then – and more regularly during the moulting seasons – and this will suffice.
Is this the right dog breed for you?
All dogs have their own, unique personality, but some instincts and behaviours they’re born with. Try our breed selector and find out which dog breeds better match your preferences and lifestyle. If you and your dog enjoy similar things, you will be more likely to live a happy, fulfilling life together.
What to Consider next
It is incredibly fulfilling to adopt a dog from an animal shelter or rescue organization. It often means offering them a second chance in life. There are many dogs waiting for a loving family, a forever home. Reputable centers will be very careful about matching the right people with the right dogs. Staff learns all they can about the dogs they take in, and will spend time getting to know you, your family and your lifestyle, before they match you with any of their dogs. They’ll also be happy to give you advice and answer any questions you might have before and after the adoption.
Finding a good breeder
If your heart is set on a pedigree puppy, then your best bet is to find a reputable breeder. Contact The Kennel Club or a breed-club secretary who may have a list of litters available, or should be able to put you in contact with breeders in your area. Try to choose a breeder who is part of the Kennel Club’s assured breeder scheme.Visit dog shows to meet breeders in person and inquire about availability of pups of your chosen breed.
Welcoming your dog home
Whether you’re bringing home a tiny puppy or rehoming an adult dog, this is a hugely exciting time for everyone. While you’re waiting for the big day you might need to distract yourself, so luckily there are a few things you need to sort out before you welcome your new arrival. Click here for more information