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Hello all. In a year or two, i will be purchasing my first dog and I am doing research starting now. I more or less have a list of breeds I might be interested in, and have done research on each separately. As of now, my list consist of a Black Lab, GSD, and Rottie. I will admit that the Rottie is at the top of the list.

My only concern is with the Rottie that one day, for whatever reason their protective instinct will oveshadow all the socialization and training I may have done with it and it may do something unwanted. A dog like a black lab has a lot more room for error than a Rottie I feel, as far as risks and whatnot.

That being said, I still am in love with the Rottweiler, and am trying to do as much research as possible on all these breeds. Help? :)
 

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Please do more research. Rottis are, when properly socialized and cared for, the most gentle dogs and are fantastic pets. Unfortunately, rottis are the pit bulls of yesteryear and a lot of the same sorts of misinformation and stories still circulate about them. If you are interested in owning a rottweiler, I'd get in contact with good, ethical breeders and spend some time around the breed so you can see what they're really like.

Also, there are places where rottis are forbidden, cities that ban them, lots of apartments won't allow you to have them, and many homeowners insurance companies won't cover you if you have a rottweiler, so you need to be very aware of that before you get a rotti. There are lots of rotti and rotti mixes in rescue for this reason alone, you don't want to add to that.
 

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I would suggest that, since you have such a high interest in rotties - find a breeder or two in your area and visit them, see the puppies they have over the next two years and ask your questions. Get to know the parents and save up for your chosen pup.
Rotties are a wonderful breed. The only Rottie I've ever met with issues is one that was badly abused - not by the owner, but by a neighbour. Any breed can become aggressive without proper socialization and training. Do your research with training techniques and the trainers in your area as well. Sit in on a few classes and, once you get your puppy, you can pick the style that works for both of you.
Good luck :D
 

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I agree that a lot of extensive research should be done. I love Rottie's, but I do think they require more socialization and work than a Lab does - two completely different dogs. Labs are usually going to be your go lucky friendly love-everyone dogs, and a Rottie is not. Not to say they won't like people, but they aren't supposed to just "LOVE" everyone, I guess aloof is the word I'm looking for.

Now take what I say with a grain of salt - I had a hand in raising one, but haven't been around MANY others. I was a dogsitter for a Rottie from the time he was 8 weeks old until a little over 2. He definitely has a stubborn side... if he doesn't want to do something, he'll make it clear. You try to get him outside and he doesn't want to go outside? He'd just stand there by the door, stare at you, and look at you like you're nuts. LOL.

He's a big ole' bear. He loved to jump up and give me hugs and kisses. But he certainly didn't greet everyone like that. He was very cautious of strangers... and on walks, I could tell as he got older, that he was on look out at all times. If someone was suddenly walking behind us on the trail, he'd look back, look up at me, look back again, just to make sure everything was okay.

He did have a bit of a reactive problem with other dogs on walks but nothing terrible or anything that I couldn't control. They did used to take him to the dog park, as did I, but he did not appreciate how some dogs played and found lots of in-your-face type stuff disrespectful so we stopped taking him, since we did not want him to get blamed for anything that were to possibly go wrong. He always did GREAT with Jackson - they walked together almost every day and when it was just the two of them, they did wonderful off leash in the dog park. Both had a mutual respect. I think that was the Rottie's thing... he got along with dogs who respected him, and he did the same thing back. An obnoxious Lab puppy playing in his face was something he was not comfortable with.

He was a resource guarder - bad. You can't take anything from his mouth, even the owners. He had been as a pup too. I remember at 8 weeks old, he was doing a growl at me when I took something from him, but at the time, it almost just seemed puppy playful sort of, but... the owners work on it and always have. They got him from a good breeder, he went back to that breeder for training for 2 weeks, they hired me so he was getting out during the day, they were taking him to pet stores, and stuff... but now, honestly, they don't really completely trust him anymore around others (pets and people) so it's no more dog parks, or pet stores, etc. They just walk him and run him in an open empty field and avoid other people just in case. Anyways with all that they were doing, I STILL don't think they did *enough* and I do just think a Rottie needs a LOT more than an "average dog" if you will and so will any of the working/guardian type breeds.
 

