Up until this day, many Doberfolks out there are still debating about whether male Doberman Pinschers are better than the female ones.
Some of them claim that male Dobies are highly social and, therefore, more suitable as family dogs. Meanwhile, others stick to the belief that female Dobermans are ideal pets because they are relatively smarter.
There are indeed several differences between the male and female Dobermans but both are superior in their own ways.
Male Dobermans are bulkier and heavier than female Dobermans because due to their larger build and more muscle mass. Male Dobermans are chosen to guard properties because they’re extremely territorial, while females are excellent personal guards because they’re always on high alert around strangers.
To end this debate about which gender is better, I have decided to compare every single characteristic of the male and female Doberman in this comprehensive guide.
Trainability, temperament, and guarding skills are among the features I will discuss in detail, so I suggest you keep reading if you want to learn more.
Does Dog Gender Really Matter?
Even though some veterinarians and breeders would tell you that dog gender does not matter, there are some critical differences between the two sexes that you should consider before buying one.
For instance, according to Stanley Cohen, a Professor Emeritus at the University of British Columbia, male dogs are known for their aggressive behavior triggered by the male sex hormone. They tend to threaten and challenge other animals frequently.
Meanwhile, female dogs are a lot more territorial and stubborn. When they start a fight, they focus on showing their dominance, unlike males who easily forgive.
When you decide to bring home a canine companion, you should first study their characteristics influenced by their gender.
You can do this by observing them for several weeks in the breeder’s facility, where you are going to purchase them to ensure that their behavior fits your lifestyle or the pet characteristics you desire.
Differences in Physical Features
Male Doberman Pinschers generally look like the female ones at first glance. But as you analyze each of their features, there are a lot of noticeable differences.
Male Dobies seem to look bulkier because of their muscle mass. Their bodies also have more hard angles than females, which is common in most dogs. If you look closely, you will also see that they have larger and chunkier heads that make them more masculine.
In terms of body mass, the Continental Kennel Club (CKC) official standards for a male Doberman states that they should be between 80 to 90 pounds. Meanwhile, their acceptable height is 27.5 inches. This is two inches taller than the female Dobermans.
Note that some Dobermans are broader, especially if they are of the European bloodlines. They may weigh 10 to 15 pounds heavier on average.
Many pet owners argue that female Dobies look more elegant because of their smoother coat, which is absolutely true. Their smaller size as compared to the males also contributes to the overall effect of their appearance.
CKC standards for female Dobermans states that their ideal weight is between 55 to 70 pounds, and their height should be 25.5 inches.
Although these two genders look similar in most pictures on the internet, once you see them in person, all these subtle differences will become apparent.
Differences in Temperament
Generally, male Dobermans are more laid back and easy-going than the female ones. They are also a lot goofier; that’s why many pet owners prefer them. Here’s a detailed analysis of a male Dobie’s temperament:
- Male Dobermans are really playful, but around four years of age, they tend to calm down and become more mature.
- They are more fun-loving and carefree than the female Dobermans.
- They get along well with strangers. In fact, you might even see them running and playing with them after a short period of time.
- They love pleasing their owners, so they should be given different tasks around the house.
- They are way clumsier than females, which is not suitable if you have kids at home.
- They can be messy. Expect to clean up mud or spilled water on your floor.
- They are easily distracted.
- They need to hear firm and clear commands or directions from their owner because they can be headstrong.
- They love attention. You’ll probably get annoyed when they repeatedly jump on you or run towards you without a break.
- They bond with the whole family and not just their owner.
Neutering is viewed as one of the most effective ways to alter some of a male Doberman’s behavior.
Although their fundamental personality will remain, there are some observable changes in their temperament after neutering as reported by Embrace Pet Insurance. They are the following:
- Their tendency to hump humans, objects, and other animals is lessened.
- If they are previously aggressive, this will somehow be diminished.
- Their activity levels will be reduced significantly.
- Their appetite may increase.
Unlike males, female Dobermans mature faster in the span of two years. This is why they are often the best choice for beginning Doberfolks. Below is a comprehensive list of their temperament for you to be guided:
- Since female Dobermans mature early, they can be a lot more serious and intense.
- They are easier to train in general because they can maintain their focus. Housebreaking is easy for them, too.
- They can be left alone inside your home without them being destructive of your furniture.
- They do not show aggression towards other female Dobies when they meet them outside, but it would cause a conflict if they are living in the same house.
- They are less welcoming of strangers because they aren’t that social than males who play and run with strangers immediately.
