Lifespan of a Doberman Pinscher

Dobermans, commonly known as Doberman pinschers, are a breed of loyal and intelligent dogs. They are first developed in Germany and are specially bred to work as guard dogs. There are many characteristics for which Dobermans are famous, and a few of them are fearlessness, loyalty, and obedience. In recent years, there has been a rise in Dobermans’ popularity as a fantastic domestic pet because of their undivided dedication and commitment to defending and keeping the family secure.

If you are planning to add a Doberman to your family or already have one, you must be wondering what the lifespan of a Doberman pinscher is? Don’t worry. You are in the right place; here, we will discuss in detail about the lifespan of a Doberman, common health issues that affect a Doberman’s lifespan, and how to extend the life of your Doberman?

How Long Do Dobermans Live?

Doberman pinschers are large dogs with shorter life spans as compared to other small dogs. Dobermans can live up to many years; however, an average lifespan of a Doberman is 10 to 12 years. The average lifespan of a Doberman can be increased if they are taken care of properly. To understand it better, let’s discuss the different stages of a Doberman’s life.


At birth, a Doberman puppy weighs around 10 to 20 oz. Like other puppies, Dobie puppies are also born with closed eyes and ears and rely entirely on their mother to survive. And if they are not around their mother, they are required to be nursed every 2 hours.


This period occurs when the Doberman is between the age of 6 to 18 months. They will now have permanent teeth and eat two meals daily. A few dogs also eat snacks in between. During this period, you need to consider neutering your puppy and do their immunization.

It is the perfect time to train your Dobie. A professionally trained Dobermans will reach its potential to defend you with honor. The early you will begin their training, the better it is.


This period occurs between the age of 3 to 8 years. Dobermans are a highly energetic dog breed and require a lot of physical activities to function properly. Mental stimulation is essential for Dobermans. If they start to feel bored, they act out, chew or tear off things. Hence it is necessary to provide them with adequate physical activity. You can also enroll them in obedience training classes or agility classes.


When Dobermans are seven years old, they are considered senior dogs. There are chances that after reaching this stage, they may begin to slow down and suffer from various diseases such as arthritis and other bone or joint-related issues.

At this stage, they may not be as active as they previously were. Therefore, it is essential to keep your Dobie healthy. You should also monitor that they should not gain unhealthy weight.

Why do Dobermans have a short lifespan?

There are several health reasons why Dobermans seem to die earlier than other dogs. A few reasons are:

  • Dobermans are impressively large breed dogs, and it is well known that the larger a breed is, the shorter its lifespan they have.
  • In addition to their size, this dog breed is also prone to different diseases. And this is the vital reason that Dobermans have a short lifespan.

Common Health Issues That Affect the Doberman’s Lifespan

There are some types of common disorders in Dobermans, such as:

  • Von Willebrand Disease- This disease is considered to be one of the scariest disorders that your Doberman can have. This is a genetic blood clotting disorder. It happens due to the lack of protein that is required to help the platelets stick to each other to form clots to close broken vessels. Besides difficulty with clotting blood after a cut or any other type of injury, the Dobie may continuously bleed from their nose or mouth. Genetic tests are available to determine if a specific dog has this disorder and if you consider that your dog may have this disease, you should do the screening.
  • Copper Hepatopathy– Dobies are prone to liver diseases; copper hepatopathy is a serious health condition. It is caused by an abnormal accumulation of copper in the animal’s liver and can result in progressive damage and scarring of the liver.
  • Glomerulonephropathy- Glomerulonephropathy is another kind of disease that is commonly visible among Dobermans. This is a type of disease that slowly harm the kidneys. If Dobie suffers from this disease and doesn’t get timely treatment, this can lead to kidney failure.
  • Chronic active Hepatitis- It is a progressive disease that causes liver infection and eventually severely damages it. According to studies, the Dobermans who suffer from this type of disease can live up to 87 days. The prognosis with early diagnosis and appropriate therapy is much better.
  • Wobbler Syndrome– It is a neck disease seen in larger and giant breeds of dogs. Dogs suffering from these diseases experience compression of the spinal cord and the spinal nerve roots, resulting in nervous system deficits and neck pain.
  • Bloat- Some Doberman’s will have a problem with a build-up of gas & fluids in the stomach, and it is commonly known as bloat
  • Dilated Cardiomyopathy– It is a form of heart disease that causes the dog’s heart to enlarge. Which resulted in difficulty in pumping blood throughout the body. This is a very common type of disease and is more visible in larger dog breeds.
  • Prostate disease– Dobermans are more prone to prostate disease than other dogs. Prostate diseases include bacterial infections, cancers, tumors, cysts, or any other cell-related problems
  • Hip Dysplasia- It is a malformation of the hip socket causing problems in walking, lameness, or arthritis of joints. Dobermans do suffer from this type of disease. However, they are not as much affected by it as many other large breed dogs.

