an extremely intelligent and powerful animal...

Rottweilers are large, heavy dogs (up to 60kg) which you will either love or hate. Their reputation as aggressive guard dogs is well earned, but they have a soft side, being very devoted to their family and very obedient if properly trained. They are extremely intelligent making training easy, AND ESSENTIAL. Untrained Rottweilers are potentially dangerous and their sheer size and big teeth can cause harm to other animals and people if they are allowed to do so. Before choosing a Rottweiler, be clear that considerable obedience training is required and experienced handlers are preferable. A testament to their trainability is the fact that they are often used as Police dogs and service dogs.

These powerfully built dogs need lots of exercise - running or swimming every day is essential. They will happily run alongside you while you cycle and, when fully trained, love to be off lead in big, open spaces or cross country runs. If you cant commit to vigorous exercise don't get a Rottweiler! Bored, unstimulated Rottweilers can become very destructive and are a liability.

Their grooming requirements are few - their short hair doesn't shed much, so a quick brush once a week and some extra brushing during moulting season is all they need.

Follow the breeder's dietary guide. It is a good idea to feed them twice a day as they are prone to bloat. When choosing a puppy, check that its parents have been temperament tested and screened for hip dysplasia. This will reduce the chance of getting an unsuitable Rottweiler.

Finally, if you've decided on a Rottweiler, make sure your children are very involved with it right from the start so that it bonds with them quickly.

<ul> <li> Very large, powerful dog.</li> <li>High exercise requirements.</li> <li>Excellent guard dog.</li> <li>Very intelligent.</li> <li>Must be obedience trained.</li> <li>Can be aggressive.</li> </ul>