Breed Standards (American)
The ideal Rottweiler is a medium large, robust and powerful dog, black with clearly
markings. His compact and substantial build denotes great strength, agility and endurance.
are characteristically more massive throughout with larger frame and heavier bone than
Bitches are distinctly feminine, but without weakness of substance or structure.
Size, Proportion, Substance:
Dogs-24 inches to 27 inches. Bitches-22 inches to 25 inches, with preferred size being
each sex. Correct proportion is of primary importance, as long as size is within the
range. The length of body, from prosternum to the rearmost projection of the rump, is
longer than the height of the dog at the withers, the most desirable proportion of the
length being 9 to 10. The Rottweiler is neither coarse nor shelly. Depth of chest is
fifty percent (50%) of the height of the dog. His bone and muscle mass must be sufficient
balance his frame, giving a compact and very powerful appearance.
Serious Faults: Lack of proportion, undersized, oversized, reversal of sex characteristics
dogs, doggy bitches).
Of medium length, broad between the ears; forehead line seen in profile is moderately
zygomatic arch and stop well developed with strong broad upper and lower jaws. The desired
of backskull to muzzle is 3 to 2. Forehead is preferred dry, however some wrinkling may
when dog is alert.
Expression is noble, alert, and self-assured. Eyes of medium size, almond shaped with well
lids, moderately deep-set, neither protruding nor receding. The desired color is a uniform
Serious Faults: Yellow (bird of prey) eyes, eyes of different color or size, hairless eye
Disqualification: Entropion. Ectropion.
Ears of medium size, pendant, triangular in shape; when carried alertly the ears are level
top of the skull and appear to broaden it. Ears are to be set well apart, hanging forward
inner edge lying tightly against the head and terminating at approximately mid-cheek.
Serious Faults: Improper carriage (creased, folded or held away from cheek/head).
Muzzle: Bridge is straight, broad at base with slight tapering towards tip. The end of the
is broad with well developed chin. Nose is broad rather than round and always black.
Lips: Always black; corners closed; inner mouth pigment is preferred dark.
Serious Faults: Total lack of mouth pigment (pink mouth).
Bite and Dentition: Teeth 42 in number (20 upper, 22 lower), strong, correctly placed,
meeting in a
scissors bite, lower incisors touching inside of upper incisors.
Serious Faults: Level bite; any missing tooth.
Disqualifications: Overshot, undershot (when incisors do not touch or mesh); wry mouth;
more missing teeth.
Neck, Topline, Body:
Neck: Powerful, well muscled, moderately long, slightly arched and without loose skin.
Topline: The back is firm and level, extending in a straight line from behind the withers
croup. The back remains horizontal to the ground while the dog is moving or standing.
Body: The chest is roomy, broad and deep, reaching to elbow, with well pronounced
well sprung, oval ribs. Back is straight and strong. Loin is short, deep and well muscled.
is broad, of medium length and only slightly sloping. Underline of a mature Rottweiler has
tuck-up. Males must have two normal testicles properly descended into the scrotum.
Disqualification: Unilateral cryptorchid or cryptorchid males.
Tail: Tail docked short, close to body, leaving one or two tail vertebrae. The set of the
tail is more
important than length. Properly set, it gives an impression of elongation of topline;
above horizontal when the dog is excited or moving.
Shoulder blade is long and well laid back. Upper arm equal in length to shoulder blade,
elbows are well under body. Distance from withers to elbow and elbow to ground is equal.
are strongly developed with straight, heavy bone, not set close together. Pasterns are
springy and almost perpendicular to the ground. Feet are round, compact with well arched
turning neither in nor out. Pads are thick and hard. Nails short, strong and black.
Angulation of hindquarters balances that of forequarters. Upper thigh is fairly long, very
and well muscled. Stifle joint is well turned. Lower thigh is long, broad and powerful,
extensive muscling leading into a strong hock joint. Rear pasterns are nearly
perpendicular to the
ground. Viewed from the rear, hind legs are straight, strong and wide enough apart to fit
properly built body. Feet are somewhat longer than the front feet, turning neither in nor
equally compact with well arched toes. Pads are thick and hard. Nails short, strong, and
Dewclaws must be removed.
Outer coat is straight, coarse, dense, of medium length and lying flat. Undercoat should
on neck and thighs, but the amount is influenced by climatic conditions. Undercoat should
show through outer coat. The coat is shortest on head, ears and legs, longest on
Rottweiler is to be exhibited in the natural condition with no trimming.
Fault: Wavy coat.
Serious Faults: Open, excessively short, or curly coat; total lack of undercoat; any
alters the length of the natural coat.
Disqualification: Long coat.
Always black with rust to mahogany markings. The demarcation between black and rust is to
clearly defined. The markings should be located as follows: a spot over each eye; on
cheeks; as a
strip around each side of muzzle, but not on the bridge of the nose; on throat; triangular
both sides of prosternum; on forelegs from carpus downward to the toes; on inside of rear
showing down the front of the stifle and broadening out to front of rear legs from hock to
not completely eliminating black from rear of pasterns; under tail; black penciling on
undercoat is gray, tan, or black. Quantity and location of rust markings is important and
not exceed ten percent of body color.
Serious Faults: Straw-colored, excessive, insufficient or sooty markings; rust marking
described above; white marking any place on dog (a few rust or white hairs do not
Disqualifications: Any base color other than black; absence of all markings.
The Rottweiler is a trotter. His movement should be balanced, harmonious, sure, powerful
unhindered, with strong forereach and a powerful rear drive. The motion is effortless,
ground-covering. Front and rear legs are thrown neither in nor out, as the imprint of hind
should touch that of forefeet. In a trot the forequarters and hindquarters are mutually
while the back remains level, firm and relatively motionless. As speed increases the legs
converge under body towards a center line.
The Rottweiler is basically a calm, confident and courageous dog with a self-assured
does not lend itself to immediate and indiscriminate friendships. A Rottweiler is
responds quietly and with a wait-and-see attitude to influences in his environment. He has
inherent desire to protect home and family, and is an intelligent dog of extreme hardness
adaptability with a strong willingness to work, making him especially suited as a
guardian and general all-purpose dog. The behavior of the Rottweiler in the show ring
controlled, willing and adaptable, trained to submit to examination of mouth, testicles,
aloof or reserved dog should not be penalized, as this reflects the accepted character of
An aggressive or belligerent attitude towards other dogs should not be faulted. A judge
excuse from the ring any shy Rottweiler. A dog shall be judged fundamentally shy if,
stand for examination, it shrinks away from the judge. A dog that in the opinion of the
menaces or threatens him/her, or exhibits any sign that it may not be safely approached or
by the judge in the normal manner, shall be excused from the ring. A dog that in the
opinion of the
judge attacks any person in the ring shall be disqualified.
Faults: The foregoing is a description of the ideal Rottweiler. Any structural fault that
from the above described working dog must be penalized to the extent of the deviation.
Entropion, ectropion. Overshot, undershot (when incisors do not touch or mesh); wry mouth;
or more missing teeth. Unilateral cryptorchid or cryptorchid males. Long coat. Any base
other than black; absence of all markings. A dog that in the opinion of the judge attacks
person in the ring.