The Rottweiler, often referred to as the "Rottie", is a powerful, athletic dog. They are intelligent, easy to train, and are renowned for their loyalty. Rotties are stoic protectors of their families and homes, and have excellent fighting and hunting skills. Rotties have short, dark thick coats, and they are considered average shedders. They do not require to be bathed frequently and dog grooming should be done on an "as needed" basis.
Rottwielers are considered reliable and are often employed by police and the military. While the Rottie is friendly and loving towards family members, it is known to be aggressive towards strangers. When brought up with children, Rotties can be loving, but should not be left unattended in the presence of children, especially if they are unfamiliar with them. Rotties are ok with other animals, providing they have had positive experiences with them when young. Socialization is particularly important for this breed, because it has aggressive tendencies.
Male Rottweilers can grow up to 69 cm and weight between 85-130 pounds. Bitches grow up to 63 cm and can weight up to 115 pounds. Despite the size and athletic nature of this breed, Rotties can live quite peacefully in an apartment, providing they are exercised frequently. Rotties do not tire easily and love to swim and jog. At the very least, these dogs should be walked daily.
A Rottweiler will live for about 10 years, but is prone to hip dysplasia. Meals should be monitored, because this breed tends to overeat. Rottweilers are calm creatures, but benefit from owners who aren't afraid to discipline them. Rotties often require intense behavioural training, and need to feel their owner is "in charge". While they can understand commands quite easily, they tend to go through a stage, usually between 4-8 months, where they are "deaf" to their owners. This is a common tendency of the Rottie and, if the owner remains strict and consistent, only temporary. It is merely a phase the dog goes through in an attempt to assert its individuality. Despite their aggressive tendencies, Rotties require lots of love and attention, and become depressed and aggressive if chained outside for long periods of time.
Rottweiler puppies should not be weaned from their mothers between 45-50 days of age and will require daily exercise. It is recommended taking different routes each day, which will help educate and socialize the puppy. Rottweilers have excellent memories and will remember traumatic events into adulthood. Try to avoid frightening your dog. Opt for quiet roads when walking, and try to make visits to the vet as pleasant as possible by bringing along lots of treats and toys. A Rottie's lifelong personality is usually onset by 2-4 months of age, so training before then is highly recommended. Rotties must be taught from an early age not to jump on people - this is especially important if there are children in the home.
Rottweilers make wonderful pets, but they aren't for everyone. They require a strict but loving owner, lots of exercise, and a family environment. If you decide to purchase this breed, be prepared for a long term commitment. Despite the hard work, Rotties are excellent family additions. They will shower you with love and protection right till the very end.