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I was just curious if anyone had owned aussies as well as Dobermans? Could you tell me what the differences tend to be as far as training, personality, etc? I have an female aussie now and am planning on a male doberman in the near future so I am curious about what to expect. From the descriptions I have of dobermans they seem very similar personality wise (goofy, velcro dog, really smart). Thanks!
 

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I haven't owned an Aussie, but I grew up with Shelties which are similiar. With my experiences, dobermans and my shelties had a lot in common. Very intelligent, very attached to their people, and sensitive. The differences that I've found is obviously the protective nature of the dobe. My shelties were very sensitive and when our home was robbed, hid and cowered. Already, Gunner has shown that he's much different in that regard. He's also a lot less driven meaning that he doesn't follow me around constantly looking for a job. As long as he's beside me, he's content.
 

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I feel like aussies are much more biddable out of the gate - once they "get" something or know what you want they take it to heart. The way they obey commands or certain rules can almost be robotic (i.e. my friend's aussie who we had live with us for 3 months would always stop at curbs. Always. Always. 100% no guessing her.)

Dobermans will challenge you much more especially as youngsters. I always say that if you give an inch they'll take 5 miles. ;) I am feeling like my (overall very very good) guy at age 3 needs a bit of a refresher right now to re-establish boundaries and rules because we haven't done much formal training over the last 6 months or so. He still takes any slack or laziness from me and puuuuushes to see where he'll get. He wants to please me, but it's not the same way as an aussie lives to please.

I feel like Dobes at home are a little more goofy. More snuggly/physically affectionate.

Of course each dog is an individual. I'm betting Lori Z will chime in soon - she has had a bunch of Aussies and now also has a Doberman.
 

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Waves hand, hello. I have lived with several aussie's over the years had three and have one left, Ginger who just turned 14. In my opinion they are nothing alike. LOL. Now I have to say my boy is independent and stubborn so he is different from the get go.

Okay with my aussies I could basically raise an eyebrow and they would react "huh? what? you want me to do this, or this or this?" A wonderful quality I might add. With Eli I need a 2x4 and then maybe he will understand I want him to do something. LOL, No I don't hit my dog with a 2x4 but training him is nothing like training the aussies. That being said he is very well trained now at almost 3 but he still has an independent side.

Another great thing about aussies is that they are very light on their feet and they know where each foot is at all times. I don't remember ever being tripped by one of them, if in mid step putting away laundry I remembered something and turned the aussie got out of the way and turned with me on a dime. Eli, my dobe, uh not so much LOL. I have turned and smashed into him numerous times. He is unruffled when this happens and just looks at me like "hey, you make a decision to go one way stick to it woman". He does heel beautifully though and can change up directions when we are actually working obedience but in the house not so much.

My aussies always played gently and could get any dog/cat even parrot to play, all three were amazing in that way. Eli still plays with others like a bull in a china shop, it is his style so teaching him to be gentle with my little dogs and old gin the aussie has been an ongoing project. He is fine now but when he was a year, yikes!

My aussies were very sensitive and change could upset them not so with Eli, he is rock solid and approaches life in a very centered same attitude manner which is refreshing to me.

My aussies learned much faster BUT now that Eli is mature he learns very fast, when younger he just got bored even with treats as where the aussies lived to do things for me. I could talk to the aussies like I do people and they seemed to get it where with Eli if I want him to do something specific I have to give a command, then he does what is requested but if I am vague then forget it. I used the "get back" for an example in another post. With an aussie you can say, "get out, get back, back, move it, go on with you, go on, go" with Eli if you want him to move away you have to say, "back". If you say go he won't get it even if you wave your arm in the go away fashion. An aussie takes wonderful direction from hand and arm signals in every day use, my doberman does great when training but because he is a more idenpendent dog he doesn't respect gestures as well, again as he gets older he gets much more in tune.

Now that is just my experience and my doberman may be more headstrong than some. I know there are more biddable lines than his but I have to say I adore his personality. He is sincere, he is funny and he is very affectionate. I think the aussies (except my Sierra ) were much more moody, certainly Gus and Ginger were/are. I think if Gin had been younger when I got Eli they would have played more but she was 11 when I got him so he was a bit much for her, the body slamming and she wasn't the type of dog to put him in his place. My aussies all could go with steam all day outside but were mellow in the house, I hear a lot of aussies now a days do not have an off switch, mine did/do. Eli does too so they are a match there.

Feel free to ask me any more questions. I love both breeds but did get tired of the fur...;)
 

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My aussies were very sensitive and change could upset them not so with Eli, he is rock solid and approaches life in a very centered same attitude manner which is refreshing to me.
Ohhh... this. This is a noticeable difference to me, too.

