12 Pros And Cons Of Owning A Rottweiler (Answered By Vet Tech)

Pros And Cons Of Owning A Rottweiler

If you love big dogs, you probably love Rottweilers too. I mean, who wouldn’t?

Their strong physique, brave personality, and cuddle-bug tendencies lead to an all-around show-stopping breed that is beloved by many. They are so loved that it only makes sense for them to be in the top 10 most popular breeds in America!

So, you’re probably searching for a new furry friend to bring home, and you’ve been considering a Rottie. When deciding to adopt a Rottweiler or not (or any breed for that matter), it is crucial to look at all considerations of the breed to determine if it would be a good fit for you.

Not recommended for first-time owners, these pups require plenty of effort from you, though the rewards are immeasurable if you’re up for the challenge!

So, what are the pros and cons of owning a Rottweiler?

Rottweilers are loyal, courageous, affectionate, trainable, intelligent, family-oriented, adaptable, and a perfect guardian for the home. However, Rotties are known to develop various genetic health problems as well as being naturally territorial. They require an experienced owner that will provide mental and physical exercise and plenty of socialization to end up with an even-tempered Rottie. 

Keep in mind that this article is focusing on the general breed standards for a Rottweiler. Every individual is different based on history and unique temperament, so your Rottie might vary slightly from what is expected (and that is okay)!

Let’s first take a look at the benefits that owning a Rottweiler will bring about, then we will dive into the drawbacks as well.

Pros Of Owning A Rottweiler

Rottweilers have a multitude of positive qualities that they bring to the table, so let’s get started!

1. Loyal

The first positive aspect of owning a Rottweiler is their unwavering loyalty towards their owners! If you already own a Rottie then you’ve seen this first hand, as this breed will seem glued to your side. And if you’re looking to adopt this breed, you can expect a reliable companion for any activity you do.

Now, I understand that for some people this near-invasion of privacy might be a con, but if you truly want “man’s best friend” in a dog, then a Rottweiler will fit the bill! And a Rottweiler’s vigilant and protective nature means that this act is done with an ulterior motive: to keep you safe!

On some occasions, it can feel slow to bond with your Rottie. On other occasions, your Rottie might bond with only one person in the family. If you aren’t the lucky one that your pooch admires fully, don’t fret! There are several things you can do to promote bonding with your pup and gain their loyalty towards you.

Once they know they can trust you, their dedication will never falter!

2. Courageous & Confident

Part of a Rottweiler’s demeanor is courage and self-assurance, and this may be the first thing you notice about this pup.

While a Rottie’s physical strength and robust size exude natural confidence as is, these pups still need a reassuring hand as they grow into their own personality.

With confidence and protective instincts together in one powerful body, it is easy for this breed to turn to aggression if not trained properly. Though this can be avoided if you remain attentive to raising your Rottie in an effective manner!

Early and appropriate socialization is necessary to show the ways in which your Rottweiler can utilize this courage in beneficial ways that are safe for everyone around.

Rottweilers are overall a very brave breed, and you’re sure to see this if you adopt one for yourself!

3. Affectionate

While Rottweilers may seem intimidating when you first meet them with their sizable head, stoic stance, and aloof demeanor, you’ll soon come to realize just how affectionate and goofy this breed actually is!

Those who own a Rottweiler can attest to this lovey-dovey attitude, as these pups will never turn down a cuddle on the couch. Don’t be surprised if they end up in your lap, either. Some dogs don’t get the memo that they’re a little too big for that.

Every individual dog will have a slightly varying temperament, but with the appropriate socialization from a young age, you can promote your Rottie’s inner chummy side and see for yourself why they are so beloved by many.

To give you a glimpse, check out this video that shows just how playful, funny, and loving these giants can be:

4. Guard Dog Nature

Historically, Rottweilers have long been utilized to herd livestock, protect money from getting stolen, and keep the home safe from intruders. Though we don’t have to tie our bags of cash around our dogs’ necks anymore, Rottweilers still kept these guardian instincts!

If you’ve been searching for a dog that will protect your loved ones and your home, the wait is over. Rotties will naturally want to keep you and your family safe from intruders and unfamiliar, possibly dangerous situations, even if they haven’t been explicitly trained to do so.

