To the untrained eye, there are very few differences between male and female Rottweilers, especially if they’re on their own without their counterpart to be compared to.
Knowing the differences between male and female Rottweilers could be the deciding factor between which of the puppy litter you’ll pick. There are differences not only in size but in temperament, maturity, and energy levels.
How do you Make the Choice?
We get it – when faced with a litter of adorable Rottie puppies, it’s tempting to take all of them.
But choosing a dog is as much about your own needs and preferences. For example, a male Rottweiler is always going to be taller and heavier than his sister.
Does Size Matter to You?
Male Rottweilers reach a height of around 27 inches or 69 centimeters. Females are a little shorter, at 24 inches, or 61 centimeters.
Height probably won’t make much of a difference as a preference as these dogs are already considered medium-large breeds, but the weight difference may tip the scales one way or the other, both literally and figuratively.
While females will top the scales at a maximum of 110 pounds or 48 kilograms, a male Rottweiler has her beat by almost 20 pounds more. Males can reach 130 pounds or 60 kilograms.
This is what could make up your mind. All dog owners should be able to physically handle their dogs and Rottweilers in particular need a firm hand.
The extra weight, especially when translated into brute strength, could be too much for some owners, so they’ll choose a male over a female.
Other Physical Differences
While the males weigh more, you’ll find those female Rottweilers tend to be rounder in the stomach. Much of this is related to fat displacement. Males store less fat and more muscle, whereas females are often the other way around.
Either way, both sexes of this breed are at risk of rapid health gain, so it’s important for owners to stay on top of their diets because a Rottweiler that’s carrying too much weight is more at risk of health problems, including joint issues and some cancers.
But What About Temperament?
Often, behavioral differences come down to an individual dog’s temperament, and not their sex. Even with all the textbooks in the world, some dogs will simply buck the trend and act differently than expected.
Despite that caveat, it helps to know that there are generally some real differences between male and female Rottweilers, and this too can affect the decision as to which sex from the litter you’re going to pick.
There’s Little Difference Until Puberty
It all comes down to hormones.
Whether you bring home a male or female Rottweiler puppy, the overall experience for the family will be the same. Puppies are very playful, with loving, attentive temperaments.
There’s no evidence for any difference in intelligence levels between the sexes, so there’s nothing to suggest that either sex learns any quicker than the other. It means that they’re neck and neck for such milestones as toilet training and learning basic commands.
And then, of course, puberty hits!
Both sexes begin to mature sexually at around the same time, but it’s more noticeable in females because of their heat cycles when the dog begins to drop blood from her vagina.
Other signs that a female is coming into heat will be vaginal swelling, along with looking for male dogs and ‘flirting’ with them.
A female Rottweiler will usually have her first heat cycle at the age of 12 months, but it can occur as early as 6 months of age. It is advised that no female bears puppies until she reaches full maturity, which should be around two years of age.
Male mammals don’t have heat cycles like females do, and so you won’t notice any physical changes in your male Rottweiler. His testicles will likely become larger and will ‘drop’ around the age of six months.
It’s at this age that males will begin to mark their territory. Those of you with male dogs will be familiar with long walks made even longer, thanks to your male Rottie’s need to cock his leg at every available tree and lamp post.
There’s nothing truly unique about a Rottweiler’s puberty when compared to that of other dogs, but it’s once they reach sexual maturity that you may notice a difference in their temperaments.
Male Rottweilers Forget Their Size
Once they reach adolescence, Rottweilers are often very different in the way they move, especially about the house. Females remain docile and slow-moving, whereas males become clumsy lumps of energy.
Like all teenage boys, Rottweilers become high on surges of testosterone that infuse them with energy and have them wanting to play, run, and play some more.
They become very accident-prone, knocking into tables and chairs as they forget that they’re no longer puppies and are now packing some serious weight.
What About Aggression?
Again, this comes down to the individual animal, but it’s thought that females are less aggressive as guard dogs, but that they’re more protective of the humans of the home.
Males are programmed to guard the house and everyone in it, but for females, it’s the mothering instinct that takes charge as they’re more likely to stand between their humans than their property.
Females are thought to be aggressive towards other females, and this is again purely instinctual, but owners should be aware of this when walking their dog outside, particularly during times the female is in heat.
As for the damage they can inflict, there is practically no difference at all. Both males and females are incredibly powerful dogs and if they’re in a fight with other dogs, both sexes can do colossal damage, hence the need for muzzles if they’re prone to aggression.
Who’s More Loyal?
Both males and females are renowned for their loyalty; it’s what draws so many people to the Rottweiler breed. Neither one sex nor the other has the edge in this regard, as both adore their owners and live to make them happy.
What About Training?
As puppies, as we’ve mentioned, there’s little difference, but it’s thought that as the males and females mature, different approaches are needed in training, because of the different temperaments.
Females, being more docile and playful, are thought to be easier to train, whereas males are more stubborn and wilful and need a firmer hand.
Males will also test their owners more, pushing their boundaries as they attempt to establish themselves as the Alpha of the house. It’s vital that you do not allow this to happen!
Males are thought to be easier to train as show dogs because they have a stronger desire to make their owner happy, and a deeper work ethic which means that they never want to stop learning and getting the task right.
Which One Gets Your Vote?
Male or female, you can be sure that whichever Rottweiler you go for will be a wonderful addition to the family.
Whether you pick a male or a female, remember that early socialization, early training, and a firm and are necessary for this breed.