I knew Lori would come through. :)

I will say though, that Silas is good at being gentle when needed, and pretty quickly with our smaller dog, however he still has a very classic Doberman boisterous smash/bash play style. But he is very careful and gentle with small babies or kids, and was never a problem with our parrot. He very, very rarely steps on me or smashes into me, like I've read about other Dobermans - maybe he's an exception to the overall rule there? But agreed, not nearly as light on his feet - they are much more like galloping goofs than tippytoed ballet dancers. :D
 

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But agreed, not nearly as light on his feet - they are much more like galloping goofs than tippytoed ballet dancers. :D
Well put my friend! Perfect description. In fact Ginger's registered name is Sierra's Autumn Dancer "Ginger" after Ginger Rogers. Of course the fact that she is a red tri worked with the Ginger too. lol.
 

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Well put my friend! Perfect description. In fact Ginger's registered name is Sierra's Autumn Dancer "Ginger" after Ginger Rogers. Of course the fact that she is a red tri worked with the Ginger too. lol.
All my girls and some of my boys have been light on their feet. Yoda is not very light footed but he understands hand gestures and go commands - we trained him in agility after all. Cato would always get out of my way with a quick hop up and back or sideways - very rare to tread on his toes or tun into him. The brick outhouse (named Yoda) OTH, doesn't mind being walked into. He is terrific with a little tiny dog or a wee puppy or any dog in playing. With little dogs, he and his brother Boris would immediately get down on the ground and respond to play with little ones instead of initiating it. Yoda is very appropriate - Jill was tiny when I brought her home and she immediately bonded to Yoda who loved her and protected her from the others.

So, very much by the breeder's line for how they are temperamentally and physically, and I think females are much different than males in my experience. I have had several dobes that I spoke to like people without giving commands per se and they would understand and do my bidding e.g. "I would really like you to get off the table when you have a moment..." and Dido would just flip off the table and wander into another place to lie down. "Why don't you go and see Daddy?" and she would go and jump into DH"s lap.

In agility, you need to train for the dog to comprehend several commands in sequence so that they know where they are going while they are doing something else. I think a lot of it is about exposure versus built genetically like Lori says the Aussies are.

IMHO.
 

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So, very much by the breeder's line for how they are temperamentally and physically, and I think females are much different than males in my experience. I have had several dobes that I spoke to like people without giving commands per se and they would understand and do my bidding e.g. "I would really like you to get off the table when you have a moment..." and Dido would just flip off the table and wander into another place to lie down. "Why don't you go and see Daddy?" and she would go and jump into DH"s lap.

In agility, you need to train for the dog to comprehend several commands in sequence so that they know where they are going while they are doing something else. I think a lot of it is about exposure versus built genetically like Lori says the Aussies are.

IMHO.
I would totally agree and I have tried hard to explain that I had to "teach" Eli to look to me, to pay attention to what I wanted. So not only did I teach him sit for example, which he learned quickly but over time he had to learn to look to me for cues even if I did not say it. In essence I taught him to be more biddable by structuring things just so. That is why it was harder to train him, am I makng any sense? He also can get so focused on one thing that he tunes out other directions so working with Eli and the ball, for example, is an awesome exercise for him because he has to do what I say verbally or with hand signals while still watching the ball, he is so intent on it, but he has learned to do complicated things with the ball now as his motivator. Still that was hard for him as it is his nature to tune out things when he wants/sees something.

If he is intent on galloping down the hall to the kitchen he had to "learn" to listen as I might direct him to do something else, or slow down (for the most part lol) and that took time and a lot of training. It's not that he doesn't love me or worship me even it's just that he is of one mind set and I had to work to open his mind to other things while he was doing one thing. Aussies seem to naturally take it all in. I believe your training in agility is paramount in getting your dogs to do several things at one time, taking it all in and listening also. If I were more agile, I would certainly practice that with Eli. ;) We have noticed as another example that when Eli fetches he watches the ball, if he doesn't see it he does not stop to listen to where it might have landed nor does he sniff it out naturally. I have worked very hard with him getting him to use his nose but he still very sight focused. He is an interesting dog to train for sure, much more like a sight hound really.
 

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Kip, my boy, is tremendously ball focused, and he will listen for the ball. On occasion he runs out a distance and turns to watch me for the ball, and watches for the throw. Even if I make the throwing motion in pretend, he continues to watch me. But if he misses the actual release, he will listen for the bounce and head toward it immediately, wherever the bounce noise came from.

But I see big differences between my two dobes learning style--Kip hangs on your every word and keeps trying different maneuvers until he finds the right one (unless there is a rabbit in the yard *sigh*).
Capri has to really try to keep from being impetuous and impulsive (and sometimes she doesn't try that hard *sigh*).

But they play with each other using the same body language and tactics--that's where their shared dobe heritage shows up the most, I think. Stalking and spin body slams.
 

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I have not really seen much similarity at all between Dobes and the Aussies at agility... The Aussie hair would do my head in though lol
 

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I have not really seen much similarity at all between Dobes and the Aussies at agility... The Aussie hair would do my head in though lol
Yep, in agility the Aussies go out with a tendency to eventually curl in and your work is to bring them in. With the dobes and hunting dogs, the tendency is to go straight out and keep on going so it becomes important that they also learn to listen for(and to) you for direction. The Aussies will hunt out obstacles and if you don't give them enough information they will make up their own course. Dobes make their own courses based on the run they are doing. The only things I have had for off-courses are contacts - my dogs would always prefer a DW or an AF over a jump or a tunnel. Jill prefers the table (WTF?) with an auto down. Aussies and Kelpies are more independent than BCs but all 3 are just plain different than Dobes. The whole dobe personal space thing makes a difference too.
 