- They are not messy pets. They do not let water drool down from their mouth, unlike male Dobermans.
- They aren’t that good at bonding with the whole family. They prefer to stick and cuddle with their owner most of the time.
- They can be moody and emotional at times.
- They are smart, and they can sense your emotions. So if you need space, they’ll probably give it to you.
If you choose to have your female Doberman spayed, some behaviors might change related to their heat cycle. They are as follows:
- Spayed female Dobermans do not roam around while in heat, so the chances of getting lost are slimmer.
- Their frequent urination and bloody discharge will be eliminated.
- They won’t be irritable because they will no longer experience hormonal changes.
- Their aggression will be lessened most of the time.
This is a video made by a Doberman owner who is also a dog trainer explaining the key differences between the male and female Dobermans.
Differences in Trainability
Since male Dobermans are goofier and less mature than the females, they are a lot more challenging to train.
They remain childlike for several years, so it is hard to keep their attention during early obedience training or when you are teaching them tricks. You have to find out what pleases them to make the training a bit easier.
When it comes to house training, they can also prove to be a headache. Only when they reach the age of four will you find them strictly focusing on your commands.
But do not be discouraged. Dobies are smart pets, so if you consistently teach them, there is a higher chance that they will learn how to behave appropriately.
Another fact that you should know about the male Doberman is that they get distracted when you try to walk them off-leash. They might wander or scare people off because they are very social and playful.
Despite this tendency, they are still one of the breeds that excel in walking without a leash.
Male Dobermans are happy and carefree dogs, which makes them a bit difficult to train. But the good thing is, they love pleasing people, especially their owner, so if you invest more time and effort in training them, they’ll probably learn how to obey.
Female Dobermans are a breeze to train because they mature early. They can focus and grasp every single command that you want to teach them in just a short period of time.
You can potty train them at an early age so you won’t have to worry about them peeing or pooping on your floor or even your couch. You can also trust them to be left alone if you are going for a short grocery trip.
You may be wondering what makes them more ideal for training. Well, the answer is in their ability to tune with others’ emotions.
They respond better at praises and light corrections during obedience training because they can somehow sense if you are happy or disappointed in them.
Generally, they are like students who pick up what the teacher says in just one discussion. This is not a form of hyperbole. They are just that good.
In terms of going off-leash, they are also proven to be less distracted. You’ll have a peaceful walk with them in your neighborhood without worrying that they will run towards other people and scare them.
However, they aren’t perfect, just like the male Dobies. They are less eager to complete tasks because they are not a fan of pleasing others.
Differences in Guarding Skills
Although traditionally, male Dobies are tagged as the best guard dogs, it is not suggested to entrust them with your life. This is because they bond equally with every family member, and they get along well with strangers.
They are less suspicious of others than the female ones, so they would probably shrug off anyone who will try to approach you.
Female Dobermans excel more in protecting people because of their maternal instincts. They also bond well with their owner rather than the whole family, making them outstanding personal guardians.
Their ability to be easily trained and their tendency to stick to their owner’s side even when off-leash contribute to their excellent guarding skills.
Another helpful characteristic of the female Doberman is that they are always on edge when they see strangers. Meaning to say, they probably won’t let anyone near you if they are not familiar with their face.
Guarding property is the specialty of male Dobermans. Their relatively larger and muscular build can send a burglar running in fear. And who wouldn’t? Their bite force is 328 PSI.
They are very territorial creatures, so they show aggression to humans and pets that approach their boundaries. You’ll also see them marking the perimeter of your home by urinating around it. That’s how serious they are in protecting you and your family.
Although female Dobies can also serve as a guard to your property, they aren’t that effective. This is because they have a smaller build than the male ones, and their aggressiveness is not on par with them.
They are also not territorial, so there’s a tendency that they would only laze off when someone takes a peek at your house.
Differences in Dealing with Strangers
Male Dobies are a real sweetheart to strangers. They quickly bond with others, allowing them to pat or belly scratch them in no time. Although this may seem odd given their territorial characteristic, this is also entirely possible.
A study conducted by the University of Florida and Arizona State University found out that dogs seek attention from strangers due to location.
For instance, when you are at home with your male Doberman, and someone visited you, you’ll notice that they will approach your guests and try to play with them for the rest of the time that they are there. This is because they are in a familiar place.
Meanwhile, when you bring them for a walk in a new setting, they would not respond much to strangers and will continuously seek you for reassurance.
