FCI Breed Standard
Utilization: Companion, Security & Working Dog
Brief Historical Summary: The Rottweiler is considered to be one of the oldest breeds of dog. Its origin goes back to roman times. These dogs were kept as herder or driving dogs. They marched over the Alps with the Roman legions, protecting the humans and driving their cattle.
In the region of Rottweil, these dogs met and mixed with the native dogs in a natural crossing. The main task of the Rottweiler now became the driving and guarding of the herds of cattle and the defense of their masters and their property. This breed acquired its name from the old federal town of Rottweil and was known as the "Rottweil Butcher's dogs". The butchers bred this type of dog purely for the performance of usefulness. In due course, a first rate watch dog and droving dog evolved which could also be used as a draught dog.
When, at the beginning of the twentieth century, various breeds were needed for police service, the Rottweiler was amongst those tested. It soon became evident that the breed was highly suitable for the tasks set by police service and therefore they were officially recognized as police dogs in 1910.
Rottweiler breeders aim at a dog of abundant strength, black coated with clearly defined rich tan markings, whose powerful appearance does not lack nobility and which is exceptionally well suited to being a Companion, Security and Working dog. General Appearance: The Rottweiler is a medium to large size, stalwart dog, neither heavy nor light and neither leggy nor weedy. His correctly proportioned, compact and powerful build leads to the conclusion of great strength, maneuverability and endurance.
Important Proportions: The length of the body, measured from the sternum (breast-bone) to the ischiatic tuberosity, should not exceed the height at the withers by, at most, 15%.
Behavior and Character: Being good natured, placid and fond of children in basic disposition, he is very devoted, obedient, biddable and eager to work. His appearance is natural and rustic, his behavior self assured, steady and fearless. He reacts to his surroundings with great alertness.
- Cranial Region: Of medium length, the skull broad between the ears. Forehead line moderately arched as seen from the side. Occipital bone well developed without being conspicuous.
- Stop: Well defined.
- Nose: Straight nasal bridge broad at base, moderately tapered. Nose well developed, more broad than round with relatively large nostrils, always black.
- Muzzle: The foreface should appear neither elongated nor shortened in relation to the cranial region.
- Lips: Black, close fitting, corner mouth not visible, gums as dark as possible.
- Jaw: Upper and lower jaw strong and broad.
- Cheeks: Zygomatic arches pronounced.
- Teeth: Strong, complete dentition (42 teeth) with scissors bite, the upper incisors closely overlapping the lower incisors.
- Eyes: Of medium size, almond shaped, dark brown in color. Eyelids closely fitting.
- Ears: Medium sized, pendant, triangular, wide apart, set on high. The close fitting ears, set well forward, give the impression of a broad skull.
- Neck: Of fair length, well muscled, slightly arched, free from throatiness, without dewlap.
- Back: Straight, strong, sturdy, loins short, strong and deep.
- Croup: Broad, of medium length, slightly rounded. Neither flat nor falling away.
- Chest: Roomy, broad and deep (approximately 50% of the shoulder height) with well developed forechest and well sprung ribs.
- Belly: Flanks not tucked up.
- Tail: Docked at the first or second joint. In those countries where docking is forbidden by law, the tail may be left in its natural state
- Forequarters: Seen from the front, the front lets are straight and not placed too closely to each other. The forearm, seen from the side, looks straight. The slope of the shoulder blade is about 45 degrees to the horizontal.
- Shoulders: Well laid back.
- Upperarm: Close fitting to the body.
- Forearm: Strongly developed and muscular.
- Pasterns: Slightly springy, strong, not straight.
- Feet: Round, tight and well arched; pads hard, nails short, black and strong.
- Hindquarters: Seen from behind, legs straight and not too close together. When standing free, obtuse angles are formed between the dog's upper thigh and the hip bone, the upper thigh and the lower thigh and the metatarsal.
- Upper Thigh: Moderately long, broad and well muscled.
- Lower Thigh: Long, strong, broadly muscled at top and sinewy below, merging into sturdy well angulated hocks, not straight.
- Feet: Slightly longer than the front feet. Just as tight. Arched and with strong toes. No rear dewclaws.
- Gait: The Rottweiler is a trotting dog. In movement the back remains firm and relatively stable. Movement harmonious, steady, full of energy and unrestricted, with good stride.
- Skin on the Head: Overall tight fitting. When the dog is alert, the forehead may be slightly wrinkled.
- Texture of Coat: The coat consists of a top coat and an undercoat. The top coat is of medium length, coarse, dense and flat. The undercoat must not show through the top coat. The hair is a little longer on the buttocks.
- Colour: Black with clearly defined markings of a rich tan on the cheeks, muzzle, throat, chest and legs, as well as over both eyes and under base of the tail
Height and Weight
Shoulder height for males is 61-68 cm.
Shoulder height for bitches is 56-63 cm.
- 61-62 cm is small
- 63-64 cm is medium height
- 65-66 cm is large - correct height
- 67-68 cm very large
- Weight: 50 kg
- 56-57 cm is small
- 58-59 cm medium height
- 60-61 cm is large - correct height
- 62-63 cm is very large
- Weight: approximately 42 kg
- General Appearance: Light, racy, weedy appearance. Light in bone and muscle.
- Head: Hound-type head. Narrow, light, too short, too long or coarse head. Flat forehead. Lack of stop or too little (stop).
- Foreface: Long or pointed muzzle; split nose; roman nose or dished nose; aquiline nose; pale or spotted nose (butterfly nose).
- Lips: Pendulous, pink or patchy; corner of lips visible.
- Jaw: Narrow lower jaw.
- Cheeks: Strongly protruding cheeks.
- Bite: Pincer bite.
- Ears: Set on too low, heavy, long, slack or turned backwards. Also flying ears or ears not carried symmetrically.
- Eyes: Light, deep set. Also round eyes.
- Neck: Too long, thin, lacking muscle. Showing dewlap or throaty.
- Body: Too long, too short, or too narrow.
- Chest: Flat ribbed or barrel shaped. Lack of spring.
- Back: Too long, weak; sway-back or roach back.
- Croup: Croup too sloping, too short, too flat or too long.
- Tail: Set on too high or too low.
- Forequarters: Narrow or crooked front legs. Steep shoulder placement. Loose or out at the elbow. Too long, too short or too straight in upper arm. Weak or straight pasterns. Splayed feet. Too flat or too arched toes. Deformed toes. Light colored nails.
- Hindquarters: Flat thighs, hocks too close, cow hocks or open hocked. Joints with too little or too much angulation. Dewclaws.
- Skin: Wrinkles on head.
- Coat: Soft, too short or too long. Wavy coat, lack of undercoat.
- Colour: Mismarking, smudged, not clearly defined markings. Markings which are too spread out.
- General: Marked reversal of sexual type, e.g. feminine dogs or masculine bitches.
- Behavior: Anxious, shy, cowardly, gun-shy, vicious, excessively suspicious, nervous animals.
- Eyes: Entropion, ectropion, yellow eyes, different colored eyes.
- Teeth: Overshot or undershot bite, missing premolars or molars.
- Coat Texture: Very long or wavy coat.
- Coat Colour: Dogs which do not show the typical Rottweiler coloring of black with tan markings. White markings.
- Note: Males must have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.