Differences between the Doberman and the German Shepherd

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The German Shepherd is one of the most popular dogs in the world thanks to its fantastic qualities, which make it a perfect dog for both company and work. For its part, the Doberman is another dog of great dimensions and excellent qualities, although less widespread perhaps because many consider it a dangerous dog.

We review the most important features and differences between Doberman and German Shepherd in this AnimalWised article. Thus, if you are thinking of adopting one of these breeds, or a mongrel dog with their own characteristics, we will help you choose one or the other..

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  1. Origin of the German Shepherd and the Doberman
  2. Physical characteristics of the Doberman and German Shepherd
  3. Character of the Doberman and German Shepherd
  4. Doberman and German Shepherd care
  5. German Shepherd and Doberman Pinscher Health

Origin of the German Shepherd and the Doberman

To perceive the differences between Doberman and German shepherd, the first thing is to know the fundamental aspects of each of these breeds. Starting with the German shepherd, It is a German breed that originated in the 19th century, initially with the idea of ​​dedicating itself to the herding sheep. The breed immediately exceeded this task and its capacity for other tasks such as assistance, security, police or military work, etc., in addition to being a good companion dog, is well known..

The Doberman, For its part, it is another of the best-known dogs of German origin, although not as popular as the German shepherd. Its origin also dates back to the 19th century, but it is not a breed of shepherds, but thought for the guard, a task that he continues to perform to this day, although we also find him as an appreciated companion dog.

Physical characteristics of the Doberman and German Shepherd

You only have to see both dogs to appreciate the differences between the Doberman and the German Shepherd in terms of physical appearance, but it should be noted that traditionally the Doberman suffered the tail and ear amputation. Fortunately, this totally cruel and unnecessary practice is banned in more and more territories. Many people wanted to achieve a fiercer appearance in this way and, in fact, the race has been linked to an aggressiveness that does not correspond to reality. The only thing that was achieved was to make the dog suffer in an unnecessary postoperative period and to hinder communication with its peers in which the position of the ears becomes very important.

On the other hand, it must be taken into account that in some territories the Doberman is included in the list of dog breeds considered potentially dangerous, which implies the obligation to comply with a series of requirements for its possession. The German shepherd, on the other hand, is not considered PPP.

Next, let's see the differences between German Shepherd and Doberman in terms of physical appearance:

German shepherd

German Shepherds are animals of large size, with a weight that can exceed 40 kg and a height at the withers that exceeds 60 cm. They are more robustly built than Dobermans and their bodies are slightly elongated. They are widely distributed and have adapted to life in both the city and the country..

Although its version in the colors black and tan is the best known, we can find these shepherds with long and short hair and in different colors such as black, cream or saber. Likewise, his mantle stands out for being from double layer. The inner layer is fluffy, while the outer layer is dense, hard and close to the body. The length can vary in each part of its body, since, for example, on the neck and tail the hair is longer.

Find out all the details in the breed file: "German Shepherd ".


The Doberman is also of large size, very similar to the German Shepherd. Is something lighter, with specimens between 30 and 40 kg, and something higher, with a height at the withers that almost reaches 70 cm. Therefore, he has a more athletic and muscular body conformation. In general, its appearance is finer than that of the German Shepherd, which tends to be more robust.

Like the German Shepherd, it has adapted to life in the city, but prefers temperate climates and it supports the inclemencies of the weather worse than the German shepherd due to the characteristics of its coat. Thus, his coat is short, dense and hard and it has no undercoat. As for the colors, although the best known Dobermans are black and tan, we also find them in brown with red, in different shades of brown.

For more details, don't miss the breed tab: "Doberman pinscher ".

Character of the Doberman and German Shepherd

In the character section, perhaps it is where the differences between Doberman and German shepherd are minor. They are both intelligent and very faithful animals. and protectors with his family. It has traditionally been considered that the German shepherd is better for living with children, but the truth is that both dogs can live with the smallest of the house without problems, as long as they have been well socialized and educated.

Starting with the German Shepherd, it is excellent for learning and a good guardian. Due to his great intelligence and abilities, it is essential to offer him a good education, socialization and stimulation both physically and psychologically. For its part, the Doberman is also a very good student, intelligent and with excellent qualities for learning. As a downside, we can point out that he may have problems in the relationship with his peers, although these conflicts also arise with German shepherd copies. In both cases, we insist, socialization, education and stimulation are key and essential aspects..

Doberman and German Shepherd care

Perhaps one of the most obvious differences between Dobermans and German Shepherds is the care of their fur, much easier in the case of the Doberman because they have a short coat.. The German Shepherd will need more frequent brushing, especially if we have one with long hair. We will notice that it removes a large amount of hair.

On the other hand, in terms of the activity they need, both are dogs with considerable energy, but the German shepherd is the one that requires the most amount of physical exercise. Therefore, he will not arrive with a couple of walks a day, but we will have to provide him with the possibility of running, jumping and playing or taking long walks. It is a good candidate to participate in canine sports activities.

In both breeds, stimulation is important to avoid stress and boredom, which give rise to behavioral problems such as destructiveness. Know all the symptoms of a bored dog to detect them early.

German Shepherd and Doberman Pinscher Health

It is true that both breeds can suffer from problems derived from their large size, such as stomach torsion or joint problems, but they have differences in terms of the diseases to which they are prone. For example, hip dysplasia is very common in the German Shepherd.

Thus, in the Doberman are more common pathologies that affect the heart. On the other hand the German shepherd, due to its indiscriminate breeding, it suffers eye and gastrointestinal disorders, among others. In addition, this uncontrolled breeding has also caused behavioral problems in some specimens, such as nervousness, excessive fear, shyness or aggressiveness (as long as it has not been properly educated or socialized). An excessively nervous character can also be detected in the Doberman..

The German Shepherd has a life expectancy of 12-13 years, very similar to that of the Doberman, which is around 12 years.

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