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post #1 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 12:41 PM Thread Starter
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Intact Males

Anzio is 5 months old now and doing great. Full Dober shark and I look like a cork message board but we are in it to win it. For those of you who have a male and opted to not neuter, I am interested in hearing a bit about your experience in that regard. What can I expect. Getting chatter from others about leg lifting and more prone to aggressive behavior and on and on. Any feed back is welcome.


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post #2 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 01:03 PM
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My boy is 2.5 years old and not altered. He has zero behavior issues and is not aggressive - whoever told you that is giving you false information!

The only 'problem' is that he stops and marks on our hikes every ten feet if I let him and licks pee off plants (but altered dogs do this too!). He responds to 'leave it' though so if it isn't a good time he moves along happily. He has never humped anything in his life and has been around females in heat with no issue. Not sure if this is genetic or not... He came from a great breeder and American show lines, he is a wonderful dog all around.

So in essence, the only thing you have to do differently is keep him away from females in heat (or keep him on leash) and that's about it if you can't 100% garantee he won't get to females I'd have him altered, isn't worth the risk. We have fenced property and he is always on leash so I don't worry about it.

Your vet may poke you about altering him too but just be kind and say no thank you.
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post #3 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 01:07 PM
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First off.... The puppy biting. This will pass! A lot of folks spend endless energy trying to mitigate this behavior. With my last pup, I just let it go for the most part. When he got really rough, he was timed out. But thats pretty much the same way I deal with most over the top unwanted behavior young pups. So, the bottom line is that he quit his "play/teething biting at about 6 months. 2 months later, friends were still asking what had happened to my arms. LOL.

I've owned both neutered and intact male Dobermans. About 50/50 in fact. The boys not left intact were done at about 2 1/2 The main difference that I noticed was a distinct reduction in marking and pee licking. In fact my worst offender gave it up totally within 2 months of his operation. They also pretty much lost any interest in that annoying habit of crotch sniffing (both human and canine). The real relief is not having to worry about unwanted pregnancies.
I honestly have never noticed any temperament change due to neutering, although I have heard of others that have.

Having read quite a a bit recently about the pros and cons of this topic. I have decided this go around to leave my youngest, who will be 2 next month, intact. That is unless a medical situation arises, where castration is called for.

Oh.... one other thing. Back when I was doing leash free environments, like dog parks, it did seem to me that my boys garnered less negative attention from other males.

There is a great deal of current studies that been done available on the internet. I suggest that you dive into those before making a decision. And personally, I would take any advice to neuter from a vet with a grain of salt.

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post #4 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 01:45 PM Thread Starter
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I have an electric fence going in and he is only off leash in an enclosed area. i.e. ball field etc. While we have no bitches in the immediate area who knows what is out there if he roamed. Yes vets all want to do it,self serving you know. My boy is from American working lines as well. Grand parents schutzhund champs. My mind is pretty much made up on the matter. While unplanned impregnation is a serious enough concern,more alarming to me is aggressive behavior. Thank you and best to you guys.

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post #5 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 01:57 PM
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I have a neutered male (done at 20 months). He is going on 10 years and will still mark on anything I'll let him and licks urine. He shows signs of aggression towards other male dogs with the exception of a few but that is more a breed trait than one regarding whether the dog is intact or neutered. Search same sex aggression on DT and you can read about that.

An electric fence 100% will not keep him in if there's a female in heat nearby and it also opens up the possibility of another animal (dog or wild) getting on your property and having a nasty fight with him. I would put up a real fence whether you neuter him or not.

Discuss with your breeder and vet whether you are a responsible enough owner to leave him intact. There are statistics out there that point one way or the other but what really matters is if you are capable of making all arrangements if he's left intact.
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post #6 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by slimwomack View Post
For those of you who have a male and opted to not neuter, I am interested in hearing a bit about your experience in that regard. What can I expect.
In all likelihood, prostate problems eventually.

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post #7 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 02:25 PM
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Personally I wouldn't keep an intact dog, male or female, with just an electric fence. Other dogs can still get in and your dog will charge that fence and blow right through the 2 second zap to get to a female in heat. They can smell when a bitch is in season up to like, a mile or something away. You should put in a physical fence or keep him on a long line of you are going to keep him intact, in my opinion.

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post #8 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 02:27 PM
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Via greenkouki:

"An electric fence 100% will not keep him in if there's a female in heat nearby and it also opens up the possibility of another animal (dog or wild) getting on your property and having a nasty fight with him. I would put up a real fence whether you neuter him or not."

