In the late 1800s, in the province of Thuringia, Germany, in a town called Apolda, the Doberman Pincer breed came into being. There, Herr Louis Dobermann worked part-time; as a policeman; as a night guard, as a dogcatcher, in the dog pound( dog pound means a animal shelter where stray dogs are kept) and most importantly for the breed, as a tax collector. His work collecting taxes was much different from the work as it is done today; he walked door-to-door, gathering the cash owed the government as he went. Often greeted with hostility, and sometimes downright ill treatment)
Herr Dobermann longed for a dog; fearless and athletic enough to offer him personal protection when he worked, intelligent and personable enough to also be a companion animal. Working at the dog pound, he was able to observe traits exhibited by the animals there; it’s believed he began his work using crosses from its populations. Dobermann was a careless record-keeper, so no one knows with certainty (though DNA may soon solve this puzzle) which breeds went into making today’s dog. He began to breed different types of (presumably) purebreds together; Rottweilers, Greyhounds, Shepherds, and the Beauceron are all known to have been used. In his mind, the ideal production or offspring would be a type of terrier; sharing their courage, perseverance, also showing fearless and determining attitude
the word “Pincer” in German even means “Terrier.”
A long run for perfection
The Doberman Pincer “type” (the characteristics of his new breed) seems to have come into being during the 1880s, and by 1890 was consistent enough that the breed was considered established. Herr Dobermann’s dog looked quite different than those of today; a bit shorter and smaller, but heavier bodied, and having a longer haircoat. Today (except for the coat, which has become very short and hard), European Dobermans, especially those of Germany, most closely resemble his Pincer.
Herr Dobermann had a strong aesthetic streak, as well; he set about giving his canine a bold and graceful image. Playing up the long lines of the neck and muzzle, cropped ears gave the dog the appearance of being constantly alert; while the popularity of a few pups, born with a mutation wherein they were tailless (they actually had nubs), led to the practice of tail-cropping.
What we have now
Herr Dobermann had done his work exceedingly well; in 1899 the breed club, the National Dobermannpinscer Klub was founded, by 1901, Dobermans were recognized by the German Kennel Club! The breed was named after him, with the added appellation Pincer, honoring his original concept. In the United States they were appended to the registry of the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1922, and today are consistently listed among the top 15 breeds in the country. Unless specially trained to be fierce and aggressive, today’s dogs are generally gentle, but protective, their dangerous reputation is undeserved; it is a very surprising fact that innocent Cocker Spaniels are more likely to be involved in biting incidents than Dobermans.. Dobermans are also very, very intelligent and famously stubborn, they need early obedience training and a strong, calm, and consistent master who’ll assume the Alpha role; if their owner doesn’t step up, the dog will fill it himself!