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Gilbert

Doberman Pinscher

Overall satisfaction

4.75/5

Acquired: Breeder (hobby breeder)

Gender: Male

Training: Books

Quick to learn and train

4/5

Emotionally stable

4/5

Family oriented

5/5

Child safety

4/5

Safe with small pets

4/5

Doesn’t bark a lot

3/5

Health

4/5

Easy to groom

5/5

Great watch dog

5/5

Great guard dog

3/5

It Doesn't Get Much Better

By

United States

Posted May 10, 2014

While I have always appreciated the aesthetic of a Doberman's sharp, angular features, it was my husband who was adamant that we would one day own one. Though he'd had many dogs growing up, it was always his family's Doberman, Heidi, that stood out in his mind. Part of me always wondered if he was just remembering the dog with the rose-tinted view of the world we have as children, but I have come to have a very similar experience with out Gilbert that he always talked about with Heidi.

THE GOOD: Gilbert essentially housetrained himself. He had, maybe, one accident as a puppy (not counting a time when he managed to get ahold of a piece of soap). He and our little girl 'picked' each other when she was just a year old, and it has been amazing to see their bond grow over the years. I've not worked with him as much as I would like, but if I'm being completely honest, that's because he quickly caught on to every command that I need him to know. He does sit, down, heel, off, etc. His stay could use a little work, but even on occasions when he's managed to escape, he always comes around to the side of the house to wait to be let in. So I really can't complain. He is very protective of the house and family (which currently includes myself, my husband, my two children, and bengal cat) and often makes 'rounds' to check on everyone if we're in different rooms. The sleek coat makes for great maintenance, and he's proven to be rather hearty and healthy all through his life. He's never been one to jump up, and I could not ask for a better dog to be around my kids.

THE NOT-AS-GOOD: Dobermans aren't for everyone, and they've certainly gotten a bit of a bad rap over the years. They do sometimes require a firmer hand than, say, a Golden Retriever. Personally with Gilbert, he has such a strong desire to please that we've not experienced much trouble in this regard, but Dobermans we've dealt with in the past have been known to try to bully their way into being in charge. He does bark at times when I'd prefer him not to, but one has to keep in mind that this is the sort of thing they're bred for. They were bred to be guard and watch dogs, and if he sees a cat or a person or squirrel that he doesn't feel belongs there, he's going to protest this fact vocally. He's something of a 'velcro' dog, which isn't necessarily a bad thing and certainly to be expected of the breed, but there are times when it can get a bit silly.

TO SUMMARIZE: We do have some older neighbors who are scared of him simply because of his looks and others who have expressed concern that we'd let 'one of those dogs' near our kids. Anyone who sees him with them, however, are quickly shut up on that. He's very gentle with them and with people in general. He definitely lives up to the 'his bark is worse than his bite', which is perfect for us. His presence is recognized throughout the neighborhood and he definitely makes people who don't know him be a little wary. If they get close, though, they'll find his little stump will wag excitedly in anticipation of getting to lean against them or get scritches behind the ears. He's something special, and I truly can't imagine our family without a Doberman now.

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