The Doberman Pinscher is considered a relatively new breed, even though they were first created in 1876. A German tax collector by the name of Louis Doberman needed a strong and imposing dog to protect him from bandits while he made his rounds through the town. Unfortunately, he never kept good records of the dogs used to breed the first Doberman Pinscher, but it’s widely agreed that Shepherds, Terriers, and Rottweilers were most likely involved.
Doberman Pinscher Colors
Due to this breeds crossbred nature, they have a variety of coat colors built into their DNA.
- Black with brown markings – It’s sometimes referred to as black and tan or black and rust. This is what most people think of when they picture a Dobie, as it’s the most common color. A healthy coat will appear shiny with a rich contrast. In some rare cases, the Black Doberman presents without tan markings. The technical term is melanistic Doberman. As striking as they may be, it’s considered unethical to breed them because it is a genetic mutation derived from inbreeding.
- Red Doberman – Otherwise known as a chocolate Doberman, this is the second most common color. The coat is characterized by a light brownish-red color.
- Blue Doberman – Sometimes called gray, the blue Doberman is a less commonly seen coat color. The shade looks like a diluted, low contrast black and can also present in a charcoal gray, silver or purple.
- Fawn Doberman – Also rare, this coat is sometimes referred to as Isabella. It appears as a diluted form of the red coat.
The reason Fawn and Blue coats are rare is because dog shows consider these color as a negative trait. Therefore, breeders are less inclined to produce them.
There is are some additional rarer coat colors: The White Doberman. While they can make a great companion and the coat sounds enchanting, it’s recommended that people do not endorse this coat breeding. In 1976, the first White Doberman named Shelba was born as a result of inbreeding. This type of Dobie is undoubtedly beautiful, but inbreeding comes with a variety of medical conditions and canine behavioral problems.
Another whitish coat is that of the Albino Doberman. This dog may look similar but the two are different. Albino coats are the result of an actual medical condition. This condition also results in poor eyesight at an early age. Without the ability to see properly, a pup can quickly become weary of his surroundings and rely on biting as a way to defend himself from the unknown. It’s considered inhumane to breed Albinos because of their poor quality of life. Many countries have even made their breeding illegal.
With that said, the negativity and controversy surrounding white and albino Dobermans are not hard and fast rules. Medical conditions aren’t entirely tied to the color of a Dobies fur. Family history plays a large part and conditions may be completely unrelated to their white or albino color. In other words, not all of these Dobermans have severe health problems, and if they are in need of adoption that dog should not be passed up because of unethical breeding practices. Plus, that pup is still a Dobie at heart and have the capacity to be wonderful members of the family. If a family history is available, that should be your first measure of health, not fur color.
The stigma surrounding certain colors of Doberman can be bought to navigate, but their personality will undoubtedly put any hesitancy to rest.
Dobies are considered highly intelligent, with a pension for activity. This breeds intense loyalty, trust and playfulness is what makes them such excellent family members. Not to mention the added protection they provide if someone they love appears to be threatened.
While some may see it as a negative trait, the Doberman is known for never wanting to grow up. This breed maintains puppy-like characteristics until about three or four years of age. However, a lot of his personality depends on how early and well you are able to socialize your dog.
Depending on whether you’re working with a breeder or looking to adopt a Doberman, you may not always get to choose the exact color you want. So be sure to familiarize yourself with all of the controversy surrounding Doberman coats, and if possible avoid unethical breeders. Don’t disregard a Doberman based on his color because chances are you’ll be passing up on a wonderful personality.