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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-29-2020, 01:39 PM Thread Starter
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Question Dobermans and Children??

Hello everyone!

Me and my partner are looking to get a doberman in the near future.

We are looking at having children in around 2 years time and we aim to have the dog trained by the time we have children.

Should I be concerned about bringing in 2-3 children in to the house with the Doberman there? I have read a lot of mixed reviews about young children and Dobermans.

Thank you all!

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-29-2020, 02:14 PM
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We had some members that obtained their dobermans first and then children.
Kids are exhausting in their early years.
Dobermans need a lot of your time the first few years to establish good citizenship.
And they can be an expensive breed.
So to do all at once or close together in time .....It is a bit much IMO.
SUGGESTION: Get the kids In place first and when the youngest is 5 then get Doberman.
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Last edited by LadyDi; 08-29-2020 at 02:18 PM.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-31-2020, 09:59 PM
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I had dogs before kids - as long as the dog is well trained well socialized, and well loved, they normally totally assimilate children into the family. We had some issues with our rescued Greyhound when the kids were little, but the Doberman was fabulous with kids..... and you do have to train the kids well too! My kids are now in their 20's, and lived with multiple dobermans until they left for college. You do have to be careful with people - including kids - coming into your house. This breed is protective. I always had strict rules for the kids - no running and screaming in the house or yard if the dogs were out there. Never had an issue.
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Mary Jo Ansel

AKC GRCH/UKC CH Fitzmar's Command A Minute CGC "Harvard"
Fitzmar's Victory Hop Devil RN CGC "Jezebel"
Ch Jalyn One Moment Please "Mabel"
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-31-2020, 11:42 PM
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Hi Hanna. And welcome from the Pacific NW.

Like Fitzmar, I also had dobermans before kids..

My son, now 37, was raised with Dobermans. We had one when he was born. The dog actually slept in the nursery with the baby once he got used to having the new little "critter". around. My son and his wife have owned Dobes most of Their adult lives. (They have been together since highschool!)

Now my grandsons (1 1/2 and 4) are being raised with Dobermans both at their home and mine. Their interactions are fantastic. The oldest child is actually able to control McCoy with rudimentary commands like "sit", "stay" and "come". They sleep in the same room and McCoy always prefers to be close to both of them.

Our main advantage has been that both my son and my grandkids were introduced to the breed at birth and to very well trained and socialized dogs. When my son was young, we went to great lengths to introduce the dogs to his friends slowly and carefully. It was more a matter of training the kids rather than the dogs. We never had any problems whatsoever. Even our extremely same sex aggressive male was terrific with children.

So... While I am not saying that Dobermans are the perfect family dog for everyone, they have been for us.

John Lichtwardt
Portland OR

Last edited by 4x4bike ped; 08-31-2020 at 11:44 PM.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-31-2020, 11:44 PM
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I currently don't have a Doberman, but I have a female Vizsla (Sirah) who actually has the same age as my older daughter (5 years), well around 8 months older than my daughter. I can tell you with confidence that I wouldn't do it again, it was so tiresome! I had to exercise Sirah at least 2 times per day, but I mean really good exercise, around 1 hr early in the morning (around 5:30 in the morning) and 1 1/2 to 2 hrs in the afternoon plus SAR training on saturdays, and of course I had to go to work and help my wife with the baby, obviously she wasn't very happy I spend such amount of time with the dog, even though we knew from the beginning what type of dog we were getting. This for at least 3 years, Sirah is finally settled down and things were much calmer by the time second daughter arrived (two years ago). Good thing is my wife some times took out Sirah for long walks while I took care of the baby.
Oh and the money. The worst time was when Sirah got parvo, at 10 months old, with vaccination chart complete, absolutely unexpected... that left us without savings. Sirah came out fine at the end but it was a tough week. But you will need to be prepared for things like that.

I've heard all extremes when the dog arrives before the baby: dog being jealous of the baby, dog being overprotective or dog feeling fine with the new member of the family, but I think it's more on the dog's personality and how you prepare her for the new baby arrival, than the breed.

Soooo I would suggest, like LadyDi told you, to wait two or three years until dog or child is a little older.

Just sharing my experience, hope I don't scare you, but in the end all three girls are super attached, get along really well and I think it is an absolutely amazing experience for a kid to grow with a dog. Plus they look really cute together.

Last edited by Isra; 08-31-2020 at 11:48 PM.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-01-2020, 05:36 AM
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Welcome to the DT forum!

I'm a senior, so don't have experience with Dobes and very young toddlers in the house. However, before Covid-19 shutdown, both Spock and Eva would interact with elementary school students Pre-K-5 on a weekly basis during their therapy dog Read With Me visits. Never had a problem.

A recent mom, screen name "Radar2017" got her Doberman "Radar" before her son was born and posted many updates in the Girls Outside (chicken) thread:

Here's a recent update in Jan with some pictures:

From last July, when Radar was one and baby had arrived:

Ten Doberman Rules
Poke Everything.
It's New? Bark At It.
Moves? Chase It.
Doesn't Move? Smell It.
Liquid? Spill and Dribble It.
Treat or Food? Wolf It Down.
Not Food? Chew It Slowly, Be Quiet & Hide From Human.
A Toy? Shred & Destroy It.
Stuffed? De-Stuff It.
Bites You Back? Wrestle It!
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-01-2020, 06:49 AM
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I think I would sum it up this way:

1. A well-trained adult doberman is likely to do well when you bring a new baby home and introduce them carefully, and your kids will benefit growing up with a dog in the house. Dobes are good with kids.

2. Bringing a doberman puppy into a household with kids older than 4 or so is another way to bring a dog into a house in a way that is likely to be successful.

But a doberman puppy and a new baby is a heck of a lot of work, and a clumsy growing puppy with big fat feet and not much self control is tricky to handle around a crawling baby or toddler.

People talk about teaching a dog to get along with kids and focus on the dog's manners—the kids need to be taught too. They need to respect the dog, know not to threaten him in his possession of toys or food, and allow him a safe space of his own when he doesn't want to interact with them. The kids also need to learn how to play properly with a dog, not to do things that will encourage a young dog to try to play with them the way he would with another dog by jumping or biting at them.

And they need to be supervised—a dog and a young child, for example, should not play alone—parents need to be around to make sure everyone behaves properly.
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Last edited by melbrod; 09-01-2020 at 10:41 AM.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-09-2020, 02:18 AM
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I had doberman first and then child. Now my kid is 19 months old and my dog is two and half.

My doberman is really really really sweet with us, including our baby.My kid plays with his food, ear, toys, and they chase each other at home.

On the other hand, our dog is very alert, protective and suspicious about strangers, therefore I only trust him with my baby but I will never trust him with other children. If we have minor visitors, I will definitely crate him.

Due to Covid, our dog is the only friend of our baby. My baby is very protective about him too. Sometimes we let the dog play with our neighbor in his front yard, baby cried and tried to call puppy back because she thinks the neighbor is hurting him. Sometimes when a neighbor talks to our baby, the dog barks a lot too.

Anyway I think it really depends on individual dogs. Sometimes it is just luck.Our dobe barked at everyone whom he met for the first time, but he never barked at our baby when they first met. He was super curious about the baby and always wanted to check on her. He flew to the crib when baby cries. I think he understood that this baby is family.
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baby , children , newborn , safe

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