Doberman pinscher [key], breed of large, compact working dog originating in Germany c.1890. It stands from 24 to 28 in. (61–71 cm) high at the shoulder and weighs from 60 to 75 lb (27–34 kg). Its short, smooth, close-lying coat may be black, brown, or blue in color with rust red markings above the eyes and on the muzzle, chest, legs, and vent. The Doberman was named for Louis Dobermann of Apolda, Germany, who developed the breed by crossing native German sheepherding-dog stock with the Rottweiler, Manchester terrier, and the old German pinscher. The Doberman was first used as a guard dog and pet. Later, when its great capacity for training was appreciated, it became increasingly popular as a police and war dog. See dog.
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