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Hello everyone,

I wasn't sure where to post this, so I'll just post it here.

I am very interested in adopting a Doberman. I'd prefer to get a pup from a rescue or a shelter to save a life and also so that I can train it at a young age. I just want a close companion who loves to play and is loyal. Having a protection dog would be nice too. I've never owned a dog before and never had one during my childhood because my parents were highly allergic.

Before making the jump, I did have a few questions. I currently live in an apartment with my fiancee, so not having a yard is a big concern for me. Does anyone have any experience with Dobermans in an apartment? Also, I currently have two cats. I don't think my cats would bother a dog, but I do worry about a big dog harassing my cats. Are Dobermans commonly friendly to cats?

The dog would be left home alone, but never more than 3 hours at a time. Are Dobermans likely to get into mischief being left alone?

That's about all the questions I have as I've already read up on their temperament and behavior and am ready to accept having an active dog. Any other suggestions would be great as well.
 

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First, welcome to DT!

Most dogs, dobes included, can be fine in an apartment as long as their owner is dedicated to giving them the exercise that they need. As for cats, that's more of an individual dog thing. If you adopt through a doberman rescue that puts their dogs in foster homes they'll be able to match you with a dog that is good with cats.

As for mischief - yes, usualy. Dobes are smart and full of energy so when they get bored they will find something to do. This usually comes in the forum of slaying dragons (ie, stuff), lol. I, along with many others here, crate my dogs when I am not able to supervise them. The dogs love their crates and while they are in them I can be assured that they are safe, not destroying anything, and not swallowing anything that could hurt them.
 

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Welcome! In rescue you will be able to find exactly what you're looking for. With the dogs bring in foster homes, the group will be able to match the right dog with you because they will know the dog's personality.

I have owned and fosters Dobermans in apartments. One of my past foster dobes was very quiet and just enjoyed lounging around, she was never destructive or a nuisance. My Doberman is a big wuss around the cats, he wants to play and cries if they swat at him. Of course, there are dobes that will chase and kill cats, and that can be very destructive. Just be completely up front with the rescue in what you are looking for.

Apartments are great because it makes you have to get up and get out with your dog :) of course the potty break part of it sucks...I used to live on the 3rd floor in a complex.
 

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Welcome to the forum! :)

I have a small garden at my house and we only use it for morning and night timestoilets, so I cant imagine living in an apartment would be an issue at all as long as the dobe is getting plenty of exercise and you can be bothered to take the dog out to the toilet! :) I'd imagine it would make toilet training a little harder, since you'd have to take your pup outside all the time.

The cat thing wouldnt worry me if you're getting a rescue puppy (whom you can train to respect the cats) or an older rescue who has already been brought up with cats. I do have friends with Dobermann type breeds (and other breeds youd expect to chase cats, greyhounds ect) who brought a dog into their home who actually wanted to kill the cat for a good 6 months, but eventually they got used to each other and now they're fine. It was a lot of stress for that time though, and I still dont think i'd want to leave them alone together where the cat couldnt get away. You could crate your dog or use a stairgate to separate off an area for the cats to have space away from the dog.

I dont think 3 hours is too long to leave most Dobermann (obviously they are all different- some could be left much longer others not for long at all) I'd just want to make sure the dog has got plenty of things to do (stuffed kong toys for example) and has had plenty of exercise. On Mondays and Tuesdays my boy is left on his own for 5 hours and he literally gets ont he sofa when I leave and doesn’t get up until I get back! (I have webcams watching him) so if you get a nice laid back dog I cant see it being a problem at all.

Good luck in your search :) Cant wait for pics.
 

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Thank you, thank you, thank you for considering adoption!

Most pups give you a hard time about leaving them alone, but will grow into it with time. I do not think 3 hours is too long to leave a pup, but you must make sure it is well exercised, in a secure place (kennel), and has plenty of SAFE toys for mental stimulation.

Before jumping in with a Doberman, try to familiarize yourself with the breed. Look up your local chapter of the DPCA and see if there is anyone in the club willing to introduce you to their dogs or any Doberman-related events going on in your area. This will give you more information on what to expect.

