Vito at 7 months!


Jr Member
Hey Doberman Fam! Feels like it’s been forever, since Vito and I have checked in! So, let’s catch up… Cool with y’all? - Ok cool!

Where do I start? We’ve been very intentional about socializing and exposing Vito to a lot of ordinary, and semi extraordinary things. If you all remember a while ago around Vito’s 3rd maybe 4th month we had two incidents involving a fire truck, and a loose dog running up on Vito bluffing an attack. Since then we had a block party, where I met some amazing firemen who agreed to let me bring Vito to the station and let him become familiar with the trucks. We did that a total of 5 times in between 4-6 months, I played the siren noises while we were at the trucks each time, and the last two times he didn’t care about the trucks or the sounds… he was more interested in the amazingly grassy areas that surround the station! I do think a few more sessions would help.

Our community is full of dogs, so we tend to see a lot of dogs when we’re out on walks, and he unfortunately is not too fond of them, ESPECIALLY males. While he isn’t a huge barker, his demeanor changes, ears poke up, hair stands up and I can tell his energy shifts to protection/combat mode. So we probably won’t do many “puppy play dates” (not that I’d ever been a fan). He does get along with my mother in laws 4 year old Pomeranian lol. She bosses him around and let’s him know when she’s done playing, he’s grown up around her so of course that level of respect is there.

Vito is emerging as one heck of a protector, when he’s in the yard or on the balcony he will bark if someone gets “too close”. As someone who has raised and owned dogs for 21 years I can tell he is not bluffing the slightest bit. One thing that intrigued me as a 1st time Doberman owner was his instincts. Sheesh! We are surrounded by woods, and often walk the trails within the woods. While he knows how to heel, he sometimes walks slightly in front - just a few paces, and boy is he on security duty! It seems as if he hears and notices every little thing… he will stop for a quick second and almost immediately there’s a squirrel, a deer, or a pack of turkeys! Other times he takes a break and there is someone in front or behind us. He senses the Amazon/Fed ex guy or gal approaching the stairs before they even show up on the camera!

Lastly… obedience training has been going good, we work maybe 15-20 mins 3-4Xs a week. I will make more time to bump that up to at least 6 days a week. He’s housebroken and rarely wets his crate, I’ve been allowing him to nap in the living-room more, with the goal of him eventually being able to sleep overnight outside of his crate, and free roam the house in the next year or so. He’s also on rare occasion started to display some defiance, starting around late 5, early 6 months. You’d command him into a sit, or any other command and he will just gallop off, play, etc. Giving you the “catch me if you can” demeanor. I never chase after him, when he comes to me, he’s met with the same command he didn’t adhere to lol. Overall, I’m loving and enjoying this journey, thus far he is close to the best dog I’ve ever owned.

As always I appreciate you all for taking the time to read! Peace!


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It sounds like things are going great and you're doing a fantastic job with him!

He sure is a handsome boy!
What a good looking boy he is! Seems like you are doing great with his exposure to things and he's adjusting to most of it like he should. Only thing I'd add (haha, you asked, right?)
command him into a sit, or any other command and he will just gallop off, play, etc. Giving you the “catch me if you can” demeanor. I never chase after him, when he comes to me, he’s met with the same command he didn’t adhere to lol.
^^^ The more they learn they can rehearse a behavior the more they will do that. Simple fix is a long line or leash - so he can't gallop off. It's excellent that you don't chase because then he thinks he's invented a game, and believe me, this will make him DELIGHTED and want to repeat it to get the chase going! So if you think it's a place or situation where he might gallop off at a command, do one of two things: either have a leash or long line on him so he can't, OR simply don't ask the command so he can't disobey.

You are really doing great with your first Dobe experience! Keep it up and keep giving us updates. AND his ears look awesome!
Our sweet girl has no mean bones in her body, but she can be somewhat aggressive in play. Nowhere is that more apparent than when she is in her own back yard playing that “catch me if you can” game. I learned that ignoring her behavior became a conduit to escalated behavior, where she added the occasional body slam or “drive by bump”. It is play, but with an edge of territorial claiming that I cannot tolerate. At 20 months, that behavior rarely surfaces, but it took quick decisive action on our part to squelch it. Also, Sasha has always been very sociable with people, but there are certain people that she can be very randomly alert to, with Mohawk and deep growl coming out of nowhere. I guess what I am saying is that no matter how well trained they are, there are tendencies and behaviors that are so deeply ingrained that one must always, like them, be on alert to their reactions. She truly is the best dog we have ever had, and definitely the smartest. Best of luck thru the teens!