@ slim

If you are talking about an electric "invisible" fence, gk is absolutely correct. They can be pretty much worthless on Dobermans. Throw a bitch in heat into the mix and they become TOTALLY worthless. My sis has a Weim, a GR, and an AmStaff. Her fence works fine on the pitty and the golden. The 11 yo Weimaraner? Forget about it. picks his spot charges and he's free. This is what a driven Dobe would do. The biggest problem is that once they are out, they won't use that drive to get back in. So essentially, you will have locked your dog out.

If you are talking about a physical electrified fence, say 5', you are using overkill to keep a dog in. Keeping deer out or cows in.... Sure.

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post #9 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 02:46 PM
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I have a very different experience with electric fences. My last boy was trained in one at my house and he did great. I live in a nice neighborhood that restricts privacy fence and I'm not about to put up 10k worth of Cheap, hideous, 1960 chain fence.

I trained my last boy on the fence at around 5 months and had 0 issues. I believe he got to close only two times and the fence was set on the lowest setting through his whole life. If you do it right and are committed to the training they do work. I went with a nice setup though, not one of the wal mart or pet smart deals. My boy was fixed at around 1.5 years. As for animals coming in, I'm not one to have my dog outside for long unsupervised. He would potty, we would play and he was ready to be back inside on the couch with family.

The truth is that these 4-5 foot fences that people are touting won't keep your dog in if he wants out bad enough either. A 6-8 foot is the only thing I would be confident of a Doberman not clearing. It all comes down to proper training in my opinion.
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post #10 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 03:06 PM
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Hey d...

Yeah, all dogs are different. A couple of questions:

Was Jager intact? What was his drive like?

I absolutely agree that a 5' fence will not keep all dogs in. I once had a boy who could easily scale an 8' chain link fence. Like out of the movies! LOL. It was stupid me that taught him that "trick".

He had a large outdoor/indoor exercise kennel. I had to top the fence with angled barbed wire braces (facing inward) and string them with plain wire. Took him about 2 or 3 tries, falling back down and he gave up. Now THAT fence was escape proof. Oh...until our little mutt girl realized how easy it was to dig under the jump proof fence. Ugh...

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post #11 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4x4bike ped View Post
Hey d...

Yeah, all dogs are different. A couple of questions:

Was Jager intact? What was his drive like?

I absolutely agree that a 5' fence will not keep all dogs in. I once had a boy who could easily scale an 8' chain link fence. Like out of the movies! LOL. It was stupid me that taught him that "trick".

He had a large outdoor/indoor exercise kennel. I had to top the fence with angled barbed wire braces (facing inward) and string them with plain wire. Took him about 2 or 3 tries, falling back down and he gave up. Now THAT fence was escape proof. Oh...until our little mutt girl realized how easy it was to dig under the jump proof fence. Ugh...

John
He was neutered between 1.5-2 years. After more research I will keep my new boy intact as long as no problems arise.
I feel he had a pretty high drive, but I can also say he was amazingly well behaved so "no, or leave it" was all he ever needed if I saw that doberstare that I knew could lead to a chase. He also preferred to be in sight of his humans so I'm sure that helped. We would hike off leash and he would never go more than 15-20 yards away from us. He never had any training past intermediate obedience so maybe it was just his personality that kept him close.
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post #12 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 03:48 PM
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The truth is that these 4-5 foot fences that people are touting won't keep your dog in if he wants out bad enough either. A 6-8 foot is the only thing I would be confident of a Doberman not clearing. It all comes down to proper training in my opinion.
I wouldn't even count on a six foot fence to keep a determined dog in. My 22" tall Ilka can clear my nearly 6' tall chain link fence in one jump, or at the most a jump and scramble. I'm pretty sure that, with the right incentive, she'd blow right through an invisible fence. She doesn't go outside without either my husband or me to supervise.

My main complaints about invisible fences are that 1) they don't keep people and other animals out; 2) if a dog does blow through for whatever reason, the zap can prevent them from coming back into the yard; and 3) some dogs figure out that if they get close enough to the barrier for the warning beep, but not get zapped, they can run the collar battery down.
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post #13 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-21-2016, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
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The truth is that these 4-5 foot fences that people are touting won't keep your dog in if he wants out bad enough either. A 6-8 foot is the only thing I would be confident of a Doberman not clearing. It all comes down to proper training in my opinion.
I wouldn't even count on a six foot fence to keep a determined dog in. My 22" tall Ilka can clear my nearly 6' tall chain link fence in one jump, or at the most a jump and scramble. I'm pretty sure that, with the right incentive, she'd blow right through an invisible fence. She doesn't go outside without either my husband or me to supervise.