A plethora of people have long adopted this breed to defend their farms, shops, and homes alike, so it’s no wonder why this guardian trait is one of the pros!

5. Trainable & Smart

Despite the stubborn streak you might see in a Rottweiler, this will often be overshadowed by the next pro on the list: their trainability and high intelligence.

In coordination with their eagerness to please, Rottweilers will remain steadfast in their obedience to their owner and quickly pick up on commands. Rotties are known to be in the top 10% of all breeds when considering intelligence, and these smarts show through the wide variety of tricks these pups can learn and their affinity toward brain-stimulating toys!

Just to drive the point home, Rottweilers also excel in various jobs, such as search and rescue, police work, guarding, hunting, and even therapy work. There is seemingly nothing that this breed can’t accomplish thanks to their willingness to work and learn, which makes them truly stand out in their own right!

6. Adaptability

If you’re an adventurous, active person, a Rottweiler might just be your perfect companion. Thanks to how adaptable this breed is, you can take them with you to several different places for even more fun.

Once they are socialized and used to encountering new environments, Rotties adjust well to the changes and actually embrace these experiences presented to them (thanks to their courage, too). You can take these pups running, hiking, swimming, hunting, camping, or even to the pet store to pick out their favorite treat!

The double-layered coat on this breed also contributes to their adaptability, allowing them to stay warm in colder climates and shed as needed for warmer climates. And their strong physique and energetic lifestyle are the cherry on top, knowing they have plenty of energy to spend and resilient muscles to keep them moving to do so!

No terrain, weather, noise, or location will be too scary for the Rottweiler to handle, especially given their innate confidence and physical characteristics.

7. Family-Oriented

Anyone who already owns a Rottweiler can vouch for this breed’s loving attitude and ultimate devotion towards their family.

Gentle enough to play with kids (always under supervision), this pup makes a wonderful pet to grow up with them. The endless curiosity of a child will keep a Rottie on its toes and find enjoyment in playtime. With the proper introductions, Rotties can get along splendidly with other dogs in the household too!

Rotties will put aside their strength and resilience in order to be kind-hearted and vulnerable within their trusted family unit. A wonderful feeling to be accepted and adored by your Rottweiler, adopting one into the family will be more than gratifying for everyone involved!

Cons Of Owning A Rottweiler

It’s also important to take a look at the downsides of owning a Rottweiler, as nothing is going to be sunshine and rainbows all of the time!

1. Diet Requirements

The first negative aspect of owning the beloved Rottie is how much they actually eat.

It’s a given that large breed dogs will require more food than small breed dogs due to their mere size along with heightened activity levels. Rottweilers are no exception, as they need between 5-10 pounds of dry kibble every week to sustain their energetic lifestyle!

And as you already know if you own a dog, dog food gets expensive (especially the high-quality brands)!

To make things more complicated, Rottweilers are known to have sensitive stomachs. If your individual pup has sensitivities to food, then this will limit the options available to purchase. This is a significant factor to consider before you adopt this breed as hypoallergenic formulas are often more expensive and in more limited supply.

It is also important to note that allergies may require frequent visits to your vet in order to manage the issues at hand and keep your pup feeling his best!

2. Mental & Physical Stimulation Requirements

Depending on your lifestyle, a Rottweiler’s hyperactive nature can be a pro or a con. And hyperactive is no understatement, as Rotties need a range of 45 minutes to an hour of exercise every single day!

Because of their large stature and never-ending energy, this breed is not always suitable for urban or apartment living. They need space to run, herd, fetch, play- you name it!

Not only is plenty of space to let out the zoomies important but equally as important is providing various puzzles and brain games. Rottweilers are extremely smart animals and they crave having a task to do as they were bred to have a purpose! Without tasks to accomplish, this breed will get bored quickly.

You can keep your Rottie happy and fulfilled by offering a variety of durable and fascinating toys. Having several options will ensure that your pooch always has something productive to shift their focus towards.

