Yes , but ....

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Waltonjn316's review of Doberman

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“Yes , but ....”

Written on: 06/08/2020 by Waltonjn316 (1 review written)

So I would fall in the category of why a Doberman isn’t for everyone . I had a handsome pup from a reputable breeder (GBP 1400) . His lineage is European – so working dog and then some in its DNA. Got him at 8 weeks and by around 12 weeks we were exhausted. By 8 months we had to give him back to the breeder as per contract.

Why did I go for a Doberman? I grew up as a child with Dobermans and other breeds – had two girls and a boy but not at the same time. Being from India we had the space and domestic helpers to assist. The dog/s were happy having all the time in the world, leash free, running around the compound in a large fenced off area for hours on end throughout the night. In addition, my father used to take the doberman on his walks in the morning and evening. By the time I woke up I had a well exercised Doberman at my bed side – silent, sitting and waiting for me to pet him. I experienced all the good stuff without the hard work that went before it. I grew up and moved to the UK.

Lesson 1 - Just because you had a great experience with a doberman in one location and during another time doesn’t mean you will have the same experience in another location or in your current circumstances. India is huge and spacious, UK is small and congested (South East). In India you can have more people to help you. In the UK one needs to be a millionaire.

Lesson 2 – If there are no leash free runs everyday - you’re done for. It’s almost like they have a constant rechargeable battery installed. He needed to be physically and mentally exercised all the time. We didn’t take leash free into consideration – so how often could we find an area to exhaust him. Also Dobermans grow like weeds. It was almost like he grew every day – size and strength. So then it was a case of catch up.

Lesson 3: High Intelligence could end up being a disaster if not managed. I have 2 kids, in secondary and primary. At some point between the 11th and 12th week he figured out that my youngest was possibly at the bottom of the household food chain . It was obvious he inserted himself in between my son and the rest. So he would nip and mouth my son if we were in the vicinity however left alone with him – my son and the dog were the best of friends.

Lesson 4 - Be careful what you wish for in terms of companionship. He needed to be around/ see us all the time – so it didn’t help that my wife went to work early and the kids went to school - and then return late and kids on social media . Even though I work from home he needed all of us. 20 minutes here and there is not enough – the family needs to put in a lot more time . What this meant was since I was the only consistent factor in his life he didn’t like me leaving him even to go upstairs – so since I got him and then for the next 8 months I lived with him downstairs.

Lesson 5 - Having small children may not be a good idea if thinking about a Doberman – This is purely based on your situation – do you have the space or access to open spaces, how do you live your lives and so on. Alot of consideration needs to be placed on this - as it is easy to be swayed by the elegance and intelligence of a Doberman.

Lesson 6 : Expenses - one positive thing we did was follow the advice of Raw feeding. The Vets will always try to dissuade you from this as according to them it’s not regulated. However Raw Food experts will tell you that Vets will say this knowing the health benefits of Raw food and so could end up having less visits to the Vet – and thus less money in the Vets pocket. A Raw diet really shows – a beautiful, shiny coat, clean teeth, poo that doesn’t smell and so on. However Raw is expensive – my bill was around GBP 160 – GBP 180 a month . In addition to this there’s Insurance. They charge more for pure breeds so that was another GBP 130. So really I was averaging close to GBP400 a month which is not something I put a lot of thought into.

Lesson 7 : Trainers - I had around 4 trainers in the 8 months trying to work out what we could do. My experience is that there are many trainers available who are making a living out of easy , small breed varieties. They will use all these modern – “make the right choices”, positive reinforcements nonsensical statements. This probably works on smaller, toy dogs. What you will need for a Doberman is a traditional trainer. They may appear harsh with their tone– but very assertive . I believe the Doberman respects that – as he needs a leader – if not will take the leaders place. The very first trainer I went to was traditional but I was so appalled by his tone that I stopped it - I now regret that. The breeder reminded me that a Doberman is a dog , needs to respect boundaries and requires discipline with a firm hand.

So, in conclusion a Doberman probably like most other large breeds needs a lot of stimulation. I think the lack of leash free runs was the root cause of our problems . He was probably frustrated with the pent up energy – even though he was out in the garden and on walks. This frustration culminated into my son getting bitten. Which is why we decided to give him back – more for his sake than ours. You need to cross the T's and dot the I's when considering a Doberman because a Doberman deserves it.

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