My main complaints about invisible fences are that 1) they don't keep people and other animals out; 2) if a dog does blow through for whatever reason, the zap can prevent them from coming back into the yard; and 3) some dogs figure out that if they get close enough to the barrier for the warning beep, but not get zapped, they can run the collar battery down.
I see the concern for other animals. I'm like you though, my dog isn't unsupervised outside so I'm not worried about that. As for people, if they want in, a 4-8 ft fence won't deter them. I had a good experience with the underground fencing. I hope my new boy does just as good. As I said though I put a lot of time into proper training and respecting boundaries. I didn't just turn him loose to figure it out.

For probably the last 2 years of my boys life, the fence collar sat in a drawer at my house not even being used. Once he learned the boundaries and my expectations, he never once offered to leave the yard even with the collar off.
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post #14 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-22-2016, 10:19 AM
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My experience with an invisible fence was the same as yours.
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post #15 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-22-2016, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slimwomack View Post
Anzio is 5 months old now and doing great. Full Dober shark and I look like a cork message board but we are in it to win it. For those of you who have a male and opted to not neuter, I am interested in hearing a bit about your experience in that regard. What can I expect. Getting chatter from others about leg lifting and more prone to aggressive behavior and on and on. Any feed back is welcome.
I keep only males and have since the mid 1960's. Nearly all have remained intact their entire lives. Two were neutered as older dogs (6 and 10 for prostate issues) and one at 3-1/2 because he was so intent on looking for bitches (in or out of season) that his brain cells did not connect--and we had some plan for him in performance work that wasn't happening unless we could reduce the level or distractablity.

As far as I'm concerned some of the "issues" that people complain about with intact males are actually training issues. My intact males are not aggressive or at least are expected to behave well when on leash toward strange dogs and all have lived with other intact males so are expected to behave politely toward thier housemates (and I DO NOT recommend that other people try to keep multiple males--what has worked for me and my dogs is not generally going to work for others).

Leg lifting in my home or in the homes of others or vet clinics does not happe--I stop it in its tracks when they are very young and first start the behavior. I can walk my intact or neutered males through buildings where dog shows are being held and remind them once if they seem to be too interested in the doorway or garbage can that other males have peed on and they lose interest immediatly.

Many of the fences that my dogs lived with were only 4 feet--but there was never an issue with them jumping out. Every dog I've ever owned could easily clear a 4 foot fence and the Afghan Hound and at least two of the Dobes could clear 6 feet from a stand still. The Aussie could scale anything of any height.

I don't like the buried electric fencing for all of the reasons given earlier in this thread so I won't belabor that issue.

And puppies, when they come to live with me stop being sharks within the first two or three weeks--I hate being mouthed, nipped or bitten so I don't tolerate it. And I have far less tolerance than John (4 x4 bike) does--so when a puppy opens his mouth and puts it on any part of me or my clothing all interaction stops--I walk away and if necessary the puppy goes into a crate for a brief time out--I've pretty much stopped trying to distract with toys since it was never very successful for me although it has been for others.

And I've never seen any substantial personality change in the few dogs I have neutered as adults. The biggest change was in the 3-1/2 year old--he became much more intent on interacting with whoever was training him, me or the friend who handled him in trials, that looking for bitches. But that wasn't a personality change per se.
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post #16 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 08:46 AM
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Having worked (in the past) for the humane society. I can tell you that electric fencing fails more dogs than it helps. I have seen hundreds of dogs a year brought in as strays because they left their yard.

I currently have an intact male and I agree with bug that most issues people have with intact makes are training issues not dog issues.
My male goes everywhere with me. He has never lifted his leg inside any building. He lifted his leg in my home as a pup once and lost all freedom for weeks afterward and has never done it since.
He goes into other people's homes and many different businesses and again no leg lifting.

I've never had a nippy puppy so I can't help you there.
My male (dogs) are never left in the yard unattended.

In the long run it really depends on the dog and his personality, and level of training you choose to put on the dog, and how much socialization you do over the long term.


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post #17 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryAndDobes View Post
In all likelihood, prostate problems eventually.
Do you have any scientific proof for this?

A great number of men also have prostate cancer in later stages of their life....do you also suggest we start neutering young boys from an early age to prevent this?

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post #18 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 10:59 AM
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Do you have any scientific proof for this?

A great number of men also have prostate cancer in later stages of their life....do you also suggest we start neutering young boys from an early age to prevent this?
I'm not Mary, who suggested that prostate problems were a reason for neutering and I doubt that either she or I suggest neutering young boys as a preventative for either prostate cancer or plain old benign prostatic hypertrophy (also common in human males in their latter years).

There is actually a fair amount of literature in the vet journals about when neutering a male canine is specific treatment for a variety of problems related to the prostate.

And locally I can think of two specific lines who had a very high incidence of prostate problems (mostly acute and chronic prostatitis) which started very early in thier lives--as young as 12 months. Unfortunately prostatitis is not all that easy to treat--many antibiotics don't reach the prostate (membrane barrier) and at least one of those that do should not be used on young dogs. And prostatitis is very painful for the male.

