German Rottweiler, American Rottweiler, Roman Rottweiler -- can all these labels refer to the same black-and-tan dog? The answer really depends on who you ask. While your Rottweiler cannot talk, you may notice a German accent when he barks, or he may pick up an American accent when living abroad.
If your Rottweiler has started speaking some slang and adores vanilla ice-cream and apple pie, most likely you have an American Rottweiler. All jokes aside, you may have heard that American Rottweilers are tall, leggy and lack the distinct blocky head expected in the Rottweiler breed. The truth is that an American Rottweiler is simply a Rottweiler born in the Unites States, according to R-CK Kennels, a non-breeding kennel in East Texas. Unfortunately, though, indiscriminate breeding in the Unites States has caused the spread of many Rottweilers who do not conform to the breed standard.
You may have heard about the German Rottweiler, a breed that loves bratwurst and beer and, most of all, boasts thick bones, a big, blocky head and an imposing, stocky body. The truth is that German Rottweilers are simply Rottweilers born in Germany, just as American Rottweilers are Rottweilers born in the States. These Rottweilers may appear to be different from the American Rottweiler for the simple fact that ADRK, which is the Rottweiler club of Germany, is very selective about the dogs allowed to reproduce. Indeed, breeding specimens must pass rigorous physical and temperamental requirements before the owners may breed them.
If your Rottweiler may have developed a preference for spaghetti and lasagna, there are chances you may own a Roman Rottweiler. In reality, this type of Rottweiler is an over-sized specimen, selectively bred to look more like a mastiff, according to Dog Breed Info. This increase in size does not adhere to the breed standard, though, and worst of all, comes with a hefty price: an increase in hip dysplasia and other orthopedic problems. The term "Roman Rottweiler" turns out to be a sales gimmick created by unethical breeders in hopes of attracting buyers. If you happen to stumble upon a breeder selling Roman, colossal or king Rottweilers, it is best to run the opposite way and find a "real Rottweiler" that adheres to the standard.
Every now and then, you may stumble on a breeder claiming to sell valuable and highly prized Rottweilers. Red, blue or albino Rottweilers may occasionally be advertised as highly desirable specimens. As enticing as these dogs may appear to be, they are not Rottweilers by standard and are believed to be the outcome of breeding a Rottweiler with a dog of another breed. Other "rare" Rottweilers include long-haired Rottweilers, which are considered a disqualification, according to the American Kennel Club bred standard.
When people see a Rottweiler with a natural tail, they often question if this is a different type of a Rottweiler or a different breed altogether. Rottweilers with tails are just Rottweilers with tails. Many German Rottweilers are seen with tails because, since 1999, the practice of docking tails has been banned in Germany. The ADRK standard, therefore, calls for a Rottweiler with a tail in natural condition, whereas the American Kennel Club standards calls for a tail docked short; however, the set of the tail is more important than length. More and more breeders are starting to show tailed Rottweilers, and where docking is permitted, docked or natural remains purely a personal preference.
So, which Rottweilers are the real Rottweilers? The real Rottweilers are those who adhere to the breed standard. The ADRK wrote a standard for perfection and the American Kennel Club and British standards along with all other standards are based on this, Richard G. Beauchamp explains in the book "Rottweilers for Dummies." If you would put a Rottweiler born to an American Code of Ethics breeder and a Rottweiler born to a German ADRK breeder side by side, you may be unable to tell them apart, according to R-CK Kennels. No matter the country of origin, the best representatives of the breed ultimately come from ethical breeders who breed to the standard. The bottom line is that there are ultimately two types of Rottweilers: the well-bred ones and badly bred ones, and the actual country in which a Rottweiler is born is ultimately what makes him an American, French, Italian, Canadian or French Rottweiler.
- RC-K Kennels: German Rottweiler or American Rottweiler?
- Dog Breed Info: Rottweiler
- Dog Breed Info: Roman Rottweiler
- A Love of Rottweilers: The Red Rottweiler And Other Rare Rottweilers
- Rottweilers for Dummies; Richard G. Beauchamp
- WC Rotts: What is the Difference Between the German Rottweiler and the American Rottweiler?
Adrienne Farricelli has been writing for magazines, books and online publications since 2005. She specializes in canine topics, previously working for the American Animal Hospital Association and receiving certification from the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers. Her articles have appeared in "USA Today," "The APDT Chronicle of the Dog" and "Every Dog Magazine." She also contributed a chapter in the book " Puppy Socialization - An Insider's Guide to Dog Behavioral Fitness" by Caryl Wolff.