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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi all,

I've been researching doberman breeders for a long time now and am trying to make a list of reputable European breeders. I'm in the Netherlands myself.

  • I first and foremost look for breeders that breed for longevity (this means they use lines with no-little occurence of DCM and/or sudden death and use lines with many dogs that reach 10+ in age).
  • Secondly, a breeder that breeds for stable temperaments (read; No aggression and no-little SSA). I don't care if it's a work, pet or show type. I'm willing to work hard for whatever dog I end up with. I'm inclined ro say that in Europe, you need to look to working lines for health. (Different in US)
  • Thirdly, a breeder that raises the dogs in the house and starts socializing the puppys from day 1.

This is what I have so far:
  • Jotunheim dobes (has no working website, very hard to contact it seems)
  • Briskas
  • Ascomannis (website seems a bit old and their target audience seems to be people who will do real life work with their dog)

These are honestly the only 3 I found to be the most reputable. As you can tell it's a very short list, hence the question here!

I'm from the Netherlands, but all the breeders here don't seem to breed for longevity and I see some terrible names in their lines that are known for DCM litters (Pride of Russia, Altobello, Del Nasi etc.)

Greets
 

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Bitten Jönsson (Jotunheim) is easiest to contact through facebook. You can also contact her through her database's website.

I would not really consider Ascomannis on this list anymore unfortunately. They do not like questions on the longevity/health of their lines (they don't reply really) they don't seem to be forthcoming with information... I believe Ascomannis falls in the category of breeders who happened to have long-lived lines, rather than breeders breeding for it specifically.

Ataraxie was trying to do that but she announced that she would stop breeding recently.
Warringhof has a lot of longevity in their lines but I am not sure about the kennel vs house setting. Excellent working dogs.

Weisenstein in Germany - dogs live and are raised in her house, she cares a lot about health and temperament, breeds for working ability.

Bo Valcone Dobermann Kennel in Serbia - breeds older females and males, selects for longevity and health. He works with both showlines and working lines, selects for temperament and working ability as well as balanced structure. But above all health and longevity. He is not like the majority of other Serbian breeders with flashy fancy adds full of nothing... I am not 100% sure if he holters as well as echos, but again unlike the vast majority of other breeders in his neck of the woods he actually does yearly testing.
An example of how he advertises his litters:
Dog Sleeve Dog breed Carnivore Font
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
@Artemis

This is exactly the type of reply I was hoping for, thanks a lot.

I did actually know about Ataraxie and was sad to see they quit, but I understand their reasoning completely.

I wasn't aware of the one in Germany and Serbia, so I'll look into them!

Serbia...I honestly don't want to go near the eastern countries due to reasons I don't need to mention. But I also understand that just because a country is notorious for bad breeding practises, does not mean there is not 1 reputable breeder to be found in that country. They're just hard to find for the average person that is not from Serbia themselves.

The funny part is that the Breeder from Serbia fits my requirements a bit more than the others. Initally I was looking for a pet/show (let's say; easier to handle for a first time dobie owner type of dog), not a working type dobermann that has a huge drive. But after doing research I found out that a lot of reputable dobermann breeders by default tend to breed for work. So I was ready to take on a working dobe and do the neccesary work to keep them sane.

So it's nice to see a reputable breeder that keeps temperament in mind and has a nice hybrid of show and work temperament.

One of my best friends is actually Serbian and goes there quite often, so she could help me with culture and translation if neccesary.
 

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You can find him through his facebook page! He is very nice, no time for nonsense. He speaks English. He actively condemns the hypertype and molossoid trends perpetuated by a lot of breeders in eastern europe.
I would say he is worth reaching out to. As with anyone, ask for proof of health testing but I am sure he will be very happy to discuss his mindset and approach to breeding healthier longer lived dogs.

There is actually another serious, honest breeder in Serbia (Frenchman living there) who mixes South American showlines with European primarily show but sometimes working lines, however the big asterisk with him is that because he had such success in producing longevity with his first am/euro mix litter (they are now over 12 and all made it past 10) I'm under the impression he is a little too convinced that mixing can bypass pedigree so for example one of his latest litters I'm not a fan of the pedigrees health/longevity wise neither on the south american or european sides.

However he is honest, he talks about health testing he is not afraid of using an older stud or female (one litter he just had with a female who is 4 years old and it was her very first litter). So I'd say he has good practices in general.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I just researched the breeders you sent a bit and it does look very good so far. My hope is that by the time I'll go look for a dobie pup, that these breeders have not dissapeared!

The euro and american mix is interesting. I have heard that many breeders are not fond of mixing the lines, but that it could be a big step to diversify the gene pool. I myself am not a fan of the American dobie that much.