Unlike male Dobermans, females aren’t that welcoming. This is mainly due to hormonal reasons. When female Dobies are in heat, their mood is very much affected, making them more aggressive towards others.
The changes in their hormone levels cause irritability and nervousness, and their maternal instinct also goes into overdrive.
Differences in Children Engagement
I have already mentioned in the temperament section that male Dobermans are more carefree than females. They love spending their energy running and playing around the house, and this is a good thing because this proves that they are active and healthy.
However, they are also very clumsy creatures. They might knock over some objects inside your home, which may injure your little kid. Aside from these accidental injuries, they do not pose any other risks to your child.
Female Dobermans are more suitable for those who have children at home. Since they mature early, they are not as playful as the male ones. They are more cautious towards kids, and they develop good relationships with them.
Most pet owners would agree that some female Dobbies even consider the kid in the household as their favorite person. They would try to play with them and even sleep on their bed from time to time.
Unfortunately, females do not maintain the same energy as the male Dobies, so they eventually stop playing and spend time with their own.
Differences in Relationship with Other Dogs and Pets
Male Dobermans are traditionally labeled as alpha dogs since they want to assert their dominance among other breeds. It is suggested that they live with a female Doberman or another female breed instead of the same gender to avoid conflicts.
If you do not have any other choice or you really want to own another male dog in your house, make sure to have them neutered. This will lessen their aggression towards others.
Regarding the male Doberman’s relationship with other animals, I must say that they get along with them pretty well. This is because they are highly social. It would also pay off if they were immersed in a community where they encounter different animals at an early age.
The female Dobermans are not fans of dominance confrontations even though they are always tensed up in front of strangers. However, it is another issue when they are asked to live with another female dog.
Unlike males who stop fighting with the same gender once they have asserted their dominance, the females won’t stop until they have injured their opponent.
Same-sex aggression is one of the biggest problems with female Dobies and other dog breeds.
This is proven through research published in the Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association, which states that same-sex dogs manifest 79% of household aggression. Out of this percentage, 68% involved females.
Regarding the female’s relationship with other animals, they are less friendly than male ones. They still get along well, but they take a significant amount of time to warm up on another animal’s presence.
Differences in Family Companionship
There are a lot of advantages of having a male Doberman to be your family’s companion animal. They bond equally to every family member, so you won’t have to worry that they will show aggression towards them.
Their easy-going nature is also something that many people praise. You can practically bring them anywhere, and they will be able to bond with everyone. They are also more suggested if you have a variety of pets inside your house.
Another reason why they are perfect family pets is that they are good guard dogs. They will make sure that you are protected and even your property. You can also trust them to take care of your stuff during beach trips because they are that responsible.
If you have young children at home, then I recommend buying a female Doberman. They aren’t as clumsy as the male ones, so the possibility of accidental injuries are lessened.
Aside from this, they are easier to train and are less hyper. They can focus more on the commands you are going to teach them than their gender counterpart.
Female Dobies are also less trusting of strangers, so you are assured that their loyalty is solely yours. They will protect you at all costs from those she perceives as a threat to your safety. If you want a family pet that can also protect you, then the females are your best option.
Differences in Health Issues
Having a bigger body mass makes the male Dobermans more prone to a lot of diseases. They may encounter problems on their bones, joints, and hips more frequently than females.
Among all the conditions that they may get afflicted with, the most alarming is the dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) or heart enlargement. This happens when the heart muscle gets thicker, which can result in respiratory failure.
The symptoms of this health problem are weakness, shortness of breath, depression, and fainting.
To diagnose whether your dog has DCM, the veterinarian may perform an echocardiogram or heart ultrasound. If in case, your dog really has this condition, your vet will talk to you about possible treatments to extend his life.
Since female Dobermans are relatively lighter, they are not that susceptible to diseases that affect the male ones like dysplasia. They are also less likely to develop DCM because their heart is not that strained because of their body mass.
However, some may acquire Chronic Active Hepatitis (CAH), which happens when they are four to six years of age. This results from the inability of their liver to metabolize copper that is usually found in most dog food.
The copper build-up is toxic to dogs because it can lead to scar tissue accumulation. This can result in liver failure and even death. Here are the symptoms of this disease:
- Extreme thirst
- Abdominal fluid retention
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
Unfortunately, there is no cure yet for this condition, so your vet may just recommend a low copper diet for your dog. This means that you should make sure that you carefully read the label for its copper content when you buy dog food.