How to know if your puppy is suffering from any diseases or is dying?

If you have a Doberman at your home or planning to get one, then you need to know all the signs that indicate that your Doberman is suffering from any diseases or is dying. Familiarising yourself with all these signs will help you to be emotionally prepared to deal with this issue. And if you Dobie is suffering from any curable diseases, then knowing their health condition and its cure will assist you in taking prompt actions. A few of them are given below.

  • Lethargy- Whenever your Doberman suffers from any disease, they will be unwilling to participate in any activities. If your Dobie is dying, you will notice that they will sleep more. In this case, you can provide them with a lush blanket to make their sleep more comfortable.
  • Loss of Appetite- With disease, the Dobermans will suffer from loss of appetite, which will gradually lead to weight loss. To help them, you can provide them smaller meals or only feed them when your Dobie wants to eat.
  • Incontinence- This sign is commonly visible in older dogs; they lose control over their bladder and bowel system. To prevent this, you can use special doggie diapers.
  • Low body temperature- The body temperature of a dying Doberman will become abnormally low. And if you are witnessing this kind of sign, try to make the environment of your house warm.

How to Extend the Life of Your Doberman

Undoubtedly, Dobermans are large breed dogs with a short lifespan, but you can increase their lifespan for an extended period by taking proper care. Here we have given a list of actions that you can take to make your Doberman healthy and increase their longevity.

Healthy diet

Providing them quality and healthy diet is critical for expanding Doberman’s life expectancy. You can add real meats such as chicken and beef to your Dobie’s diet, not animal byproducts. Foods with high-fat content, grains, and fillers don’t provide any nutritional content and only promote obesity. Hence it is highly essential to provide them with good food. Carbohydrates and healthy fats boost energy, and the ideal meal for a Dobie should contain a significant amount of carbs. 

Dietary supplements

It is advisable to provide dietary supplements to your Dobie. These are effective ways to maintain Doberman’s shiny coat. Vitamins and minerals also help boost a Dobie’s immune system and should form a considerable part of this canine’s meals.


Along with healthy, it is also essential to provide them with adequate exercise. Dobermans are highly energetic dogs and need a lot of exercises to stay fit and alert. It is also necessary to increase their longevity. Daily morning or evening walks and outings to a dog park are perfect options. It allows your Dobermans to release an abundance of pent-up energy and promote a healthy lifestyle. It is recommended to engage your adult Dobermans in 2 hours of exercise. 

Vet visit

A regular vet visit is also essential; it can provide you with all the information you need about your Dobie. If your Dobie suffers from any deficiency, then after the consultation, you can also add supplements and vitamins to help keep your dog healthy.

Bottom Line

Dobermans are larger dog breeds and have a shorter lifespan, but they are not an unhealthy breed. If you take proper care of your Dobie, they can live more than their average lifespan. And if your Doberman is already suffering from diseases, then you should be aware of the signs and work accordingly.


Do Dobermans have short lifespans?

Compared to other smaller dog breeds, Dobermans have a shorter lifespan. However, the average lifespan of a Doberman is 10 to 13 years.

Are Dobermans generally healthy?

Yes, Dobermans are healthy dogs.

Are our Dobermans prone to cancer?

Dobermans are among the top 5 dog breeds which are prone to cancer. Dobermans predominantly suffer from prostate cancer.

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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