Also, what types of activities will you be interested in doing with your dog? Dobermans are fantastic dogs when given an outlet for their intelligence and energy.
 

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My responses in bold. :)

Hello everyone,

I wasn't sure where to post this, so I'll just post it here.

I am very interested in adopting a Doberman. I'd prefer to get a pup from a rescue or a shelter to save a life and also so that I can train it at a young age. I just want a close companion who loves to play and is loyal. Having a protection dog would be nice too. I've never owned a dog before and never had one during my childhood because my parents were highly allergic.

If you're in Iowa, you are probably within the adoption radius of Illinois Doberman Rescue. Illinois Doberman Rescue | Doberman Adoption | Rescue Assistance - take a look around and read up on our policies, and see if any dogs catch your eye! I'm in the Des Moines area and my current foster dog is Hugo.

Before making the jump, I did have a few questions. I currently live in an apartment with my fiancee, so not having a yard is a big concern for me. Does anyone have any experience with Dobermans in an apartment? Also, I currently have two cats. I don't think my cats would bother a dog, but I do worry about a big dog harassing my cats. Are Dobermans commonly friendly to cats?

My dobes (including my foster) think cat-chasing is good sport, but they'd never actually hurt my cats. Not all dobes are cat safe though.


I did survive in a small apartment with two Dobermans. It was a ton of work, but we made it successful by spending every free moment out on walks, hikes, runs, bike rides, etc.


The dog would be left home alone, but never more than 3 hours at a time. Are Dobermans likely to get into mischief being left alone?

Crates are your best friend. 3 hours is just fine, especially for a crate-trained dog.

That's about all the questions I have as I've already read up on their temperament and behavior and am ready to accept having an active dog. Any other suggestions would be great as well.

If this is your first dog, I'd highly recommend meeting a few Dobermans and really getting a feel for their personality. As I said, I'm in the Des Moines area and would be happy to let you meet my dogs (in a public place, of course!) Both are/were show dogs. One primarily does obedience, rally, and lurecoursing now, while the other is my IPO (tracking, obedience, protection) dog. Dobermans are naturally protective, but owning a dog specifically trained in protection is a huge commitment and responsibility. I love doing protection work with one of my Dobes, and he loves it too, but it's a lot of work.
 

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I live in a small duplex. I just did have the yard fenced, it was a pretty large area. Best thing I did. I also take my dog to doggie day care so she can play w/dogs and be handled by other people.
YEP, you need a crate as they said. My dog is 2 yo now, but for the first year and half she was only out of the crate when I was there or just stepped outside for trash. When they are worn out they aren't as destructive. Good luck. I have a cat. Dog and cat have their own relationship, but Kiss doesn't want the cat to sit with us. I think that's just her possessiveness. It's gotten better with time. She is also around cats at doggie day care, so that has helped, too. :)
 

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Apartment living can work, but be prepared that it can be a lot more work that having a house with a yard. We did not have a fence the first year we had Shanoa and it was a lot of work to take her out on leash all the time, especially as a puppy. Another thing to be aware of, since you do not own your own home, is that it can be tough to find a rental with a Doberman. Quite a few places will have breed and/or weight restrictions. We've seen too many stories on here of people who could not find rental housing with a Doberman. Again, it can be done, but it can also be difficult, so be prepared for that.

Like some have said, some Dobes are cat safe, some not. With an adult rescue you will probably have a better idea of what you're getting in terms of prey drive with small animals. My rescue boy (adopted at age 8) had previously lived with a cat, and now he lives peacefully with five of them. My girl, who came home as a 17 week old puppy, has always struggled to be good with our cats. She's safe, but only with the cats she knows (as in, she would eat our foster cats), and only in the house. Her prey drive is very high and we are very cautious.

Crate training is good for dogs. Some dogs, when older, are fine and can be trusted gated in a certain area, or even free in the house. Some dogs need to be crated whenever you aren't home.

I'd take Sizzledog up on her offer to meet her dogs, if you haven't spent a lot of time with Dobermans before. I think it's really useful to see just what you're getting into!
 
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