The Rottweiler originated in Germany and was called the "Butcher's Dog". It is a large
dog that was origionally bred to be a herding dog. As an extremely intelligent dog,
Rottweilers were also used as draught dogs (used to pull carts), companions, tracking
dogs, police/military dogs, and family guardians. Rottweilers were bred to be strong and
powerful. Breeders paid careful attention to the coat, color, and markings of the dogs.
The coat should be short with a predominately black color and well defined mahogany
markings. The Rottweiler is a calm, attentive and stoic dog with an air of nobility and a
very popular breed.
Rottweilers were used primarily as drover dogs, driving livestock to market. The advent of
the railroad replaced the Rottweiler, and due to their versitility, they now serve numerous
During the early 1900's, Rottweilers were used as military dogs, serving in both world
wars. They were also trained and used as police dogs.
In 1907 the first Rottweiler Club was established in Germany and called Deutscher
Rottweiler-Klub (DRK) or German Rottweiler Club. The Süddeutscher Rottweiler Klub
(SDRK) or South German Rottweiler Club followed later the same year. The SDRK
became the International Friends of Rottweilers (IFR) which is still in existance today. The
origional DRK had approximately 500 Rottweilers registered, while the SDRK registered
over 3000 Rottweilers. The DRK and SDRK differed in their vision and breeding
requirements for the dogs that were registered. Their differences mostly dealt with the
size and undercoat of the dogs registered . The goals of the DRK were to produce
working dogs with no emphasis on the structure of the Rottweiler. While the SDRK, which
later became the International Rottweiler Klub (IRK) wanted their dogs to win in the show
ring. These two clubs eventually merged and became the Allgemeiner Deutcher
Rottweiler Klub (ADRK). The ADRK is the club that sets the standards for today's
Rottweiler both as a working dog and a winner in the show ring.
The internation standards set for the typical Rottweiler are that he/she is good natured,
calm, fond of children, obedient, and willing to please. The dog's appearance is strong,
natural and healthy, he/she is confident, alert, and attuned to the needs of the owner.
The popularity of the use of Rottweilers during WWI lead to an increased interest in the
breed. The American Kennel Club officially recognized the Rottweiler as a breed in 1935
and the first Rottweiler was shown in Britian at the Crufts Dog Show in 1936. The first
Rottweiler registry started in the 1960's and by the 1990's was on of the most popular and
registered breed with the AKC.
History of the Rottweiler