The Rottweiler Pitbull mix seems to epitomize everything cool, tough, and even dangerous in a dog.
Why else would you mix two such notorious breeds other than to have the ultimate guard dog or most badass fighting machine?
However, the reputations of Rottie and Pitbull precede the true nature of the mix. Like most dogs, especially crosses, Rottweiler Pitbulls are generally lovable and sociable family members.
Pitweiler is a term that refers to a Rottweiler Pitbull mix and acknowledges the cross as a designer dog.
The two breeds that go into the Pitweiler have physical similarities and differences. A typical result of the cross is a burly medium-large black and tan dog with a broad chest, boxy head, and muscular body and legs. These dogs have a powerful wide-based stance matched with a loving, loyal, alert, and self-assured temperament.
Disregarding the controversy that surrounds purposely crossbred dogs, Pitweilers make excellent family companions for active and assertive owners. You will read how history played a part in the abilities and disposition of each of the parent breeds.
We cover expected traits, training challenges, potential issues with aggression, care, and health of the Rottweiler Pitbull cross.
A Rottweiler Pitbull Mix looks large with a formidable presence
An evenly blended Pitweiler will combine the muscular stocky build of both breeds with the agility and whip-like tail of the Pit Bull Terrier and the broad deep chest and mahogany points of the Rottweiler. Variations in body type include a taller and leaner version.
Pittie Rottie mixes have wide-spaced brown eyes with the pronounced stop of the Rottweiler and a slightly flattened crown and high cheekbones of the Pit.
Although the Rottie is surprisingly quick and mobile for its size, the Pitweiler will have more agility and athleticism. By the same token, however, a Pitweiler will be bigger and stronger than a purebred Pittie.
Rott-Pitt mixes can have either rose ears that stand to the side like a Pit’s or triangular ears that fold down like a Rott’s.
The dog’s gait will be fluid with ground-covering strides. You will notice a slight spring at the trot and a bounding gallop.
How big is a Pitbull Rottweiler Mix?
Pitweilers range from 17 to 25 inches tall at the shoulders and weigh 40 to 100 pounds. Most dogs will average 20 to 22 inches tall and weigh 60 to 80 pounds. Females are significantly smaller than males and do not have quite the muscular bulk.
What are possible colors?
Rottweilers are black with rust or mahogany markings above the eyes, on the cheeks, under the chest, on the front the chest, and on the legs. Pit Bull Terriers can be a wide range of colors.
- Red – Often known as red-nosed; Irish heritage from the 1800s
- Blue – Blue-nosed; Dilute black;
- Fawn – Red tones
- Fawn sable – Fawn with a black overlay
- Seal – Almost black
- Brindle – Fawn with black striping
- Buckskin – Yellow tones; from Jeep bloodline by James Crenshaw started in 1976
- Brindle – Can be red, fawn, black, blue fawn, or plain brindle
- White – Most Pit Bulls have some degree of white including all white
- Merle – Rare; Questionable purity of the line but this does not stop breeders from charging a ludicrous purchase price; Experts suspect Catahoula Leopard Dog bloodlines
Rottie mixes are commonly black and tan but can also be fawn, seal, brindle, brown, tricolor, or blue and tan. Many Pitweilers have white markings on the chest and sometimes a leg.
This video shows a seal Rottweiler Pitbull mix. The seal is nearly black, but you can see red tints in the light. This dog has a head that resembles a Rottweiler but is long in the face.
You can visualize the Rottweiler tail and ears. Pitweilers can be quite stocky, but many are relatively lean and muscular like this dog. You cannot help but notice the dog’s protective nature and how he would deter most intruders.
How do you define the personality of a Rottweiler Pitbull Mix?
A cross between a Rottie and a Pittie is an active and energetic dog. Most will have the drive of the Rottie combined with the tenacity of the Pit Bull Terrier.
Your cross will be alert and might be initially suspicious of strangers or warm up to them immediately.
Regardless of how they react to the first greeting, most well-socialized Rottweiler Pit Bull crosses will quickly accept people you see as friends. How good a guard dog your mix becomes depends on how much contribution she receives from Rottie.
Most Pitweilers are protective enough to make good watchdogs that warn you of visitors or abnormal occurrences. Other personality traits are affection for the family, a desire to engage with your daily routine, intelligence, and loyalty.
Where did the Rottweiler Pitbull Mix originate?