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I agree with all the posts on here. We had a Rottweiler named Bear for almost 15 years, he died peacefully a month before he turned 15. He was protective when needed and a teddy bear that sat right on your lap when he wanted you to pet him. He was also very good when we had children. He pouted at first, then he got very curious and then protective when he heard them cry. They are wonderful dogs and if you give them the proper training, then you shouldn't have anything to worry about. Any dog has to know that your in charge.
 

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Rotties are the most gentle friendly breed if they grow up right ... and if they are bred correctly. Make sure not to settle for a BYB breeder ... someone I know got two pups (first sign of a BYB breeder, a COE breeder won't let anyone they don't know very well get two puppies from the same litter) they are registered AKC, but no health clearances and they both have horrible hips and knees. One of them could barely walk at 6 months old.

Also be prepared to work with your dog. A rottie needs a job, they are a working breed and need the fulfillment and mental stimulation of having something to do. It might be obedience training, herding, tracking, or whatever you come up with ... but every working breed need something to do (so no matter what breed on your list you go with, they need something to do). My girl "stresses down" and looks absolutely fine, a bit calmer and sleeps a lot ... that's when she's stressed to the point of getting colites.
 

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I think that a Rottie might not be a good dog for a first time dog owner. Nothing against the breed. But I feel that way about alot of the Working Dog Breeds. Most are too much dog for a first time dog owner. That being said, if you are going to wait a year or two you can gain alot of experience about dogs before you get your first dog. You could volunteer at local shelters. Find one that will eventually allow you to take a shelter dog to a good R+ basic obedience class. You'll learn loads and the dog will gain usefull training that will prepare it for it's future home.

But let me add that it also depends on your lifestyle. If you are single, work only one job, have a limited social life and loads of free time then with the right help (a mentor or local R+ trainer) you could do a working dog breed as your first dog. If you have children, a job, a spouse, and a busy social life.... then a working dog as first time dog might be overwhelming.
 

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I just wanted to make a couple of comments about Jacksons Mom's post. What she describes is a dog that's not been enough socialized, or rather, as someone said; a lab is a social butterfly and you can get a rottie like that too IF YOU SOCIALIZE the HECK out of it. Take the dog somewhere new every day for the first year of it's life. Take it to classes and train, train, train ... My girl was 9 weeks old when I realized that I couldn't bend up her mouth ... I needed to teach her to let go of things. To this day she spits things out when I ask for them. I have found with my girl that when I stopped using corrective training she stopped being stubborn ... imagine that ... She LOVES training and working and can't wait for me to tell her what to do after we focused on learning by R+ methods. I still use aversive (voice, ah-ah and such) if she doesn't do what I ask fast enough.
My girl loves everyone ... as long as I'm not afraid ... and I see nothing wrong to have a rottie as a first dog as long as you know that you HAVE to work with it every day.
 

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My only concern is with the Rottie that one day, for whatever reason their protective instinct will oveshadow all the socialization and training I may have done with it and it may do something unwanted. A dog like a black lab has a lot more room for error than a Rottie I feel, as far as risks and whatnot.
I've never had a protective breed before, but I totally get where you're coming from. I only know one Rottie personally--my aunt (a GSD person originally) bought her a couple years ago. Her Rottie is a retired show dog, with 2 legs towards her CD. She's a gorgeous girl, absolutely steady, level-headed, kissy--just an awesome dog. Smart as a whip and WHAT a lovebug--she'll try to sit on your lap and she's huge!! :) This Rottie seems... just the epitome of the breed standard, you know? But one day last year, she was in the car (with the windows down) and a little kid walked by the window... and she bit him.

She's an amazing, level-headed dog but in that situation, she decided to protect her car and bite. Her owner wasn't there to tell her that the kid wasn't a threat, so she took matters into her own hands and made a really bad decision. To be honest, this could happen with any dog left to make it's own decisions but people get so spazzed out over certain breeds, I think that made the situation worse.

Saying that, if you're interested in Rotties I wouldn't hesitate going to a reputable breeder OR a rescue group that really vets & evaluates the dogs that come in for adoption (I highly advocate rescue!!). :) I would think many breeds have some instincts or tendencies that that can, possibly, come out in an, uh, unflattering way *if* left to their own devices but with socialization, management, and training are totally fine. :) I mean, my current greyhound is a HUGE HUGE liability around small animals but he is a gentleman if I'm there to tell him what's appropriate and what's not. Just a matter of managing the instinct.*

Jen

Edited to add: *Jack's a different situation than a protective breed obviously, but, well, it's the only example I have. All the dogs I've ever owned would happily invite Jeffrey Dahmer in the house, lol. Well, unless he was dressed in a squirrel costume.).
 

