Last minute advice and some much needed reassurance

10 replies [Last post]
Joined: 2014-05-24

Hello! I am getting my 7th week old  Doberman puppy in 2 days and I feel like after 10 months of waiting,researching and going through the whole process of welcoming a Doberman into my home I have come to the realization that I am in a definite state of panic. This is probably why I woke up at 1am as a last ditch effort for some nice words of advice and support. Long story short, the closer I get to picking up my puppy, the more I feel like every thought I have had about taking care of him has been racing through my mind, everything from vets and training all the way down to the ingredients in the dog food. A lot of my friends and family have started every conversation as " you do know it's like taking care of a baby right?? You will have absolutely no free time anymore" or "you're going to crate train him?? That's no life for a dog!", or even "I don't like dogs and why you are getting a Doberman is beyond me, good luck training the shiz out of that thing." (Along with a big ol' crusty look on their face of course). (The most ironic part about my friends and family is NONE of them have ever really raised a dog or majority, never had a dog.)  The more I hear these things the more I start to doubt myself and my ability to successfully train and look after this new Doberman puppy. Bottom line, I'm kinda freaking out a little bit and I'm a little scared that I will ruin the little guy somehow, and everyone will just give me that look of "well, we told you so". I know it will be hard, and I know it won't be easy but I know it will be worth it (if only I could convince everyone that).

Any last minute advice? From anyone? I would love anything. Thank you.

Kim's picture
Joined: 2012-02-05


You'll be fine! Yes, babies are more work. Yes, crate training is good for them - easier to housebreak, and your pup will view his crate as a haven and cozy place to sleep. (Maybe after a little bit - he'll have to get used to it!)

It sounds like you've done plenty of homework about your pup. And it sounds like you're letting people who know nothing about Dobermans tell you how to raise him. You'll be ok!  Everyone here has lots of helpful advice, and we all LOVE Dobermans! There are no stupid questions here, and folks are very generous with their advice.

When I got my first Dobe pup, my mother was adamantly against it - just because he was a Doberman. 3 weeks later, she was taking his picture in to work with her, showing it to her co-workers, and telling them it was her new grandchild.  LOL!

(Pictures. We need pictures.) 

Joined: 2014-05-24

Thank you! I'm glad I can come here for questions and advice I'm in the same boat right now, except my entire family is against it :/ I have been trying to convince them and tell them all the great things about dobermans, but it seems like my effort has been in vain.  But it seems like a lot of them are worried because they are unsure of how the new puppy will behave with young kids. Is there anything I can do to ease their fears/ training tips for the puppy to help with young kids?

Lady Kate's picture
Joined: 2009-10-28

Pet Profiles

The only suggestion I would make is to wait another week or so... Eight weeks is the usual tme reputable breeders will allow their darlings to leave the pack as they need that last little bit of time to finish the socialization and learn something about biting ( which is a whole other subject you're about to learn)

I'm sure you have your reasons for wanting to take your baby boy home sooner than 8 weeks.. just be prepared for a little more stress a little more confusion and by all means.. come back often for questions and hopefully answers.

Geezz.. now I sound like a parade rainer on-er... would delete the above.. but someone else is sure to write it..

Good luck!!

Joined: 2012-10-28

Pet Profiles


 A puppy that can't win humans over does not exist.....

 A squirmy, soft, silky black and tan dobie puppy is so irresistable.....

Hope fully these nay sayers around you will be won over and start lining up to watch him if you need some help! Do you live with these folks?

Just remember they (puppies) need alot of patience and understanding their limits, like how many times they need to pee and poo. Remember of course that dobies are very smart and intuitive. Just don't expect miracles, go slowly and read alot.

Also it is a time for big adjustments for him and for you. When we got Bella, we did not leave her (for a dinner out) for 3 months, but during that time we gradually built up time away nearby on the property until we knew it would be ok.

Most people don't work at home and they are successful dog owners, it takes resources such as puppy visitors. He will be sleeping alot when you are not looking, believe it or not! 

a few words more... careful of his neck, feed the best food you can afford, we trained Bella not to bite by pressing our thumb or fingernail into her toungue gently when she was trying to bite us, make sure he starts learning what is his and what is not right away, i say 'mine' in a deep voice, rubber toys endure, stuffies won't last...

good luck

 you can do it

 they are babies / children with fur, its your animal family

from Bella and Julia

Joined: 2014-05-24

Thank you for all the advice :) I really wish I could move the pick up date, I already asked to move it from 6 weeks to 7 weeks and she said she couldn't let me switch again sadly. I will try to manage the biting and the socialization. I heard that exposing them would be the best that way they grow up knowing how soft to be with kids and others, but of course being mindful like you guys said would be best. Thank you for all the advice everybody! :) I am starting to regain some footing and reassurance.

Oz Dobe's picture
Joined: 2014-03-24

You'll be fine. The fact that you've joined this forum PRIOR to picking up your pup tells us you are interested in the welfare of this pup.

Once you get your beautiful pup, you will quickly realize how misunderstood this breed of dog is. Every day, I'm amazed by the preconceptions people have of a dog that they have never even seen before. I get this all the time -"A dobe, you dont see them around much these days". And yet everyone will freak out if you tell them you have one or are getting one.

The best part is that you are taking a step toward educating the public about how great these guys are. The satisfaction that comes with seeing people go from fearing these dogs when they enter a dog park to loving them by the time they leave is so great. And you can be part of that.