It is likely the American Pitbull Terrier x Rottweiler cross originated in the US to produce a better guard dog out of the former and increase the agility of the latter. The Pitweiler has a murky history.
Drug lords and gang members tried to create larger and more intimidating guard dogs out of their Pit Bulls.
However, illicit fighting rings also added several breeds to the Pit Bull in their attempts to get bigger and even more formidable adversaries. Many returned to the purebred Pit, but their efforts surely resulted in a lot of Rottweiler Pitbull mixes.
As the 2000s advance, more people are seeing the value of the Pitweiler as a family companion, and the cross thus continues to enjoy increasing popularity.
What is Pitweiler’s background?
Rottweilers arose from an ancient livestock guardian type 2,000 years or more ago. Their forefathers likely included the Molosser dogs from Greece and Italian Mastiffs.
Germans developed the Rottweiler after Roman Legions abandoned their dogs in the town of Rottweil around 260 AD.
The Romans had brought the dogs with them across the Alps and established Rottweil in 74 AD. Romans developed a thriving cattle trade among other cultural advances in the area.
Germans selected the best products of the most natural crosses between the Roman Drovers and their local Butcher dogs.
Drover dogs moved cattle by nipping from behind while Butcher dogs pulled carts of meat and carried money purses around their necks. The combination produced an efficient herding dog that was also had exceptional guarding qualities.
Fanciers revived the Rottweiler breed when it approached extinction with the arrival of railroads in the 1800s.
Rottweilers proved their versatility, becoming the fourth official breed of the German Police Dog Association in 1910. Rotties also were invaluable in World war I and among the first breeds to find use as guide dogs for the blind.
Albert Kull formulated a standard in 1883, but the International Club for Leonberger and Rottweiler Dogs did not formally adopt it until 1901. As of 1921, Allgemeiner Deutscher Rottweiler Klub became the official German registry for the Rottie.
The breed has deviated very little in subsequent decades and was accepted into the AKC in 1935. America tweaked its standard in 1979, calling for a leggier dog.
Pit Bull Background
Largely known for an unfortunate reputation as a dangerous dog and exploitation as a fighter, the Pit Bull has proven as versatile and complex as the Rottie.
Ironically a product of an old English ban on cruelty to animals that cracked down on the baiting of bulls and bears, the Pit Bull Terrier started in the pits with rats as its opponents.
In the 1800s, English and Irish blood sports enthusiasts crossed the Old English Bulldog with Old English and other terriers to create speedy, agile, and fierce Bull and Terrier dogs.
The pits were easier to hide from authorities than the rings, and rat baiting quickly replaced torturing bulls. Soon, rat baiters discovered the sport of dogfighting, and the Bull and Terrier took on a new role.
These dogs branched into several lines, some of which eventually abandoned dogfighting. A few derivatives include the American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Bull Terrier, and Colored Bull Terrier.
Pit Bulls arrived in America between the mid-1840s and 1860 and continued as the preferred breed for professional dogfighting.
They also rounded up loose and feral livestock, drove cattle, performed ranch duties such as watching children, served as household companions, and hunted wild hogs.
The UKC accepted Pit Bulls in 1898, but the AKC only recognizes the American Staffordshire Terrier (1936) which split from the Pit Bull some decades ago.
Pit Bulls, like the GSD, seemingly can do anything, including police and therapy work. The universal law banning dogfighting in the United States in 1976 has not seemed to dampen the Pit Bull’s popularity.
However, its persistent label as the most lethal dog and its ban in several countries and locales have sought to discourage ownership.
Are Pitbull crosses dangerous?
Pit Bulls are typically a friendly breed without much aggression towards people. Even for fighting dogs, a tendency to attack humans was considered a serious fault and counterproductive to handling the animals.
However, as criminal rings have expanded, thugs and drug lords train and encourage vicious protectiveness in Pit Bulls.
Rottweilers, on the other hand, have a strong natural guarding instinct but are also polite in social settings.
Their breeding is to be alert and react only when a situation warrants. Criminals, however, also exploit any aggressive tendencies of the Rottie to protect their status and property.
The Pitweiler makes a potentially ferocious dog that attacks with little provocation in the following scenarios.
- Owners with unsavory agendas
- Poorly socialized dogs
- People who unintentionally employ improper protection or guard training
- Puppy mills and other entities concerned with the commercial profits of the mix with no regard for breeding quality dogs or producing a good temperament
As you can deduce from their backgrounds, both the Pitbull and Rottie can be dangerous in the wrong hands, as can any dog.