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>>> a lab is a social butterfly and you can get a rottie like that too IF YOU SOCIALIZE the HECK out of it.
I agree with the socialized Rottie discussion. One difference - if an aggressive dog comes up to a Lab, the Lab may back down... The Rottie probably won't back down... he won't start the fight either. I don't consider this to be a problem... just an [anecdotal] fact...
 

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As someone who has owned and trained Rottweiler's for the last 34+ years I can say, there truly is no other breed that is friendly or more loyal and loving then a well bred, well socialized Rottweiler. People have mentioned Labrador retrievers as the epitome of all things tail wagging and happy but I assure you, that can go quite wrong as well. Not all Labs are friendly, Not all Rottweiler's are friendly, it is what you put into them that will show. My dogs are tail wagging fools that love most everyone. ALL of my dogs (after proper socializing) have been super friendly, safe dogs. In 34+ years of owning them, I have never had a dog that attacked or bit or even nipped a person.

I can't say I did homework before getting my first Rottweiler because my first was a gift from my parents. She was my responsibility to exercise, feed, train and clean up after. I did all that and she became my best friend. That relationship is what started a life long love of this noble breed. They can be a great first dog but only for an owner who will truly be honest with themselves about what they can offer the dog. Will this be a life long commitment or a passing fancy? The dog deserves the commitment.
 

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<snip>
My only concern is with the Rottie that one day, for whatever reason their protective instinct will oveshadow all the socialization and training I may have done with it and it may do something unwanted. A dog like a black lab has a lot more room for error than a Rottie I feel, as far as risks and whatnot.<snip>
A lab absolutely have more room for error than a rottie ... but NO dog will suddenly for no reason have instincts 'overshadow' training. They may react due to LACK of training, but if they're trained it won't 'rub off' that easily.

<snip> To be honest, this could happen with any dog left to make it's own decisions but people get so spazzed out over certain breeds, I think that made the situation worse.
<snip>
And that's the bottom line ... ANY dog left alone in a car with windows open and no supervision might get nervous and bite if a stranger comes up close ... and the fact that your aunt left the dog in that situation just shows that your aunt has very poor judgement ... and absolutely nothing about the dog.

Besides; your aunt didn't train the dog ... if she didn't keep up with the training it's not like 'instinct overshadow' ... it's more like me ... I vaguely remember that I knew calculus once ... but can for the life of me not remember anything now. Skills that aren't being used disappear ... and since the dog changed owner the respect and bond training creates is with the previous owner, not this one.
 

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I have experience with all three:wave: Where shall I begin? Lets start with the Lab. Labs are normally very people and pet friendly and it takes a long time for them to slow down. So if you are looking for an active dog that slows down when its about 8 then a lab is for you. Its not hard to find a place to live with a lab and most people don't run the other way when they approached by someone with a lab. My lab was huge..120 pounds, he turned into a wise old man, hardly barked, but did so if he felt the need. A pit bull once came running at us and the lab lunged in front of me and the pit took off running. And there tails hurt like you know what when they wag it and its cold outside:wink: Rotts have been my mom's choice of dog for the last 15 years and I actually brought all of them to her:clap2: They are very good dogs if they are well socialized early on and continued education would probably be best. Keep them busy and exercised and your good. Rotts are on the list of dogs not allowed in lots of places and my mom had a hard time insuring her home with one. With saying that I have also had a grown Rott attack my 4 month old golden retriever at a dog park. It was a vicious attack without any indication. My dog came close to dying and after the fight the Rott went into a very calm state, I wouldn't have believed he just did what he did if I didn't see it. Sadly he was socialized and brought up in a good home, he just kinda snapped. Even after that I don't have a problem with the breed, its the owners fault. They are strong and powerful dogs that need strong and powerful owners with lots of positive training..German Shepherds..I presently have one and they are very very active. You have to keep them busy all the time. They are easy to train and do best with positive training. They are loyal and will do anything to please the owner...probably the easiest to train out of all three. They also need lots of socialization and schooling and I would say lifetime training and exercising. Mine can go for miles at a time and not even blink. They are another breed that are not welcomed in a lot of places.. So there is the input on all three breeds from someone who has had all of them. It depends on what you want out of a dog, if kids are involved, do you own your home, do you have lots of time and patience for training--not to mention money. Good Luck!!
 

