USA Rottweilers

USA Rottweilers

Rottweiler Puppy

About this web site...

This web site was created as a way to document and share information concerning the United States Rottweiler as dictated by the AKC/ARC (American Kennel Club/American Rottweiler Club) breed standard. As many  ARC members are aware, there is another movement to accept full tails into the Rottweiler breed standard, but the Rottweiler is a docked breed.


The previous process initially asked the members If they wanted the standard to be opened, and the majority of members voted to open.  Peter Piusz was appointed as the "one-man tail revision committee" and submitted 3 options for members to vote on in an effort to come up with an option that would ultimately be sent to the members, which were:

  1. no change to current standard,
  2. tail to be severely penalized, or
  3. tail must be docked

The options "tail must be docked: and "tail to be severely penalized" received the most votes. Members were sent a ballot on November 6, 2006. The proposed revision in 2006 was:

The Rottweiler is a docked breed. Tail is docked short, close to the body, leaving only one or two vertebrae. A properly set docked tail gives an impression of elongation of the topline and is carried slightly above horizontal when the dog is excited or moving. Any deviation from a docked tail is to be severely penalized.

Voting closed with the ballots postmarked December 12, 2006. A total of 684 members submitted a vote. Of those, 439 voted to approve the proposed Standard revision and 245 voted against the proposed Standard revision. Thus, the proposed Standard revision did not receive the requisite 2/3 approved by the members. A mere 17 votes for the proposed Standard revision and we would not be revisiting this issue today.

The bottom line is that this Board did not use the same process. The Committee of three were "fired" and another Committee should have been appointed at that time, ideally  with a pro-docked member, a pro-choice member, and a “leave the standard unchanged” member.

The Board did not ask for a member vote on opening the standard, nor did not ask for a member vote (poll). In addition, they did not request member input before submitting the proposal for AKC approval. On the 2005 proposal the members truly had input before any proposal was sent to AKC for approval.

It began when the ARC President and his wife imported a tailed Rottweiler from Belgium in late 2010.  Most thought they imported the dog for breeding purposes, or to show in USRC events.  It was quite a shock when the tailed dog showed up in the AKC conformation ring, and even more so when he was the cover dog of the club newsletter, the ARK, as well as numerous other dog publications.

One would think the club President would be the one individual who - without a doubt - should uphold, protect and support the Constitution for which he holds office.  One of the club's constitution's objectives is: "to urge members and breeders to accept the Standard of the Breed as approved by the American Kennel Club as the only standard of excellence by which Rottweilers shall be judged."

Could it be possible that the ARC President's real goal is for the U.S. breed standard to fall under the auspices of the ADRK, or to eventually allow only full tailed Rottweilers?

And in order to appease the AKC and ARC membership - initially, he will market this movement as "pro choice" allowing both tailed and docked Rottweilers in the standard, but then...eventually only tailed?

This disturbance caused a multitude of actions by concerned members and Rottweiler owners including filed grievances and letters of question and discontent.  It became apparent that the ARC President's agenda is to change the "AKC Rottweiler landscape" and allow full tails into the standard.  A group of concerned members then joined forces to dutifully protect the essence of the Rottweiler, keeping it docked, as well as request the parent club to also confirm that the current breed standard stipulates a docked tail, with these actions:

  1. A petition to revise the current breed standard was circulated to specify: "Tail - Tail docked short, close to body, leaving one or two tail vertebrae. Properly set, the docked tail is carried slightly above horizontal when the dog is excited or moving. An undocked tail should be severely penalized."
  2. A motion was made at the annual ARC meeting in Lancaster on May 13 recommending that the board confirm that the standard (as approved by AKC) stipulates a Rottweiler should have a docked tail.  The motion passed the membership balloting, but when it came time for the ARC board to confirm the motion, the majority voted against it.  How can a board (who is supposed to be representing the majority of membership) vote against the majority?

This “tail revision dilemma” has been in the works for a number of years.  Approximately five years ago, the board exercised a similar process of standard modification – sending the revision to AKC before consulting the members.  The standard revision did not pass membership vote.  Why would the ARC board act without the input of the membership?  What is even more troubling – the current ARC board has sent two separate tail revisions to AKC without polling the membership. 

This should be about the dogs - about preserving the true Rottweiler standard and type. This should not be about appeasing the wills of people who want to control the avenues by which they can campaign...

Some members reverberate the “pro-choice” statement, adding they will always prefer docked, but think allowing full tails into the AKC ring is a way to bring more members into the club, and open up the gene pool. In our opinion, “pro-choice” is a misconception.

With the now ‘open door’ ARC membership policy, the ARC membership is seeing a significant increase of USRC (United States Rottweiler Club) applicants.  What some may not be aware of -- as of January 1, 2012, all USRC members will be prohibited from docking tails. (see 'A.1.' Breeding Regulations - General).

This should be about the dogs - about preserving the true Rottweiler standard and type. This should not be about appeasing the wills of people who want to control the avenues by which they can campaign their tailed Rottweilers or by the so-called animal rights extremists.


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