Poor training methods or lack of socialization lead to aggression. A cross of the Rottie and Pittie creates a powerful dog that can be difficult for many people to handle.
The breeder of your mix is crucial because certain lines of both the Rottweiler and Pit Bull are bred to be particularly aggressive. This is a departure from the acceptable standard temperament.
There appears to be a strong correlation between criminal owners and vicious dogs. Evidence exists that the use of Pitbulls since the 1980s has extended to guarding illicit activities such as drugs and organized crime.
As a result, there has been a greater shift towards breeding attack dogs and canids that specialize in aggression against law enforcement entities.
Due diligence on your part in the form of thorough research on the breeder, commitment to an imaginative exercise program, and dedication to advanced training and socialization will lead to an excellent friend and stable and calm companion.
That being said, be aware of any breed-specific legislature that may ban Pitbulls, Rottweilers, and their mixes from living in certain locales, obtaining insurance, or even flying.
Rottweiler Pitbull mixes are smart dogs
Rotties rank among the top ten dogs when it comes to working intelligence. The American Staffordshire Terrier, the closest living relative of the Pit Bull, ranks No. 48 out of the 138 most intelligent dogs.
The ranking system mostly assesses a dog’s ability to learn from its handlers although it also acknowledges the contribution of adaption (problem-solving) and instinct (knack of a dog for the intended job of its breed).
Your Pitweiler will most likely rank in the top 25 dogs for working intelligence, similar to a Weimeraner or Belgian Malinois.
However, you will have to contend with the strong-mindedness and willful independence of the Rottweiler and the stubbornness of the Pit Bull.
An unassertive owner may find themselves facing off with a dominant Pitweiler or one who simply ignores your commands.
Novice owners should consider professional help to properly train their dogs. Harsh training methods or abuse will disrupt any groundwork you can lay.
Not only will force set you back weeks, but it can also create resentment in your dog or break the bond of trust between you and your pet.
Are Rottweiler Pits Mix healthy?
Larger Rottie Pits suffer more orthopedic problems than medium-sized individuals. Otherwise, the cross is relatively healthy, living 12 to 15 years. They can suffer from a variety of ailments.
- Aortic stenosis – Common in large breeds; Narrowing of the major vessel from heart to lungs
- Hip dysplasia – Growth abnormality of the hip joint that leads to joint incongruity and pain in puppies and arthritis in adults
- Elbow dysplasia (Rottie)
- Entropion (Lids roll inward) or ectropion (lids droop)
- Allergies – Can lead to skin conditions or chronic ear infections
- Bloat or GDV – Large or deep-chested breeds; Stomach swells with gas and flips; Associated with feeding in elevated dishes, drinking excessively before exercising, and eating large meals
Rottweiler Pitbull Mix are high-maintenance dogs
Rottweiler Pit Bull crosses do not have many grooming needs, but they require a lot of attention, exercise, and food.
- Attention – Working dogs that do not function well for long on their own; Boredom will lead to chewing, digging, and excessive barking
- Exercise – Adults need over two hours a day; Pitweilers have high stamina but their exercise is better divided into two sessions; Lack of exercise can lead to obesity or an explosion of energy in exuberant and inappropriate behavior
- Grooming – Brush coat one or two times a week
- Clip nails every 4 to 8 weeks
- Feeding – Meat should be one or more of the top five ingredients; Feed high-quality fats and talk to your veterinarian about carbs; A dog that gets appropriate exercise will need 30 to 35 calories per pound per day; Working dogs and growing puppies need up to twice as much
- Mental stimulation – Engaging games and plenty of toys; Training; Partnering activities such as agility, Schutzhund, Ring, search and rescue
Examples of the Rottweiler Pitbull mix
This Pitbull mix is an uncommon brindle and white color. The red and white dog is a good example of a purebred Pitbull Terrier.
Notice the puppy’s rose ears and how he looks like he will be larger and less compact than a Pitbull.
At this age, the dog’s size makes it difficult to distinguish him from a Pitbull, but you can see the deeper muzzle, thicker neck, and more pronounced stop (slope between forehead and snout).
This dog is probably going to be two inches taller than the Pit Bull and 25 pounds heavier.
This dog shows the common black and tan of the mix. The head is Rottweiler in appearance but looks a little more refined with slightly smaller features and a different ear set.
The tail is more like a Pit Bull than a Rottweiler’s. Note how this dog is clearly strong and muscular but its stature is smaller than a Rottie.