Just remember that puppy hood is very important in terms of socialization and learning. It's nothing to stress about. Just try to give the puppy as much exposure to people and other dogs as you safely can, keeping in mind that keeping him safe before his vaccinations is very important. Take him out in the car with you to let him sniff the neighbourhood and see the sights. Put him on a leash in the back yard and teach him to loose leash walk. If you follow the advice here and elsewhere on raising a pup positively, you really cant go wrong. Storm and I started from behind because an illness she had delayed her vaccinations, which delayed her socialization, but we've put in the work and training and she's a happy healthy playful 14mo and a joy to own.

But most of all. HAVE FUN with your pup. He'll learn that much faster and his temperament will be so much the better if you guys make training fun. Training with games is a great way to start.

If you haven't checked it out already, there is a great site which focuses very much on positive puppy training called Dog Star Daily run by Dr Ian Dunbar and his family. It has lots of great info and and a couple of free ebooks - Before you get your puppy, and After you get your puppy. Do yourself a favor and check these out.

I look forward to your future posts about your new pup very soon.


talisin's picture
Joined: 2011-02-25

Welcome!!! in my opinion there should be no reason that the person with the puppy should not allow you to leave the puppy with mom for another week or so, that seems very odd to me.....she should have insisted that the puppies stay not penalize you for wanting him to stay.....raised eyebrow here.....

With all the great advice already given my input is to begin training with fun things and fun tone of voice and for very short spurts their attention span is super short this little; so keep it fun and happy with no issues of "not doing" something correctly but all the happy happy you can muster for the good correct things that ARE done....when healthy and vaccines are at maximum load and you can socialize I would go to obedience class and make that as fun as possible, and don't just do the puppy class and quit, but stay in obedience and make it your career with your dog, earn all the titles and certificates it will help with bonding and trust and staying crate train, I think crates are next best thing to chocolate or better.....they give your dog a safe place to go to, it gives you peace of mind in case of an emergency where your dog HAS to be crated and you sure don't want to START when it's an emergency, plus going to the vet overnight is easier cause the vet has crates/cages they have to stay in so if they are already familiar with them it will be less stressful than leaving a dog that has no idea why he is being contained and panics.....and it's great in case you have lots of company and you want to secure your dog for his own safety from little kids or those that don't like dogs....and alot of times illness requires being calm and crated for days sometimes weeks so it's best to start now while it's a fun thing and secure thing....establish a routine but not too set in stone for those times that you are running late or it just can't be done on time.....but within reason establish a routine....

My dogs know that they will get lunch sometime before "daddy" gets home but no set time, so they are never an issue with the begging for food from me, my husband on the other hand feeds at EXACTLY 6pm  and every hour after that for our chihuahua and they know when that clock is on that hour to feed them and they will bark and paw at's the most aggravating thing.....but with me they just don't know, they only know they have food from me when I call them to it....but it's lunch usually within a 2 hour timeframe today they may eat at noon and tomorrow it might be closer to 2pm depends on my errands and workload that day.....

I would teach manners with doors, not jumping up on people etc. as his attention span gets better and his ability to learn and retain increases....all these "manners" and obedience training will not only make for a very happy well rounded dog but will also show others that the doberman is a great dog and that you did know what you were could do things like agility, search/rescue type work, cart pulling, therapy for the elderly or children, all sorts of "work" for the dog, these dogs are working dogs and that means your dog will be happy with a "job" come up with something you both love to do.....and of course wait for any strenuous things till the growth plates are secure....check with your vet or one of the competent people here as to when that might be.....

that's my bit - I never had a doberman in my household for more than a month due to a tragic accident with me causing her to be rehomed, but I have had dogs all my life and trained my 7 year old rottie rescue lots of these things and always trained my collies, whippet, staffy mix, rottie mix, labs, shepherd, rhodesian ridgeback, and I am currently training my 9 year old rescued rottie who has been here almost two weeks and he is learning fast, so I feel a little of my experience of what makes a happy dog might help you guys out....

chris b.'s picture
Joined: 2011-01-20

Congrats on the new baby.  Yes you are going to have your hands full, but only for about the first 10 years if you're lucky.  As far as winning over friends and family,  When I got my 2, my late husbands reaction was "why would anyone want 2 of those big viscious dogs?"  He had never known a dode.  We were dating at the time.  After we got married and all moved in together, he fell in love with them.  He took them everywhere, I think he liked them better than he did me!  Give people time to get to know your baby, make sure he's well socialized and well behaved.  And remember, A tired dobe is a happy dobe.  Lots of exersize, lots of love and consistant training, you'll do great.  And, we want pictures!!!

Michael's picture
Joined: 2012-12-12

I've come to the conclusion that my neighbors are idiots.

They're afraid of dobermans.  I'll agree, dobermans look and sound scary.  But I've never met a mean one.  In fact, I met one in her yard the other day (owners were there), and she was very sweet.  She greeted me very nicely.

Dobermans are a working breed, and as such they are very easy to train.

I know it's easy to question yourself when everyone else around you is telling you you're nuts, but don't worry.  You'll show them how affectionate a doberman really is.

Enjoy the puppy years.  They can be quite comical.  Expect that things will get chewed.  Carpets will be peed on.  Food will be stolen.  It's not the end of the world.

Joined: 2014-05-24

Thank you for all the advice!!! :) I picked up my baby dobe today and so far so good. He fell asleep majority of the car ride home. I'll keep everyone posted. love him to death already.