The Rottweiler was developed from the dogs used by the Roman legions to herd and guard the cattle brought
by them to feed their legions. The butchers of Rottweil, Germany, developed the dogs to drive cattle to market and to protect
their money bags which were tied around the dogs' necks. It was an arduous task to drive the cattle and a strong dog with
staying power, full of self will and physical strength was needed. In the beginning of the 20th century these dogs were found
particularly well suited as a police dog, a function they still fulfill especially in Europe.
The ideal Rottweiler is an above medium-sized, robust, and powerful dog, black with clearly defined rich
tan markings. His compact build denotes great strength, agility, and endurance. Males are characteristically larger, heavier
boned and more masculine in appearance.
The Rottweiler should possess
a fearless expression with a self-assured aloofness that does not lend itself to immediate and indiscriminate friendships.
He has a strong willingness to work. In examining a Rottweiler, one should bear in mind that this dog reacts with alertness
to his master and his surroundings, and in performing his function in life, the Rottweiler is not expected to submit to excessive
handling by strangers. However, the judge shall dismiss from the ring any shy or vicious Rottweiler. A dog shall be judged
fundamentally shy if, refusing to stand for examination it shrinks away from the judge; If it fears an unexpected approach
from the rear; if it shies at sudden or unusual noises to a marked degree. A dog that attacks or attempts to attack, without
provocation, either the judge, or its handler is definitely vicious. An aggressive or belligerent attitude towards other dogs
shall not be deemed viciousness.
Dogs 24 - 27 in. (60 -68 cm). Bitches 22
- 25 in. (55-63 cm).
Proportion should always be considered rather than height alone. The length of the body, from
the breastbone (sternum) to the rear of edge of the pelvis (ischium) is slightly longer than the height of the dog at the
withers, the most desirable proportion being as 10 to 9. Depth of the chest should be fifty per cent of the height.
Coat and Colour:
Outer coat is straight, coarse, dense, medium length, lying flat. Undercoat must
be present on neck and thighs. The Rottweiler should be exhibited in a natural condition without trimming, except to remove
whiskers, if desired. The colour is always black with rich tan or mahogany markings. The borderline between the black and
the colour should be clearly defined. The markings should be located as follows: a spot over each eye; on cheeks; as a strip
around each side of the muzzle, but not on the bridge of the nose; on throat; a proportionate triangular mark on either side
of the breastbone not to exceed 25 per cent of the forechest; on forelegs from carpus downward to toes; on inside of the rear
legs showing down the front of the stifle and broadening out to front of rear legs from hock to toes but not eliminating the
black from the back of the legs; under tail. Black penciling markings of the toes. The undercoat is gray or black. Quantity
and location of markings are important. Insufficient or excessive markings should be penalized.
medium length, broad between the ears; forehead line seen in profile is moderately arched. The length of the muzzle should
not exceed the distance between the stop and the occiput. The skull is preferred dry; however, some wrinkling may occur when
the dog is alert. The bridge of the muzzle is straight. The muzzle is broad at the base with slight tapering towards the tip
but not snipey. The nose is broad rather than round, with black nostrils. The lips are always black with the corners tightly
closed. The flews should not be to pronounced. The inner mouth pigment is dark. A pink mouth is to be penalized. The teeth
are 42 in number (20 upper and 22 lower). They are strong and should be correctly placed meeting in a scissors bite- lower
incisors touching inside the upper incisors. Eyes should be of medium size, moderately deep set, almond shaped with well-fitting
lids. The iris should be of uniform colour, from medium to dark brown, the darker shade always preferred. Ears should be pendant,
proportionately small, triangular in shape, set well apart and placed on the skull so as to make it appear broader when the
dog is alert. The ear should terminate at approximately mid-cheek level. When correctly held, the inner edge will lie tightly
against the cheek.
Powerful, well muscled, moderately long with slight arch
and without loose skin.
The shoulder blade should be long and well
laid back at a 45-degree angle. The elbows are tight and under the body. The distance from the withers to the elbow and the
elbow to the ground is equal. The legs are strongly developed with straight, heavy bone. They are not set close together.
The pasterns are strong, springy and almost perpendicular to the ground. Feet are round, compact with well arched toes, turning
neither in nor out. Pads are thick and hard. Nails are short, strong and black. Dewclaws may be removed.
The topline is firm and level, extending in a straight line from the withers to the croup. The
brisket should be deep, reaching to the elbow. The ribs are well sprung. The loins short, deep, and well muscled. The flank
should not be tucked up. The croup is broad, of medium length and slightly sloping.
angulation of the hindquarters balances that of the forequarters. The slope of the pelvis from the horizontal is between 20-30
degrees. The bone of the upper thigh is fairly long and the thigh is broad and well muscled. The stifle joint is moderately
angulated. The lower thigh is long, powerfully muscled leading to a strong hock joint. The metatarsus is perpendicular to
the ground. Viewed from the rear, the hind legs are straight and perpendicular to the ground. The feet are somewhat longer
than the front feet, with well arched toes turning neither in nor out. Dewclaws must be removed.
tail is normally carried in a horizontal position giving the appearance of an elongated topline. It is carried above the horizontal
when the dog is excited. The tail is normally docked short close to the body, if left in natural condition, tail is level
in extension of the topline; at ease may be hanging. A kinked tail or ring tail is undesirable. The set of the tail is more
important than length.
The Rottweiler is a trotter; the motion is harmonious,
sure, powerful and unhindered, with a strong fore-reach and a powerful rear drive. Front and rear legs are not thrown either
in or out, as the imprint of the hind feet should touch that of the forefeet. In a trot, the forequarters and hindquarters
are mutually coordinated while the back remains firm. As speed increases the legs will converge under the body towards the
The foregoing is a description of the ideal Rottweiler. Any
structural fault that detracts from the ideal must be penalized to the extent of the deviation. Included as faults are: pink
mouth, wavy coat, insufficient markings, undercoat showing through outercoat. Faults considered serious are: lack of proportion,
undersize, oversize, level bite, yellow eyes, eyes not of same colour, eyes unequal in size or shape, hairless eyelids, excessively
short coat, curly or open coat, lack of undercoat, white markings any place on dog (a few white hairs do not constitute a
marking), excessive markings, light-coloured markings.
undershot or wry bite, any missing tooth, long coat, any base colour other than black, total absence of markings.