History of the Dobermann

Since the invention of money, one thing has been certain at all times and in all places: The tax collector is never a welcome visitor. In certain precincts of 19th century Germany, the reception was downright hostile. All too aware of this was taxman and dog breeder Friedrich Louis Dobermann, from the town of Apolda. He hoped to breed an imposing but dependable protector to accompany him on his rounds.
Dobermann’s handiwork was a larger, less refined version of the pinscher that today bears his name (minus the extra “n,” which was dropped somewhere along the way). Historians mention the Black and Tan Terrier (forerunner of the Manchester Terrier), German Pinscher, Rottweiler, and smooth-coated herding dogs among the components of Dobermann’s new breed.
The “Tax Collector’s Dog” quickly gained an international reputation as a working dog supreme. Dobermans have excelled at police and military K-9 duty, as therapy dogs and service dogs for the disabled, as search-and-rescuers, and in competitive dog sports. During World War II, the U.S. Marine Corps Dobermans of the Pacific won the breed great fame. Twenty-five of these loyal “Devil Dogs” died during the battle for Guam.
With their muscular good looks and proud gait, Doberman Pinschers are consistent winners in the ring. A dog named Storm won Westminster’s Best in Show two years running, in 1952 and ’53. 

The Dobermann is the only German breed which bears the name of its original breeder, Friedrich Louis Dobermann (02.01.1834 – 09.06.1894). He was believed to be a tax collector, offal abattoir manager (knacker) and a part time dog catcher, legally able to catch all stray dogs. He bred with animals from this reservoir that were particularly sharp. The so called “butcher’s dogs” which were already considered a relatively pure breed at that time, played a most important role in the origination of the Dobermann breed. These dogs were an early type of Rottweiler, mixed with a type of shepherd dog that existed in “Thüringen” as a black dog with rust red markings. Mr Dobermann bred with this mixture of dogs in the Eighteen Seventies. Thus he obtained “his breed”: not only alert, but highly protective working and housedogs. They were often used as guard and police dogs. Their extensive usein police work led to the nickname “Gendarme dog”. They were used in hunting to control large vermin. In these circumstances it was a matter of course that the Dobermann was recognized officially as a Police Dog by the beginning of the 20th century.

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