DOBERMAN VS BULLMASTIFF
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HISTORICAL DIFFERENCES A German breed, the Doberman is named after its “father”, tax collector Karl Dobermann. The man needed an effective and obedient protection dog to take along on his rounds, but no contemporary breed fit the bill. So, he decided to create the dog he needed himself: He crossed Rottweilers, German Hunting Terriers and Pinschers with Great Danes, English Greyhounds and sheepherding dogs. His efforts were met with success: Mr. Dobermann produced an amazing breed - strong, intimidating and yet deeply loyal to its owner. Soon, the Doberman gained recognition all over the world. The Bullmastiff also is a designer breed that was created in the 19th century, albeit in Britain. As its name would suggest, it combines the Old English Bulldog and the English Mastiff. Just like the Doberman, the Bullmastiff was designed by people in dire need of a better guardian breed. In the Bullmastiff’s case, these people were the gamekeepers charged with catching poachers who hunted illicit game. To assist them, they needed a large, powerful dog, able to track down and apprehend the offenders - until they themselves could arrest them. And whilst the prevalent guardians of the time – the Bulldog and the English Mastiff – were either too aggressive or too slow for what they needed, crossing those two produced the perfect dog for the job. Since then, the Bullmastiff has become one of the most sought-after guard dog breeds on the planet. DIFFERENCES IN LOOKS The Doberman is a large, light-footed, and elegant dog with a short, single-layered coat. In colour, Dobies are almost exclusively black and tan, or chocolate and tan. A male Dobie can reach heights of up to 72 cm at the wither, which is 28 inches. Males weigh up to 45 kilos, which is close to 100 pounds. The Doberman’s head is narrow and elongated with no marked stop and a long muzzle. Traditionally, this breed used to have cropped ears and docked tails, but this practise has become illegal in many countries. Contrary to the sleek Dobermans, Bullmastiffs are sturdy, large-boned and well-muscled dogs. Their massive blocky heads are framed by uncropped floppy ears. The loose skin on their faces forms deep folds. In colour, the short-coated Bullmastiffs can be brindle, red, or fawn. Adult males reach heights of up to 69 cm – or 27 inches -, with a weight of up to 59 kg, or 130 pounds. The females of both breeds are slightly smaller and lighter than the males. INTELLIGENCE & TRAINABILITY DIFFERENCES Dobermans are keen and alert dogs – always more than happy to work, which makes them extremely easy to train. Highly intelligent, Dobies live to work and absolutely love using their physical and mental muscles. Which is why lots of mental stimulation should be provided for this active breed. One possibility to keep them sharp mentally is working them in the fields of obedience, tracking, guarding or canine sports. But also, regular walks in areas with lots of different smells, sights and sounds are excellent ways to provide both physical and mental stimulation for your Dobie. When it comes to the Bullmastiff, we are faced with an entirely different picture, and with amazingly high levels of stubbornness. Their tendency to think independently can lead to your Bullmastiff completely ignoring your commands - as though they have not heard you speak. But with that said, these massive guard dogs from England are fairly intelligent and trainable, just not quite as much as Dobermans. And they greatly benefit from a calm, consistent leader who has the patience and experience needed to train such an independent dog. TEMPERAMENT DIFFERENCES In their temperament, these breeds are very different – whilst the Dobie is active, keen, and alert outside and when working, the Bullmastiff does not feel the need to get all excited and worked-up. Both breeds are very affectionate towards their owners, and surprisingly calm and gentle indoors. Measured in their movements, they are not likely to wildly run around the house, chasing kids and cats, or knocking over your possessions. This is why Dobies and Bullmastiffs even make good apartment dogs. Of course, they both are loyal natural guardians, who can and will protect you and your home. Whilst both breeds get along great with children, I personally think that the Bullmastiff is the best family guardian breed on the planet: These dogs absolutely adore children and are astoundingly patient with them. The Doberman and the Mastiff are very people-oriented dogs who should be allowed to live in the house with their family. When it comes to their behaviour towards strangers, they are wary and reserved.