I got my first ever dobie ( a male red ) just over 8 yrs ago from Doris at Mikadobe. His name is Tuco. He's traveled with me all over and we even lived in Australia for a year. My best friend ever.
1) Doris is a good person who loves and cares for her dogs and was quite helpful to us.
2) On the negative side: just as he was about to trun 3 yrs old he became suddenly ill...a specialist did ultrasound ( liver biopsy ) and diagonsed him with genetic chronic active hepatitis...we put him on several meds permanently and changed his diet into a prescription gastroenteric diet...he could not get any intervenous injections ( not even for rabies ) because it might overtax his liver.
The next 5 yrs have been wonderful and he's been in great health, great energy, no complications and I have never missed a single day's dosage of meds and have only fed him the prescription food...
3) However, last week he became lethargic, began coughing, had shortness of breath and loss of appetitie...an ecg, some x-rays , etc. have diagnosed him with genetic overt dilated cardiomyopathy---a common doberman disease.
Doris told me when I got him eight years ago and asked about the lifespan of her dogs that they live about 8 yrs...
I refused to accept that and figured if I kept Tuco in great shape, fed him the best food,
exercised him daily, gave him multivitamins, etc. that he would live beyond that...But now he may have only six months to live which means he would have lived the eight yrs Doris told me.
Her dogs are beautiful, have great temperament and she is a good breeder but be aware that dobies have many genetic health problems ( especially liver disease, hip dysplasia and cardiomyopathy ) and be prepared to spend lots of money on the vet to care for your dog if he/she gets sick.
They are high maintenance, require lots of time together with with you and they may not live too long.
At the moment I am wrestling with the heart wrenching choice of whether to put him to sleep to keep him from suffering his last months--or to allow the natural process to take its course and simply care for him and be with him to the end...
I have been researching breeders for days now, and I found this forum very helpful. I found this breeder (manafidobermans.com) through one of the posts, and I am curious to know if anyone knows this breeder?
We are located in West Palm, FL and are looking for a breeder in the South East region.
I think recommendation was for mikadobe in Atlanta - and they gave us Sabrina's number. She sounds great on the phone, and we will go see the actual place soon.
Any info would be greatly appreciated.