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The Aussie hair would really drive you insane--twice a year I had drifts of Aussie undercoat everywhere no matter how often I swept and vacuumed.

And I saw very little similarity between my many Dobes and my one and only Aussie.

He was very smart and the majority of my Dobes have been very smart (dangerously so I sometimes think). He was far healthier basically than my Dobes and basically bulletproof. Lived to nearly 13 with no health issues--he developed lymphoma and I opted for palliative treatment only--primarily because of his age.

He was good to have around the Dobes--particularly the puppies--he taught them that hairy dogs were just more dogs with hair, and he was unflappable so they learned about not spooking at new stuff--he played endlessly with them and put up with a whole lot of pulling of hair and being chewed on with good grace.

I don't think Aussies are much like Shelties either. I think both Shelties and Dobes are more sensitive than Aussies. And I'll say ditto for independence--my Dobes always wanted to be touching but the Aussie was satisfied to be in the same room.

I'd be tempted to get another Aussie except for the hair issue--mine was a very fun dog to have around and he was a good match for the Dobes.

But they need a job and are even worse than Dobes for finding their own jobs if you don't keep them working at something acceptable.
 

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I don't think Aussies are much like Shelties either. I think both Shelties and Dobes are more sensitive than Aussies. And I'll say ditto for independence--my Dobes always wanted to be touching but the Aussie was satisfied to be in the same room.

I'd be tempted to get another Aussie except for the hair issue--mine was a very fun dog to have around and he was a good match for the Dobes.

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Now see, I have had the exact opposite experience. My Aussies (2 females and one male, the females being related) were very sensitive. My doberman is not. LOL LOL. My aussies always have/had to be touching more so than my doberman although he is a very affectionate dog. In fact old Gin who is 14 my last aussie is lying with her head on my foot as I type this, Eli the dobe is on the couch, same room but he doesn't like to be on the tile where I am using the computer now. He likes cushy surfaces. I will miss having an aussie when Ginger goes but will not miss the hair. My aussies were all very healthy, Sierra lived until she was 2 weeks shy of 15, Gus was 13 and ended up with throat cancer and Gin just turned 14 and *knock on wood* is going strong. I hear a lot of aussies are getting cancer younger now though and it seems to me as a breed gets more popular they begin to have more health problems. I am hopeful my next doberman, which will be a female is more on the biddable side, I had my dobe baptism by fire with my Eli boy. Since I survived and now have a wonderful dog I will do it all again. I can't rule out another aussie someday though. Maybe when the hair is a distant memory.
 

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We had working aussies on our ranch and they trained the first dobie to work cattle/sheep. They were very aware where their bodies were (unlike Emily) and never had to worry about getting T boned by them. Everyone that came to the house always gave the dobie a wide berth, but if push would come to shove, our male aussie was the protector. He never was nasty but he would watch and make sure he was aware of who/what was on the place. And NO ONE bothered our kids. If I couldn't find the kids, all I had to do was whistle and where ever the dog came from, that's where the kids were. The aussies that I groom have always held a special spot in my heart. They are all so sweet.
 

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Yep, in agility the Aussies go out with a tendency to eventually curl in and your work is to bring them in. With the dobes and hunting dogs, the tendency is to go straight out and keep on going so it becomes important that they also learn to listen for(and to) you for direction. The Aussies will hunt out obstacles and if you don't give them enough information they will make up their own course. Dobes make their own courses based on the run they are doing. The only things I have had for off-courses are contacts - my dogs would always prefer a DW or an AF over a jump or a tunnel. Jill prefers the table (WTF?) with an auto down. Aussies and Kelpies are more independent than BCs but all 3 are just plain different than Dobes. The whole dobe personal space thing makes a difference too.
Hehe, the table is such a WTF, for most handlers watching, but like Jill, George also LOVES the table/automatic down.

Aussies absolutely do make up their own course if you don't get the information out fast enough, or give enough cues. But, I think Dobes make up their own course when they consider their idea more fun than the one the judge and you had planned.

Basically, OP, Dobes/Aussies, think two different planets.
 

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Thanks for all of the responses guys! My girl is definately moody (though I have heard from other aussie owners that that tends to be a female thing) and very much has to be touching me (like right now she is under my computer desk on my feet). She is very focused on me and I know what you mean LoriZ about being able to use multiple words for the same command (seems like sometimes she understands exactly what I say lol). Sounds like the dobes, while very affectionate, are not as sensitive to every move you make in general. If I so much as shift on the couch my girl is looking to see where I am going lol. I am planning on doing agility as well as flyball with my dobe though so hopefully that will help him develop some focus on me and get him to pay attention to various gestures and such if he is not naturally inclined to do so.
 
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