American vs. European Doberman

There are two types of Doberman, you have seen in the world. One bred by Americans (recognised by the American Kennel Club) and the other bred by the Europeans (recognised by the European Kennel Club). Both essentially look the same to a laymen eye if you are not aware of the differences between the two..

But if you once know the differences, then you can easily spot them apart.

How to Spot the Difference


American Dobermans are a little short and skinny compared to the muscular and taller European Doberman.

Color Markings

American Doberman have Rust or light brown markings while their European brothers have Tan or dark brown markings.


The American Doberman has a thin neck with a little slope whereas the European Doberman has a thick neck and no slope.

Americans still like to call their version “Doberman Pinscher”, while Europeans call theirs “Doberman”.

Tabular Representation of the Differences:

  American Doberman European Doberman
Colors Available Black, Red, Blue, Fawn (Isabella) Black, Red
Height 26-28 in (male), 24-26 in (female) 27-28 in (male), 25-27 in (female)
Weight 34-45 kgs (male), 27-36 kgs (female) 36-47 kgs (male), 29-38 kgs (female)
Temperament Intelligent, Loving, Owner friendly emotions, Ideal family or show dog Intelligent, Loving, Confident, ideal working dog
Overall build Longer thin refined body of a show dog, thinner bone structure Thicker and muscular body of working dog, thicker bone structure
Head Thinner wedge like head with thin muzzle and jaw structure Broader head with thick muzzle and jaw structure
Eyes Light brown Dark Brown
Neck Longer and thinner, rising sharply from the shoulder Shorter and thicker, less rise from the shoulder
Chest Small and narrow Large and broad
Legs Thinner and elegant Thicker and muscular
Feet Smaller and refined Larger and compact
Assertive No Yes
Protective Yes, but a little less Yes, a bit more
Daily Agility Normal with a little less exercise requirement High stamina driven exercise requirements
Physical Correction More sensitive Less sensitive
Sees owner as More of big brother As an Authoritative figure
Reaction to the Unknown Might need a little guidance and assurance Confident
Family in Danger situation Barking with physical attack, might occasionally retreat Barking with physical attack, rarely retreats

Which is better?

  • Well, neither is better than the other. Both have been breed for completely different purposes.
  • It thus depends on the type of dog you want for yourself to make the choice of the better dog between the European and American variant of the Doberman.
  • Just to recap, the American Doberman is more of a show dog and is an ideal family pet with average need of daily activity and elegant looks.
  • Whereas, the European Doberman is the ideal working dog be it on a farm or for guard purposes. It is a large muscular doc with high energy levels and needs an active lifestyle.

See Also: Doberman vs. Miniature Pinscher: What’s the Difference?

A Third Varient

There’s also one another type of Doberman which you probably might never see. But you can get duped in its name. It’s the Warlock or King’s Doberman. This refers to the Doberman that was made by Louis Doberman, himself.

But he took that secret to his grave. So, unless he plans to visit Earth; that variant’s formula isn’t seeing the light of the day.

So that’s all for today, folks.

Hope you enjoy the article and are rich with the information and easily able to spot which Doberman is in front of you.

Jason Morgan

Jason Morgan

I'm Jason Morgan, founder and author at I just love Dobermans - they're the best dogs in the world! I got my first Doberman, Max, when I was just a pup myself. Max was my loyal friend and protector for over ten years. Since then, I've been working hard to learn everything I can about these amazing dogs. I started DobermanWiki as a place to share all that knowledge with other Doberman enthusiasts like me. My goal is to help every Doberman owner have the best possible relationship with their dog. I'm always happy to chat with other Doberman owners, so feel free to reach out anytime!

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