Earning a Rotties Respect
Consistency in training is important with all dogs, but with the Rottweiler its a must. This is a kind and loving dog, sure, but its also willful. Some people say Rottweilers are stubborn, but I don’t, Cingota says. What’s the difference between stubborn and willful? A stubborn dog is one whose attitude is: You can’t make me do that, Cingota says. A willful dogs attitude is: Show me why I need to do this. For that reason, the Rottweiler needs an owner who has real leadership qualities, such as firmness and fairness, who can earn the dogs respect.
Earning a Rottweilers respect involves setting boundaries and teaching consequences, says Laura Noll of Jamul, California, who’s trained and earned titles on many Rottweilers. From day one, you need to show your Rottweiler that you’re in charge. That never means hitting the dog, but it does mean providing structure as well as consequences for inappropriate behavior. You must also understand consequences, Noll says.
You have to look into your crystal ball and say, Okay, it was cute when the dog was 8 weeks old, but its not cute when its 8 months or 8 years and 100 pounds. You have to look down the life road of this dog and get some vision, some outside scope, Noll says.
When you raise a child and he never learns consequences, he never learns right from wrong, and that child ends up being a bully, a hoodlum or a spoiled brat, Noll explains. The same is true for a dog. If you don’t give it structure and consequences for bad behavior, and that sort of thing, you’re going to end up with a thug. Rottweilers in this society cannot afford to become thugs, because that’s how we get breed-specific legislation and your Rottweiler becomes banned from your community.