German Rottweiler vs American Rottweiler (Explained)

German Rottweiler Vs American. Photo of a German Rottweiler and an American Rottweiler.

Are you looking to adopt a Rottweiler, but you’re unsure whether to get a German Rottweiler VS American Rottweiler since you have no idea about their differences?

Then it’s about time you do, although you might feel a bit surprised that they don’t have as many differences as you’d expect!

All purebred Rottweilers is that they are and always will be German! To clarify, whether a Rottweiler is born in Germany or not, it remains of German descent.

For that reason, German Rottweilers and American Rottweilers only have very subtle differences, which would strictly include the state where they were born and having the German breed’s tail undocked while the American breed’s tail docked. 

Other differences are not as prominent and are unnoticeable to some extent, but if you’re persistent in knowing every detail of their differences, then keep reading!

How Can I Tell if a Rottweiler is German or American? 

Besides a Rottweiler’s certification to where it was born or its tail’s appearance, you can also tell if it’s a German or American breed through its other physical features.

German Rottweilers tend to have a more muscular built compared to the American breed; they are slightly taller than them as well.

Photo of a German Rottweiler

German Rottweiler Physical Aspects

  • Head: Wider and aggressive.
  • Eyes: Dark medium shining almond-shaped;
  • Ears: Triangular shape and set higher in the head;
  • Nose: Black and broad;
  • Neck: Muscular and somewhat lenghty;
  • Body: Muscular and broader than the American Rottweiler.
  • Tail: Normally not docked.
  • Coat: Straight short and dense,
  • Coat colors: Black and mahogany, black and rust, black and tan.

German Rottweiler Temperament

  • Amiable;
  • Easygoing;
  • Devoted;
  • Working dog;
  • Dutiful;
  • Compliant;
  • Brave.

Photo of an American Rottweiler

American Rottweiler Physical Aspects

  • Head: Smaller but still menacing;
  • Eyes: Dark medium shining almond-shaped;
  • Ears: Triangular shape and attentive;
  • Nose: Black and broad;
  • Neck: Muscular and somewhat lenghty;
  • Body: Slimmer but still broad;
  • Tail: Normally it is docked.
  • Coat: Straight short and dense;
  • Coat colors: Black and mahogany, black and rust, black and tan. Can also have shades of blue, red, or be all black.

American Rottweiler Temperament

  • Affectionate;
  • Devote to the family;
  • Gatekeeper;
  • Playfellow;
  • Self-awere;
  • Distanced;
  • Calm.

Top Dog Breeding Standards in Germany 

Apparently, Germany has set very firm standards to certify whether a Rottweiler is German or not.

As follows, the same breed that has been altered or was bred in another country would not count as a German Rottweiler. 

In Germany, Rottweiler breeders are not allowed to register puppies if their parents have failed to pass a breed suitability test, which evaluates whether a Rottweiler is entirely in accordance with the official breed standards. 

Lenient Dog Breeding in America 

In contrast, the United States permits puppies despite them having been produced by faulty Rottweilers. Breeders would then register and sell them as purebreds.

As a result, Rottweilers have come in numerous variations, yet the German breed is best recognized as an original and certified unfaulty Rottweiler. 

If you’re planning to get a Rottweiler, you might want to consider knowing whether or not its physical traits are “faults” which are a cause of disregarding the official breed standards. 

Breed problems you should Know before getting a Rottweiler

  • Skinnier legs and a less bulky-looking body built;
  • Perpetually wrinkled forehead;
  • Loose eyelids and rounded eyes;
  • A nose that is not black;
  • Light-colored gums and visible corners of the mouth;
  • Elongated muzzle and prominently thinner lower jaws;
  •  Flat chest area and non-straight back;
  • Wavy or sparse coat of hair;
  • Coat’s color markings are neither rust, mahogany nor in between.

If a Rottweiler you plan to keep doesn’t exhibit any of these physical features, it automatically certifies you that your dog-to-be obtains the official breed standards.

Although getting one from a trusted and licensed Rottweiler breeder can also be a way for you to ensure your Rottweiler’s authenticity, remember that being mindful of its overall characteristics is equally important! 

Rottweiler approved breed standards: 

  • Relatively broad head between the ears;
  • Broad and black nose with large nostrils;
  • The muzzle is not too long, nor is it too short;
  • Black and tight lips;
  • Broad and strong looking jaws;
  • Medium-sized and dark-brown eyes;
  • A strong and fair-lengthed neck;
  • Roomy and broad chest;
  • Rich tan markings present on the cheeks, muzzle, throat, chest, legs, and eyebrows.

Ideal height and weight of Rottweilers

For adult male dogs: a height measurement (at withers) of 24-27 inches (61-68 cm) and weight measurement near 110 pounds (50kg)

For adult bitches: a height measurement (at withers) of 22-25 inches (56-63 cm) and weight measurement near to 93 pounds (42kg). 

What’s the Difference Between a German and an American Rottweiler’s Temperament? 

Because German and American Rottweilers are of the same dog breed, their temperament is not too dissimilar.

The only distinction they have is that a German breed is almost certain to carry a calm personality and a sharp mind because they are strictly bred to assist their human companions; they’re also selected to fill their usual role of being a guide dog, security dog, or simply, a family dog.