I don't neuter my dogs young and far more of my males have remained intact all their lives than have been neutered. But the two that were neutered at 6 years and 10 years were done specifically because of prostate issues.

Just saying...

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post #19 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 11:50 AM
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If I could turn back time, I would have kept Chase intact. All of his anxieties and Hypothyroidism popped up a month after neutering. It may be a fluke, but I do believe an intact dog is healthier. He was neutered at 2.5 years old and he has all of the 'Characteristics' of an intact dog, so if you are not a fan of lifting legs, seeking out bitches, the flehmen response at every blade of grass, and wanting to mark every 5ft...neutering will not stop it.

The key question is: Are YOU the right owner for an intact male. Can you be responsible enough to be vigilant, to make sure he will not reproduce?

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post #20 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by DogsR4Life View Post
The key question is: Are YOU the right owner for an intact male.
That's the million dollar question..

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post #21 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by MaryAndDobes View Post
In all likelihood, prostate problems eventually.
That is my concern too. The dog, out of two males I have had (one neutered, one not), that we left un-neutered did develop problems with recurrent prostate infections at about age 10, and castrating is the treatment for that. Neutering at age 10 is a different thing from doing it at age 2 or so.

But I don’t know what percentage of un-neutered dogs will actually develop that kind of trouble. Perhaps, though, it is another factor to consider when weighing pros and cons.

Lifting legs, other male behavior--I’ve heard that if you neuter them before those habits develop, chances are they will not start them up. BUT nobody (except for those people who are really worried about dog population control and irresponsible owners--like dog rescues or shelters) would suggest that neutering a dog before he is physically mature (1.5-2.5 years) is a good idea for the dog’s health. Marking, etc. is really a relatively mild annoyance, after all.

Last edited by melbrod; 08-23-2016 at 12:24 PM.
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post #22 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 12:44 PM
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I debated on mentioning this but since it relates to this thread and I'm having issues with Max in this regard, here it goes! Unless I missed it, no one has mentioned issues with "discharge" from the private areas. Max has had this issue since he first matured and for this reason alone I am considering neutering, as everything I've read says neutering will stop the discharge. I haven't made this decision easily. I did not plan on neutering him at first. However, it's a problem and I believe he would be much more at peace if it were stopped and I would be also. It's not that there's discharge all over the place or anything like that, but Max is one of those that feels he needs to keep himself extremely clean and he is very frequently licking himself. It is also seriously affecting my sleep as he wakes me up many times through the night doing this. I mainly feel sorry for him as it's a constant burden to him. Please note that I've asked my vet many times and she has checked him and says it's normal and there does not appear to be any infection or problem like that. She has also told me that neutering will stop this.

Any further thoughts or advice on this??!!!!

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post #23 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iceman View Post
Do you have any scientific proof for this?

A great number of men also have prostate cancer in later stages of their life....do you also suggest we start neutering young boys from an early age to prevent this?
Maybe TMI, but castration is one of the suggested treatments for men with aggressive prostate cancer.

AZDoberDad, Lucky, my Rattie, was neutered at just under 6 months, and would sometimes have smegma build up. Also, geldings (castrated horses) can have smegma build up. One aspect of good hygiene for stallions and geldings is sheath and penis cleaning.


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Last edited by Rosemary; 08-23-2016 at 12:53 PM.
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post #24 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 12:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZDoberDad View Post
I debated on mentioning this but since it relates to this thread and I'm having issues with Max in this regard, here it goes! Unless I missed it, no one has mentioned issues with "discharge" from the private areas. Max has had this issue since he first matured and for this reason alone I am considering neutering, as everything I've read says neutering will stop the discharge. I haven't made this decision easily. I did not plan on neutering him at first. However, it's a problem and I believe he would be much more at peace if it were stopped and I would be also. It's not that there's discharge all over the place or anything like that, but Max is one of those that feels he needs to keep himself extremely clean and he is very frequently licking himself. It is also seriously affecting my sleep as he wakes me up many times through the night doing this. I mainly feel sorry for him as it's a constant burden to him. Please note that I've asked my vet many times and she has checked him and says it's normal and there does not appear to be any infection or problem like that. She has also told me that neutering will stop this.

Any further thoughts or advice on this??!!!!


so, let me get this straight now....you are thinking of neutering your dog because he licks his private parts?












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post #25 of 55 (permalink) Old 08-23-2016, 12:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iceman View Post
That's the million dollar question..
Am I the right owner for an intact male? If the only criteria is can I keep an intact male from impregnating a bitch?--it's not a problem and I've got 57 years of intact males to prove that--no unwanted pregnancies, no accidental breedings and not even any close calls...<g>
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