- The Doberman pinscher is a sleek, agile, and powerful dog, of mediumsize, with short glistening hair, rather long legs, and a long, lean head. One of the most popular and respected members of the canine family, it was bred by Louis Dobermann, for whom the breed is named. Dobermann lived in Apolda, Thuringia (a region of West Germany), where he was a night watchman and in the late 1800s, the keeper of the dog pound. He was also the tax collector and so had need for a dog that would protect him from the irate, negligent tax payers and the snarling guard dogs. Dobermann undertook the task of breeding a dog to handle his problems. He was admirably successful in a short period of time. The Doberman pinscher has the lightning reaction of terriers and the intelligence to serve as a guard dog for both the police and the military. It has also been used as a herder for livestock. The dog is generally black or rust in color, is a high jumper, and ranks next to the greyhound as a runner. Because it is extremely alert and fearless, it is used as a guard in commercial establishments.Some of the dogs used by Dobermann to shape the Dobie (as the dog was frequently called) included the pinscher (a smaller black and tan dog similar in appearance to the modern Doberman), Rottweilers, and Thuringian Shepherds. Other breeds that contributed their genes are black Greyhounds, Great Danes, Weimaraners, and German Shorthaired Pointers.Today's Doberman pinscher has lost the second "n" in Dobermann and has mellowed in fierceness to become a family member capable of displaying great gentleness and devotion to children. Pinscher is pseudo-German, perhaps derived from German Pinzgau, an Austrian district noted for its animal-breeding farms.
Dictionary of eponyms. Morton S. Freeman. 2013.