You may have heard about long-haired Rottweilers and wonder if they’re real. How can there be a long-haired version of a breed prized for its shorter, sleeker coat?
What Are Rottweiler Coats Like?
According to a Love of Rottweilers, long-haired Rottweilers are rare and not typically in line with the breed standard. A Rottie with a long coat may have another breed in the mix.
Rotties have coats that are medium-length and somewhat coarse to the touch. An undercoat will be visible on the thighs and neck. The breeching area will have longer hair, although not reaching a length that requires trimming.
A coat that is long or wavy in appearance is a disqualifier for the American Kennel Club. Rottweilers with coats that deviate from this norm may be either purebred or mixed-breed but are unlikely to come from show lines with such traits.
This video demonstrates what a Rottie with a long coat might look like. These dogs have a different type of appearance from most other Rottweilers, often looking fluffier.
Is There a Demand for Long-Haired Rottweilers?
According to the American Kennel Club, Rottweilers with long coats are outside the breed standard.
Because these dogs do not conform to the breed standard, most breeders will not sell them. Long-haired Rotties are ineligible for the show ring and may produce puppies who would also not be suited for breeding.
Long-haired puppies are often spayed or neutered as a condition of the sale or before being sold. These puppies will be marketed as being suitable for pets rather than for breeding purposes.
People who are looking for a Rottweiler as a pet-quality only dog are likely to find that these dogs meet their needs. Despite having a coat that differs from those of most other Rottweilers, these dogs retain other desirable Rottweiler traits.
Some people end up attracted to the idea of a long-haired Rottweiler because these dogs look different. When a Rottweiler has a long coat, its appearance is often described as bear-like. Having such an unusual Rottie has appeal for many owners.
Some owners who are into a lot of outdoor events might find the idea of a dog with a longer coat desirable. Rottweilers are hardy dogs who tolerate cold reasonably well. However, a long coat provides extra protection for adventures in wintery weather.
Are There Any Health Risks for Long-Haired Rotties in Particular?
Because Rottweilers with long coats may be the result of breeding practices or cross-breeding, many prospective owners have an important consideration. Are long-haired Rotties more susceptible to health problems than other Rottweilers?
The short answer to this question is no. Rotties with long coats have similar health risks to their shorter-coated counterparts. However, there are two special considerations to keep in mind: backyard-bred dogs and cross-bred dogs.
Backyard-bred Rottweilers are the product of poorly experienced breeders who do not keep health in mind, according to North Shore Animal League.
In addition to not breeding with health in mind, irresponsible breeders also show little care in placing puppies with new owners. Many of these puppies end up being relinquished to shelters or abandoned.
Cross-bred dogs may inherit health problems from their Rottie parent, as well as the parent from the other breed. These dogs have a greater risk of inheriting health issues that are common with both breeds.
Other breeds commonly crossed with Rottweilers that may produce long coats include Huskies, Golden Retrievers, and German Shepherds. The dog may have a stronger Rottweiler appearance, resemble the other breed, or look like a mix of both.
There are five common types of health issues affecting Rotties, including long-haired dogs.
Cancer, including bone cancer, and lymphoma, is a severe health threat to Rottweilers. Regular veterinary care will help catch most cancers at a reasonably early phase. Surgery and chemotherapy are often effective treatments for cancer.
Elbow and hip dysplasia are conditions that involve displacement of the respective joints. These conditions can be very painful and lead to difficulty walking. Surgery is possible when all other treatments have been tried and proved unsuccessful.
Aortic stenosis involves restricted blood flow between the heart’s left ventricle and the aorta. This condition can cause heart attacks but is relatively easy to detect with tests like echoes or EKGs.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy is a progressive disease that begins with night blindness and results in eventual vision loss. Although there is no cure possible, early detection helps give the owner time to adjust and help their dog.
Parasites, particularly heartworms, are also a possible health threat for Rotties. Although heartworm infestations can cause health problems, preventative products can help keep dogs from becoming infected.
What is the Best Way to Care for a Long Haired Rottie’s Coat?
Dr. Melinda J. Mayfield-Davis emphasizes the importance of daily grooming for all long-haired dogs, regardless of the breed.
A monthly bath with a gentle shampoo can help provide the cleansing your dog needs without drying out your pet’s coat. Always work from the head down to give the coat sufficient coverage. Allow the dog to shake off to permit faster drying.
You will want to think about whether you prefer a towel or blow-drying. Your dog’s comfort level around a hairdryer is one of the things to consider. If the air temperature is warm enough, you may allow the coat to try naturally.
Follow up with brushing after you bathe the dog to help remove loose hair. Bathing a dog helps stimulate hair growth, which will make shedding loose hair more common after rinsing. Helping your Rottweiler get rid of this hair is healthy for their coat.
Trimming your dog’s coat occasionally is an excellent way to prevent mats and tangles. Tangled, matted hair looks unsightly and can be painful for your Rottweiler if you try to comb it out. Trimming your dog’s coat will help prevent this situation.
Always remember to clean your dog’s ears at least weekly. Mites and yeast infections are more common than many pet owners realize. A gentle veterinarian or groomer-recommended ear cleaner will help perform the job effectively.
What Are a Long Haired Rottie’s Nutritional Needs?
Long-haired Rottweilers share the exact nutritional needs as other Rotties. Most dogs of this breed eat twice a day. When feeding dry food, the amount of food provided will vary between four and ten cups for most adults.
Dog food formulated for Rottweilers or large breeds, in general, will provide these dogs with the nutrition they need. If meat is the first ingredient, with more meat than grains, your dog is likely to get the protein they need.
Use large-breed puppy food for a dog younger than 18 months. Age-appropriate food will help your puppy keep a healthy coat as they mature. Always feed your dog of any age according to guidance from your vet or breeder, if applicable.
What Are the Most Important Things to Remember?
Although long-haired Rotties are not common, they have a lot to offer owners looking for unique dogs. These dogs have the same health concerns as other Rottweilers and share the breed’s other traits, including great personalities.
The most significant difference that owners will notice with these dogs is that they require a little more grooming than other Rotties. Occasional trimming may help prevent tangling and matting.
Long-haired Rottweilers are popular family pets that have a lot to offer their families. These dogs are somewhat rare, but many can understand their popularity among owners.