With that being said, Rottweilers, in general, make wonderful pets! They are loyal and protective to their owners and are highly trainable too. 

Social exposure is important 

Despite its bad reputation of being aggressive and dangerous, it doesn’t apply to most dogs and would often only apply to Rottweilers that weren’t properly taken care of by their owners.

A Rottweiler that has experienced proper socialization and has continuously been receiving love and care from its owners ever since puppyhood would soon cause it to develop a patient and gentle personality. 

Strong but dependent 

Even though Rottweilers act strong and confident, they also have a needy side and can be overly dependent on their owners.

If you’re the type of pet owner who’s always away and doesn’t have much time to spend with your dog, then it might not be the best choice to own a Rottweiler. 

In need of a hands-on owner

These dogs need owners who can provide them enough attention and owners who can train them in becoming obedient and helpful dogs.

Otherwise, there’s a tendency for this breed to develop mental and emotional issues that can affect their quality of life. 

To summarize, Rotties, whether German or American, if they’re raised in a dog-loving home, then there’s no doubt they’ll be the best companions a person can ever ask for. 

Which is More Expensive: A German Rottweiler or an American Rottweiler? 

German Rottweilers are frankly more expensive than American Rottweilers but the maintenance cost of having to take care of either one of them is assessed to be the same. 

Why is the German breed pricier?

You may wonder why German Rottweilers are more expensive than the American breed, and the simplest reason for that is because they are bred better.

To expand this thought, German Rottweilers are sure to undergo a test that would certify they’ve passed the official standard of their dog breed. 

More so, German Rottie dog breeders pay thousands to purchase and import health certified dogs to produce litter; consider the shipping fee from Germany to your state as well. 

Know the prices and who to buy from 

The average price of a German Rottweiler puppy would be $1.500, while an American Rottweiler would cost nearly around $850 or more.

Be mindful that very cheap Rottweilers are commonly produced in puppy mills which would cause a dog to be tied to several health issues in the future.

Always go for a professional ethical breeder whether you’re deciding to get either a German or American Rottie; the price may be higher, but it is rare to find “good” in something that is too cheap. 

Rottweilers are keepers, regardless of their nationality!

Even though the majority of dog experts and enthusiasts would wholly agree that German Rotties are better, American Rottweilers can still be as lovable!

In fact, most dog owners would prefer getting an American breed rather than a German breed because it’s far more affordable.

In addition, having to know whether a Rottie has passed or has been disqualified from the standard breed test would only matter less to many.

After all, owning a healthy and genuine Rottweiler is the most essential trait that would leave most pet owners happy and content.

Avoid unlicensed breeders

Regardless of the kind of Rottweiler, you plan to get, it’s suggested that you purchase it from a trusted breeder and not from those that work in puppy mills as they would only care more about the profit rather than the welfare of the dogs they sell.

This will also keep you from owning a Rottie with genetic diseases that would eventually cost even more.

Entities Responsible For The Rottweilers Differentiation local

Rottweilers as any other pure dog breed are preserved and regulated by people, entities, and agencies: Acknowledging and recognizing a breed of dog is the first step in taking charge of it.


The Department for Animal and Breeder Inspectorate also has a specific division that is assigned solely for the protection and maintenance of pure breeds. This department issue licenses exclusively to breeders who have been vetted by the government regarding their breeding and selling business.

Dog clubs and associations

A dog club or association is a group of people who wants to take care of the welfare and advancement of pure breeds. They monitor not only reputable breeders but also keep track of dogs that do not adhere to the standard set for such breeds.

For the Rottweilers born in Germany, there is the Allgemeiner Deutscher Rottweiler Klub e.V. and for Rottweilers born in the America there is the American Kennel Club (AKC)

Shows and Events

Dog shows and events are made for the purpose of exhibiting/competing, hence finding out who is the best in their breed. Dogs must meet a certain standard before they’re allowed to compete and be judged for such event. These dog shows and events also serve as a basis for how we eventually determine the perfect Rottweiler, either German or American.

Dog Breeders

Dedicated, ethical, and professional Rottweiler breeders are tasked to take care of all the necessary requirements needed for a pure breed. Dog breeders have a big role in distinguishing between German and American Rottweilers. Aside from producing only healthy puppies with good temperament and conformation; they also serve as a bridge between puppy buyers and dog owners, and this way defining the differences between German and American Rotties.

Dog Owners

Dog owners like dog breeders have their own standards. Because Rottweilers are seen as cool, many dog owners like to have them with particular characteristics, so the breeders must continue to breed dogs in such a manner, and this way defining what is German and what is American Rottweilers.

Final Thoughts 

You’re still probably weighing which Rottweiler you want to keep more and you should. Deciding what dog to get takes a lot of research and thinking; it’s also responsible that you do. 

Don’t be too bothered with the differences.

The first breed standard for Rottweilers was assessed plenty of years back and has always been extremely strict.

Putting emphasis on a Rottie’s muscular body structure and broad head with the temperament of being good-natured, fearless, and intelligent. 

While American Rottweilers may not comply wholly with such standards are also less expensive, they still fall under the same dog breed; a slightly distinct kind is not as bad as you think! 

The truth is, there is no wrong choice in getting either a German or an American Rottweiler, it all boils down to the kind of breeder you buy it from as well as your capacity to nurture and provide it an awesome and memorable life!

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Dog Advisory Council

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