There is, by the way, another breeder that seems to use many of the healthy working type lines from Europe we discussed but is based in US. They're called Apexe Dobermanns. I found them through a DCM/longevity facebook page. I'm based in the Netherlands, so a bit too far for me but maybe someone else from US can look into them if they stumble upon this thread and are also looking for reputable breeders :)

A big plus for the two breeders in germany is that I can easily request to visit them since I live in the Netherlands.
 

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I just researched the breeders you sent a bit and it does look very good so far. My hope is that by the time I'll go look for a dobie pup, that these breeders have not dissapeared!

The euro and american mix is interesting. I have heard that many breeders are not fond of mixing the lines, but that is could be a big step to diversify the gene pool. I myself am not a fan of the American dobie that much.

There is, by the way, another breeder that seems to use many of the healthy working type lines from Europe we discussed but is based in US. They're called Apexe Dobermanns. I found them through a DCM/longevity facebook page. I'm based in the Netherlands, so a bit too far for me but maybe someone else from US can look into them if they stumble upon this thread :)

A big plus for the twi breeders in germany is that I can easily request them for a visit since I live in the Netherlands.
Apexe is Ashley Stursa. @Kansadobe bred to her stud Marco last fall and I got to meet one of the puppies at the UDC national this past spring, I was very tempted to discreetly walk off with her hahah! I also bred to Ashley's stud Marco, but sadly my litter did not take with my older female. I will hopefully try again with that female's daughter next winter. I'd consider her a really good friend now. She is actually stepping out of her comfort zone with one of her upcoming litters. She is breeding a Marco daughter who is out of east euro showlines (the old Sant Kreal lines before they got polluted with Fedor & Co.) to a stud that is 75% american 25% european for the purposes of increased diversity. But funnily enough someone on right on this forum said her dogs look like American line dogs and they were talking about her 100% working lines. FWIW she has two people on her waitlist from France (whom came from my waitlist but that I referred after the litter did not take) so she has no problem exporting puppies.

The breeders who aren't fond of mixing the lines generally are those who have prejudice against one line or the other. Working breeders are prejudiced against show lines (both euro and am), european show breeders are prejudiced against working and am showlines, and american show breeders are prejudiced against working line and european showline. A lot of breeders rely on linebreeding to maintain consistency in type and temperament so outcrossing so far can seem like a big leap. It can also be scary venturing into the unknown - if you're familiar with the strengths and weaknesses and the ailments/issues in specific lines but don't know anything about a new line, it can feel risky like you're going in blind by bringing something new.

Also it can be frustrating to be boxed in or classified as something based on the perception of others, or getting to be known for one particular thing when that's not your intent.

Additionally because of the various breeding rules in european countries and the banning of cropped/docked dogs as even participating in european competitive venues it makes it extra challenging to import quality breeding animals from Asia or the Americas. Inversely in North America most breeders are show oriented and importing from europe means all natural, with increasing number of breeders not wanting to breed untitled dogs/bitches, this makes it challenging.

So then that means the accessibility of high quality dogs from all gene pools is limited depending on where you are and most of us are not made of money, unfortunately lol.

It's challenging enough making good pairings with similarly bred dogs it can be daunting to look past type and find the parts that best mesh together. To my knowledge the majority of breeders who are line mixing are in the Americas, but even in North America there is only a handful. Brazil and Argentina have started importing Euro show dogs like crazy and integrating them. Kansadobes on this forum is one of the breeders I would consider has excelled and specialized in line-crossing for decades now.

With that being said the #1 Dobermann in Poland for the past two years is a South American import, 75% American, 25% Euro. Even my staunch euro friend wants to breed to him.

My dogs are North/South American with a teensy bit of European further behind (G litter v Neerlands Stamm and D litter v Frankenhorst whom were imported and incorporated into the Marienburg program). I have had people ask me if they're American or Euro. One male in particular looks very typical of what people think as a euro stereotype - bulky, muscular body with a squared off muzzle and head. So I'm curious, what do you dislike about American dogs?
 

