27 July 2023

Let’s talk about Rottweilers: what are they?

  • Rottweilers, also known as Rotties, are a powerful and robust breed that originated in Germany.
  • They were originally bred for herding and guarding livestock.
  • Rottweilers have a long history as working dogs and their descendants were even used by the Roman army to guard their livestock during long marches.
  • These dogs have a strong and muscular build, with a distinctive black coat and markings that range from rich mahogany to a lighter tan.
  • They have a broad head and a confident expression.
  • On average, males can reach a height of 61-69 cm and females can reach a height of 56-63 cm. In terms of weight, males typically weigh between 50-60 kg, while females weigh around 35-48 kg.
  • The life expectancy of a Rottweiler is usually between 8 and 11 years.
Rottweiler  Exercise Needs 4/5 Grooming Ease 3/5 Trainability 4/5

What is the temperament of Rottweilers like?

  • Rottweilers are known for their loyalty and protective nature towards their family.
  • They are intelligent and confident dogs, which makes them excellent guard dogs.
  • While they are generally calm and composed, they can be reserved with strangers.
  • Early socialisation and training are important to ensure they grow up to be well-rounded dogs.
  • Rottweilers can be great family pets when raised with care and given proper training.
  • However, it's essential to establish clear boundaries.
Bailey, the Rottweiler

How much exercise do Rottweilers need?

  • Rottweilers are an active breed that requires a good amount of exercise to stay happy and healthy.
  • They should ideally receive at least 1.5 to 2 hours of exercise every day.
  • This can include activities such as brisk walks, jogging, playtime in a securely fenced area, and mentally stimulating games.
  • Rottweilers also enjoy participating in dog sports like obedience, tracking, and agility.
  • Regular exercise helps prevent boredom and ensures that they burn off their energy in a positive way.
  • Puppies have different exercise needs compared to adult Rottweilers.
  • While it's important to provide them with physical activity, it should be age-appropriate and not excessive.
  • For puppies, short periods of playtime and gentle walks are recommended to avoid putting too much strain on their developing joints and bones.
  • Your vet can advise on the exercise needs of your Rottie.
Emily, the Rottweiler

Do Rottweilers need a lot of grooming?

  • Rottweilers have a short and dense double coat that requires moderate grooming.
  • They are moderate shedders, so regular brushing with a firm bristle brush or a rubber grooming mitt will help remove loose hair and keep their coat looking its best.
  • They tend to shed more during seasonal changes, so more frequent brushing may be needed during those times.
  • Bathing them every 2-3 months is usually enough, unless they are dirty or your vet or groomer advises otherwise.
  • Like any dog, regular tooth brushing with a dog-specific toothpaste twice daily is ideal. If you can’t manage that often, just do it as often as you can.
Sasha, the Rottweiler

Are Rottweilers easy to train?

  • Rottweilers are highly intelligent and eager to please, which makes them generally easy to train.
  • They thrive when given consistent training sessions with positive reinforcement techniques such as treats, praise, and play.
  • Early socialisation is crucial for Rottweilers to ensure they grow up to be well-behaved and friendly around people and other animals.
  • However, due to their strength and protective instincts, it's important for owners to be consistent and firm, but not harsh.
Teddy, the Rottweiler

What do Rottweilers eat?

  • A balanced and high-quality dog food is recommended for Rottweilers.
  • The amount of food they need depends on factors such as their age, size, activity level, and metabolism.
  • As adults, most Rotties do well being fed twice daily.
  • As puppies, Rottweilers should be fed a specially formulated puppy food to support their growth and development.
  • They should eat 3-4 times daily until 6 months old when it can be reduced to twice daily.
  • Around the age of 12 to 18 months, they can transition to adult dog food.
  • It's important to monitor their weight and adjust the portion sizes accordingly to prevent obesity. Treats should be given in moderation to avoid overfeeding.
  • Your vet can advise on the dietary needs of your specific Rottie.

Are Rottweilers healthy?

Rottweilers, like any breed, can be prone to certain health issues. Some common health concerns in Rottweilers include:

Body Weight

  • Obesity - Abnormal or excessive fat accumulation leading to secondary health concerns

Bones and Joints

  • Cruciate Disease - when a cruciate ligament of the knee is either partially or fully torn leading to discomfort and lameness
  • Elbow Dysplasia - this condition is where there is an issue with how the bones fit together at the elbow joint
  • Hip Dysplasia - a condition where the thigh bone and pelvis do not sit together properly at the hip joint, which can lead to discomfort and arthritis
  • Osteochondritis Dissecans (OCD) - an inflammatory condition where cartilage detaches from the bone and can enter into the joint cavity and cause discomfort


  • Lymphoma - cancer of the lymphatic system of the body
  • Osteosarcoma - malignant bone cancer that tends to start in the long bones of the legs


  • Aortic Stenosis - a narrowing of the aortic valve of the heart
  • Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) - a disease of the heart muscle causing the heart ventricles to get larger, which can lead to heart failure


  • Hot Spots - red, inflamed, moist lesions of the skin, usually found on the head, neck, legs and hips

This list is by no means comprehensive, so if you have any concerns about the health of your Rottweiler, or if you want to discuss further if a Rottweiler is right for you, consult with your vet.

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Information on this page should never replace advice given by your veterinarian. Potential health issues presented are given as a guide only and are not meant to be comprehensive. If you ever have any concerns about your dog’s health, contact your local vet.

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