This requirement is a prominent con for people who work every day at their typical 9-5 job. Leaving this dog home alone without enough mental or physical stimulation will eventually lead to boredom and destructive behaviors that we aren’t exactly fond of.

If you make accommodations to give your dog company at least once throughout the work day, provide various toys to keep him occupied, and allot time each day after work to prioritize him and his activity needs, then owning this breed is still feasible!

3. Territorial

Now, the Rottweiler’s protective nature isn’t all positive. The darker side of this coin is this breed being territorial.

Being naturally reserved around unfamiliar people and places, it is imperative that the owner stays vigilant with training and socialization. We want to show our Rotties the difference between bad strangers and good strangers so they can feel confident enough to engage in a friendly manner as they do with us!

Don’t just introduce humans, either, as letting Rotties interact with other dogs is also crucial to show them that being protective all the time isn’t necessary and that having fun (and sharing) with more than just their family is possible.

Without this proper socialization, Rotties won’t know how to control their reservations around others which may result in fear-based aggression as they are just looking to protect what they care for.

If you’ve rescued an adult Rottweiler, it can be even more difficult to train them since you don’t know their history. It’s likely they’ve lacked structure and/or socialization, so it will take more time and effort from you to teach them that the world isn’t out to get them.

And if you’re lucky enough to bring home a puppy, check out this video for some essential tips on training them:

4. Grooming

I have to admit, grooming a Rottweiler is not the worst con out there. However, it still is important to include in this list so you can consider all sides to owning this breed.

While Rottweilers may not shed the mere amount that a Golden Retriever would, they do still shed a lot! Every spring and every fall, Rottweilers will experience moderate to heavy shedding of their undercoats to prepare them for the upcoming season’s climate.

With this hair growth cycle, it is imperative that you brush your Rottie’s coat at least once per week and bathe him every 4-6 weeks, of course depending on the time of year and how much he likes dirtying himself outside you might also bathe your rottweiler more regularly.

This regular grooming schedule will lessen the amount of hair floating around your house, though it can be too tedious for some. If you’re not able to deal with hair living rent-free in your house no matter the number of times you vacuum, consider looking into other breeds that shed less.

5. Health Issues

Every breed is prone to its own health issues, and Rottweilers are no exception. This is probably the most important con to note of them all as the resulting medical bills can become very expensive and never seem to end once the problems start. Not to mention that it is difficult to see your beloved companion suffer!

Various health conditions are due to the genetics of the breed, though this does not mean they will definitively end up with these problems. With this higher risk, it is crucial to understand and recognize these ailments as they start developing to catch and treat them early on.

Hip dysplasia is widely seen in a multitude of large breeds, but with Rotties, they also experience elbow dysplasia. These conditions are from an inherited disease where the hip (or elbow) joints grow improperly and result in arthritis.

Canine osteoarthritis from dysplasia in Rottweilers is unfortunately very commonly seen in the hospital I work at as they reach their golden years. There are ways you can ease the pain your pooch is feeling with various medications and supplements. Ensuring they are at a healthy weight and meeting exercise requirements can limit this problem from arising sooner in life as well.

Other health issues that can be seen in Rotties include cataracts, various cancers, digestive disorders, ligament damage, hypothyroidism, and heart disease. Check out this useful article that extensively describes each condition that this breed may face and how to get ahead of them; there are more than you might think!

Closing Thoughts

It can be difficult to break the stigma of Rottweilers being aggressive and mean when all they are is just misunderstood and not always trained properly. Despite this public view, thousands have brought Rotties home and witnessed first-hand just how amazing these pups really are.

Appropriate training and socialization cannot be stressed enough for this breed, as its protective, territorial, brave, and loyal natures can lead to a rambunctious, possibly aggressive pooch once it reaches adulthood if not kept in check.

However, these factors also prove to be some of the best pros for this breed, as they are what makes a Rottweiler truly a Rottweiler!

Alongside these traits, affection and being family-oriented are also huge bonuses, as you can get a guard dog and a lap dog in one! Who doesn’t want that?

After carefully considering each part of a Rottweiler’s general temperament and requirements, decide if this pup is one you can handle at home. If you can, well you’re in for a memorable and enriching life with a loving, humorous pooch!

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