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You are going to find that everyone has their favorite and there is no objective measure of who breeds the best longevity. Since you are in Europe yourself and say you do not care for American dogs or crosses, why are you seeking information here? There are many good breeders in Europe and especially right in your back yard in Netherlands and Belgium. Why are you not searching there? Why don't you look into van de Donauhoeve, Van de Donauhoeve, or Wantij, Wantijdobermann.nl, or
Les Deux Peupliers, Les Deux Peupliers. A good place for you to look for a quality puppy is, Das Hundezucht Archiv – working-dog
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
@Artemis Again, interesting read and I had no idea you were befriended with the Owner of Apexe! I looked at the lines see used and was really impressed, especially since she herself is based in US.
I don't like the way the American showtypes look (they look smaller, lighter tan markings and on top of that most if not all are cropped which makes it hard for me to guess what they'll look like natural which is what I'd want.) I have heard here and there that they're more nervous and less confident than the average dog you'll see in europe. The last thing I want is a dog that is even slightly skittish or fearfull. But feel free to prove me wrong :) Also it is a 100% illegal for me to important a docked dobie from the US and it seems that almost all us show dobes dock very early on. I feel like it also just makes more sense to look a little closer to home as there are reputable breeders in Europe as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You are going to find that everyone has their favorite and there is no objective measure of who breeds the best longevity. Since you are in Europe yourself and say you do not care for American dogs or crosses, why are you seeking information here?
Isn't this an international forum and not just US? I even posted this in "Europe Region" haha, so I think this is the right place to ask. I'm already aware of all the dutch breeders you've sent me and more, but none of them would be in my top picks personally. They're nowhere near bad breeders, but I'm feeling a bit more confident with the other breeders I listed when I look at my personal requirements. But thanks for the input anyway 😁 !
 

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My male is out of Wantij on his mother's side. I really like most of his pedigree. I don't believe they breed much but his grand dam passed away at 13, I believe. His dam is alive and well at 10.5 with great cardio results. My male is 6 going on 7 with great cardio results so far.
 

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@Artemis Again, interesting read and I had no idea you were befriended with the Owner of Apexe! I looked at the lines see used and was really impressed, especially since she herself is based in US.
I don't like the way the American showtypes look (they look smaller, lighter tan markings and on top of that most if not all are cropped which makes it hard for me to guess what they'll look like natural which is what I'd want.) I have heard here and there that they're more nervous and less confident than the average dog you'll see in europe. The last thing I want is a dog that is even slightly skittish or fearfull. But feel free to prove me wrong :) Also it is a 100% illegal for me to important a docked dobie from the US and it seems that almost all us show dobes dock very early on. I feel like it also just makes more sense to look a little closer to home as there are reputable breeders in Europe as well.
I'm definitely not saying you should import from North America especially because you have some very good options in Europe! But don't be deterred by an Am/Euro mix, I often find they get the best moderate/balanced attributes of both.

As for temperament from American lines... from personal experience this varies and is really quite dependent on the individual dog and lines. A lot of the euro showline imports I've met have poor nerve, poor bounce back or both. There is a woman living in Germany right now with American (Mexican) females, who imported them after two consecutive dogs she got from Europe had poor nerve and temperament. As with everything it will depend on the breeder and how much emphasis they put on temperament. I know working lines who are weird and sketchy and lack confidence in any setting besides the training field.

I also personally know of an adult female who recently completely emptied/released her anal glands from fear/nervousness while doing her annual cardiology appt with a cardiologist she had seen before. She's imported from Europe and is all Euro showlines. On the flipside I know several dogs from American showlines who work as public access, task-trained service dogs which they could not do if they lacked confidence.

I hate generalizations in this breed because they often simply don't apply. I have found that it is really dependent on the individual lines/pedigree and program. I've come across attitudes from "temperament doesn't matter" or "temperament isn't genetic it's all the owner" to "temperament is the most important thing to me". You really have to get to know a breeder. I've seen nervy, insecure dogs in all gene pools on either side of the ocean.

For the lighter tan markings that is true. But you can find the full range I've seen Americans with deep rich rust red all the way to washed out markings. Again this will depend on the lines and the breeder's chosen emphasis. If pigment is something they find important to try and improve they will. If it's not important it'll be inconsistent.

In Canada breeders routinely leave docked but uncropped puppies so you can find examples of well bred dogs with natural ears. Much like european lines some will require taping to get the right set and others will be naturally beautiful. Tails are long and whip-like.
You can find a quick example here, this person got both of their Service Dog dobermans from Canada, from two different breeders. They are docked but have uncropped ears. The male is 10 years old (living with DCM however but active and semi-working).

This is a different female belonging to a friend, also from Canada (different breeder than the above) she required some taping. She is not fully mature, she'll be 2yo mid July.
Dog Dog breed Carnivore Collar Working animal

Dog Dog breed Carnivore Companion dog Fawn

Plant Sky Wheel Dog Flower

Dog Dog breed Carnivore Working animal Companion dog


Here is yet another one, she is from the same breeder as the black male on the instagram. She's young not fully a year old yet.
Dog Dog breed Carnivore Collar Pet supply


Dog Dog breed Carnivore Smile Companion dog


Dog Carnivore Dog supply Dog breed Collar



I left one pup uncropped in my first litter, trying to upload some pics from my phone. Her earset is 100% natural without any taping done and they turned out beautifully. In my observation the ears are slightly bigger when compared to the european dogs which I think helps weigh them down and keep the right natural shape.
 
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