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Wow.. wealth of info. I really really appreciate it.

Regarding some of your comments, and that story about the Rott in the car... Let's be honest here.. I don't think a Lab would have done that. I know not ALL Labs are nice, but if a kid came up to an average lab that was in a car, I'd put money on it that it would wag it's tail and lick the kid.

After some consideration, I decided to rule out the Lab. I love a goofy, funny dog.. but it sounds like a Lab would be too rambunctious for me. I'm more into chill, relaxed, funny dogs lol (more bulldog ish).

Also, I have been thinking a lot on the Rottie. I currently have a family dog, so whatever dog i end up choosing won't really be my "first".. but I have done some thinking, and while I am in love with everything about the Rottie, I can't help but think that sometimes, I'm a lazy guy, and I'm afraid that the laziness will take over me if I own a Rottie, and maybe it won't get out as much as it needed to, or meet enough people as it needed to, and something may happen. And I could never forgive myself. That is, if the work you guys have described is literally a 24/7 job. If regular walks, and trips to the park/dog park isn't enough for a Rottie, then it may not be the dog for me. Not because I wouldn't be able to do it, but because I know that when I get a dog, it will be sometime in my late college years (going to be a freshman in the fall), or shortly after.. and I know I won't have the time to spend hours doing agility, or obedience.. apart from my social life etc... again, this is all if I am understanding you guy's correctly, and raising a Rottie is a full time job. Makes me sad, but I have to be responsible.
 

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Wow.. wealth of info. I really really appreciate it.

Regarding some of your comments, and that story about the Rott in the car... Let's be honest here.. I don't think a Lab would have done that. I know not ALL Labs are nice, but if a kid came up to an average lab that was in a car, I'd put money on it that it would wag it's tail and lick the kid.

After some consideration, I decided to rule out the Lab. I love a goofy, funny dog.. but it sounds like a Lab would be too rambunctious for me. I'm more into chill, relaxed, funny dogs lol (more bulldog ish).

Also, I have been thinking a lot on the Rottie. I currently have a family dog, so whatever dog i end up choosing won't really be my "first".. but I have done some thinking, and while I am in love with everything about the Rottie, I can't help but think that sometimes, I'm a lazy guy, and I'm afraid that the laziness will take over me if I own a Rottie, and maybe it won't get out as much as it needed to, or meet enough people as it needed to, and something may happen. And I could never forgive myself. That is, if the work you guys have described is literally a 24/7 job. If regular walks, and trips to the park/dog park isn't enough for a Rottie, then it may not be the dog for me. Not because I wouldn't be able to do it, but because I know that when I get a dog, it will be sometime in my late college years (going to be a freshman in the fall), or shortly after.. and I know I won't have the time to spend hours doing agility, or obedience.. apart from my social life etc... again, this is all if I am understanding you guy's correctly, and raising a Rottie is a full time job. Makes me sad, but I have to be responsible.
That is a very responsible decision and when the time is right and you have enough of it there is a Rott out there for you. Good Luck!!
 

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I think you have made a wonderful, responsible decision! When you decide to purchase a pup, you will be wised to do research with the breeder from whom you are going to buy your dog from. BYB do tend to be cheaper up front, but most do not do any genetic testings. In the long run, you might end up paying more for the cheaper dog. Not always the case, but needs to be considered.

Here is my input on the 3 breeds.

Labs- usually a family friendly dog, owners need to realize these dogs need a LOT of exercise. Labs being a retriever love to put everything in their mouth. The next thing is they are swallowing the object. Exploratory surgery=$$$$$ Not an aggressive breed but they can be. And let me tell you when you meet an aggressive one they are downright mean.

GSD- active can be protective. need to have an owner that knows how to handle their intelligence. They need a job and want to do a job.
bored they can be pacers and barkers

Rotties-More of the mellow of the 3. my own were wonderful with the kids, Not for the type of owner who is a softee owner. I am not talking about being rough, just making sure when giving a command you make sure the dog follows through with it.

What does all 3 have in common? The amount of shedding that will go on. I could not believe how much a rott could shed.

Here is a website. It is fun to click on the different dogs to see them talk about themselves.
http://www.petcentric.com/Find-A-Pet/Dog/Breed-Selector.aspx
 
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