Dobies with this condition are also required to drink distilled water instead of ordinary tap water.
Aside from CAH, female Dobermans may also experience some problems that the male Dobies also suffer from. They are the following:
- Von Willebrand Disease: This is a bleeding disorder characterized by bloody gums, blood in the urine and stools, and nosebleed. This is not fatal and very much manageable.
- Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus Syndrome (GDV): When your Doberman is experiencing GDV, she will feel bloated and gassy. The primary symptoms of this condition are distended belly, stomach pain, gagging, and excessive slobbering.
Differences in Puppy Price
The difference between the cost of a male and female Doberman is not that significant. However, some breeders sell male Dobies at a higher price because they are believed to be better guard dogs.
The cost of an American Doberman, whether male or female, may range from $1,500 to $2,500. Those who cost $1,500 are usually pet quality Dobies, while those who are more expensive are show quality dogs.
If you choose to buy European Dobermans, expect that you will pay around $3,000 to $4,000 because they are more massive than the American Dobermans. Male ones are also slightly higher in price, but they still fall between the same price range I have mentioned.
Which Gender Is Right for You?
We have finally come to the most exciting part of this guide: the section where you get to decide which Dobie gender is more suitable as your pet companion.
Are male Dobermans perfect for your lifestyle? Or are the female ones more capable of making you happy? To help you choose, let me review some of the facts that I have presented in this guide.
Male Dobermans are suitable for:
- Those who would like to own massive dogs because they are way heavier than the females. They also look more dominant.
- Those who want dogs that are very sociable to strangers and other animals.
- Those who love energetic and carefree canine companions.
- Those who want to own a pet that can bond with the whole family.
- Those who like giving commands and being pleased by dogs.
- Those who would like a pet to guard their house, their yard, or any of their properties.
- Those who own a female Doberman or any other dog breed of the opposite gender.
Female Dobermans are suitable for:
- The casual pet owners who want to own a striking and elegant dog.
- Those who don’t have the patience to train dogs because female Dobermans are fast learners.
- Those who have children at home since they aren’t as active as the male Dobermans. They don’t accidentally knock off home items.
- Those who live alone because they aren’t really a fan of pleasing other family members.
- Those who need guarding because they make excellent personal guards.
- Those who want a dog that can sense their emotions.
- Those who need a pet that can be left at home when they need to run an errand.
- Those who prefer less aggressive dogs.
- Those who have male dogs at home because they don’t do well with the same gender.
Is It Easier to Find Male Doberman for Sale Than the Female Ones?
The short answer is no. You can also easily find female Dobermans from reputable breeders, and the quality is pretty much the same. However, you may find it hard to purchase them from the litter because some people make early reservations.
Male Dobermans are more in demand due to their ability to be great property guards. They are also more social as compared to females.
Do Dobermans Need Tall Fences?
Whether you are raising a male or a female Doberman, you need to install a relatively high fence. Why? Dobermans can jump up to 6 feet if they are of good health and quality.
Although they aren’t much of a fence jumper because they know how to respect boundaries (literally), it is still ideal if you can install a 6 feet fence around your house for privacy.
Remember that they are very territorial, and they may bark at your harmless neighbors if they assume that they are about to enter your property.
Can Dobermans Live in Apartments?
So you live in a small flat, and you are wondering if you can buy or adopt a Doberman. Well, the good news is you can.
However, if you choose a male Doberman, you need to commit to bringing them out for their much-needed exercise because they are much more active than the female Dobermans.
Will Dobermans Turn on Their Owners?
There is minimal possibility that a Doberman will turn to their owner no matter their gender because it is in their genes to protect people.
If you have heard from some pet owners that they are aggressive dogs, even towards their owners, that is just an urban legend that is fundamentally baseless.
To convince you, I suggest you read some posts from dog forums that will show you how tamed they are when it comes to those who own them.
Both male and female Dobermans are superior in their own way. It is just a matter of owner lifestyle, pet handling skill, and personal preference, which determines how superior a Dobie gender is.
The sex of a dog, particularly the Doberman, does not measure their overall ability. Training and socialization are still the primary factors that will dictate whether you will raise a Doberman with a superb temperament.
If you are still confused about what dog gender to choose, just choose blindly. I know this is reckless advice, but many pet owners are satisfied with their decisions, trust me.
This is because no matter what the dog’s gender is, if you put effort into obedience training and ensuring that they grow in a conducive pet environment, they’ll make great companions, one that will stick to you for several years.