Dobermann Breed Standard
GENERAL APPEARANCE - Medium size, muscular and elegant, with well set body.
Of proud carriage, compact and tough. Capable of great speed.
CHARACTERISTICS - Intelligent and firm of character, loyal and obedient.
TEMPERAMENT - Bold and alert. Shyness or viciousness very highly
HEAD AND SKULL - In proportion to body. Long, well filled out under eyes
and clean cut, with good depth of muzzle. Seen from above and side, resembles
an elongated blunt wedge. Upper part of head flat and free from wrinkle. Top
of skull flat, slight stop; muzzle line extending parallel to top line of
skull. Cheeks flat, lips tight. Nose solid black in black dogs, solid dark
brown in brown dogs, solid dark grey in blue dogs and light brown in fawn dogs.
Head out of balance in proportion to body, dish faced, snipy or cheeky very
EYES - Almond-shaped, not round, moderately deep set, not prominent, with
lively, alert expression. Iris of uniform colour, ranging from medium to
darkest brown in black dogs, the darker shade being more desirable. In browns,
blues, or fawns, colour of iris blends with that of markings, but not of lighter
hue than markings; light eyes in black dogs highly undesirable.
EARS - Small, neat, set high on head. Normally dropped, but may be erect.
MOUTH - Well developed, solid and strong with a complete dentition and a
perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. the upper teeth closely
overlapping the lower teeth and set square to the jaws. Evenly placed teeth.
Undershot, overshot or badly arranged teeth highly undesirable.
NECK - Fairly long and lean, carried with considerable nobility; slightly
convex and in proportion to shape of dog. Region of nape very muscular. Dewlap
and loose skin undesirable.
FOREQUARTERS - Shoulder blade and upper arm meet at an angle of 90 degrees.
Shoulder blade and upper arm approximately equal in length. Short upper arm
relative to shoulder blade highly undesirable. Legs seen from front and side,
perfectly straight and parallel to each other from elbow to pastern; muscled and
sinewy, with round bone in proportion to body structure. Standing or gaiting,
elbow lies close to brisket.
BODY - Square, height measured vertically from ground to highest point at
withers equal to length from forechest to rear projection of upper thigh.
Forechest well developed. Back short and firm, with strong, straight topline
sloping slightly from withers to croup; bitches may be slightly longer to loin.
Ribs deep and well sprung, reaching to elbow. Belly fairly well tucked-up.
Long, weak, or roach backs highly undesirable.
HINDQUARTERS - Legs parallel to each other and moderately wide apart.
Pelvis falling away from spinal column at an angle of about 30 degrees. Croup
well filled out. Hindquarters well developed and muscular; long, well bent
stifle; hocks turning neither in nor out. When standing, hock to heel
perpendicular to the ground.
FEET - Well arched, compact, and cat-like, turning neither in nor out. All
dewclaws removed. Long, flat deviating feet and/or weak pasterns highly
TAIL - Preferably docked at first or second joint; appears to be a
continuation of spine without material drop.
GAIT - Elastic, free, balanced and vigorous, with good reach in forequarters
and driving power in hindquarters. When trotting, should have strong rear
drive, with apparent rotary motion of hindquarters. Rear and front legs thrown
neither in nor out. Back remains strong and firm.
COAT - Smooth, short, hard, thick and close lying. Imperceptible undercoat
on neck permissible. Hair forming a ridge on back of neck and/or along spine
COLOUR - Definite black, brown, blue or fawn (Isabella) only, with rust red
markings. Markings to be sharply defined, appearing above each eye, on muzzle,
throat and forechest, an all legs and feet and below tail. White markings of
any kind highly undesirable.
Ideal height: Dogs 69 cms (27 ins) at withers
Bitches 65 cms (25½ ins) at withers
Considerable deviation from this ideal undesirable.
FAULTS - Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a
fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in
exact proportion to its degree.
NOTE - Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully
descended into the scrotum.
Utility Group A.N.K.C. © January 1998