Dobermans & Their Sense of Smell [7 Things You Should Know]

Dobermans & sense of smell

The sense of smell is a distinctive trait of dogs, including Dobermans. This unique feature is incredibly useful for them in performing everyday tasks, and it can also benefit humans in various ways.

As there are conflicting explanations regarding Dobermans and their sense of smell, I’ve created an informative article that covers seven things you need to know about this topic.

I highly recommend using the table of contents below to navigate to the section that interests you.

Do Dobermans Have A Good Sense Of Smell?

As most people know, the breed that holds the title for the master of sense of smell in the canine world is Bloodhound. The second place goes to Basset hounds, and The Beagles managed to defend the third place.

If we forget about these experts of “sense of smell in the canine world, Dobermans are very intelligent, and they know how to use their brain with the keen sense of smell.

Although Doberman’s ability to sense smell is slightly lower when compared to bloodhounds, basset hounds, Dobermans can give good competition against these dogs with their high intelligence, confidence, alert. Dobermans have a good sense of smell and tracking ability when all of this is added up.

Because of that, they are unparalleled in tracking ability beyond any doubt.

How Far Can Dobermans Smell?

It is not enough to know that Dobermans have a keen sense of smell. It is perfect for giving a numerical value to this answer. Let’s figure out how far a Doberman can smell.

I would like to explain how dog nose works, including Dobermans, prior to giving a numerical answer. By doing so, you can get a precise explanation.

As everyone knows, dogs have two air passages to their nose. The specialty is that one air passage is used for scenting or smelling the air while the other passage is used for inhaling the air.

If we look at this process in terms of percentages, the smelling chamber acquires around 12% of the air.

The pressure of breathing out helps them to determine the new odors as your Doberman exhales.

The scientific explanation seems to suffice.

If you really know how far can a Doberman smell, the easiest and regretful answer is “It depends!”. Hey,.. don’t get in a flap. Just look at the following paragraph.

Since Dobermans have a keen sense of smell and hearing, They have the ability to identify what they intend to detect even a half-mile away from them. But, this ability depends on the training, weather, wind speed, temperature, the number of objects between Doberman and scent, and the wind speed.

If you are confused by the above answer, here are some more!

  • Your Doberman’s sense of smell tends to increase incredibly during the fall and the spring as the ground is relatively cooler than air.
  • Besides that, this ability will be weakened in summer as the air and land are dry.
  • They will perform well with sprinkles of rain.

Do Dobermans Lose Their Sense Of Smell?

First and foremost, I need to mention that most first-time Doberman owners get frightened by this kind of myth. I would like to advise you that there is no truth regarding this whatsoever.

I own a female Doberman, and I have dealt with so many Dobermans (Actually, some of them are more than 7 years old!) during my whole life. Trust me, I have never seen anything like it.

Then why do some Dobermans lose their sense of smell?

The sense of smell of some Dobermans may lose or get weaker due to allergies and infections, aging, Anosmia circumstances, tract problems of respiratory, injuries to the head, and if the Doberman inhales caustic or toxic thing. Apart from these reasons, Dobermans won’t lose their sense of smell.

So know that it is just a myth!

Do Dobermans Lose Their Sense Of Smell At Night?

Even though we discussed above whether they lose their ability to sniff and observe things, someone may wonder that whether they lose this ability at night as people spread false information.

Frankly, there is no such thing as to be a worry. If you are a proud owner of a Doberman, just go ahead without worrying about these worries too much.

However, here are the key reasons why some Dobermans lose their sense of smell if you haven’t read the above section.

  • Sensory decline as they get older. (This is the truth of nature.)
  • If your Doberman inhales caustic or toxic something.
  • This can happen due to head injuries.
  • Tract problems of respiratory.
  • Anosmia circumstances.

In addition to these reasons, your Dobie may experience temporary loss of smell due to several reasons.

Have you ever seen that a dog’s nose is wet and cool? This wet nose helps them to catch the odor particles and makes it easier to detect the smell.

Next time you go out with your Dobie, examine its tongue and the nose whenever it tries to focus on something. Maybe he felt the smell of a rat or something delicious.

The first possible cause we can consider.

You will see that the Doberman continuously lick its nose just to keep the nose wet. So, the more your dog’s nose gets wet, the ability to smell is higher.

Here we can connect your curiosity with a suitable cause. Your Doberman may have a dry nose while sleeping at night as they don’t lick their noses during the slumber.

So, they will have a dry nose, and if you may, coincidence finds it’s some lack of smelling ability.

Here we came to the next point.

In general, dogs need to get short bursts in order to hold the scent. Only then can they detect the odor precisely.

So, if your Doberman is fatigued or overheated due to some reason, it may pant excessively. The higher the panting rate is, the lower the ability to hold the breath, resulting in a temporary loss of 40% of the sense of smell.

So, you need to be aware of when giving exercises.

Recommended Reading: 7 Things you need to know about Dobermans and the sense of smell.

How to tell if your Doberman has lost its sense of smell?

The dog nose is one of the most important sensory organs in dogs, including Dobermans, and there is no technique to replace this ability as humans do when decreased hearing.

There is no definite way to tell if your dog has lost or weakened its sense of smell. However, you can try the following.

  • Actually, This is something I have personally experienced with my Dobie just for fun. Put a favorite dog treat close to his nose whenever the dog takes a nap and see the reaction. It doesn’t matter how deep the sleep is, he will definitely get up and tries to catch the treat.
  • Obviously, the second method is consulting a veterinarian.

By the way, here is a complete guide about what Dobermans can and can’t eat.

What Are The Possible Drawbacks Of Losing Sense Of Smell In Dobermans?

Your Doberman would have to so many difficulties if he lost the ability to scent things. To be honest, it seems like he lost their sense of sight!

That means they won’t be able to function properly as they used to do. That means, if your Doberman cannot observe the particular scents, he will definitely find himself Inability to function appropriately in their environment.

This may cause several issues as follows.

  • They will face difficulties when interacting with other dogs. In fact, the ability t defend themselves in a case of a fight, or if the dog wants to avoid encountering another dog face to face just to protect itself, will decrease.
  • They cannot find a proper place to pee during a walk. In general, dogs do this scent marking for several reasons, including track themselves to find the path as they return. But, they need to make sure not to pee on other dog’s territory. So, without the sense of smell, how can they do that?
  • There is a chance of getting attacked by other dogs as your Doberman enters another dog’s territory inadvertently.
  • If a dog loses the sense of smell at an early age, potty training will be a much trickier task.
  • They cannot behave like other dogs during the walks. Perhaps they will have to face some trouble as they not sniffing up anything to understand the way forward.

How to improve the sense of smell in Dobermans?

Of course, there are several methods that will help enhance the sense of smell in your loving pooch! So, let’s figure out what they are.

  • Having a proper diet will certainly help. This “proper” doesn’t define the regular nutrition for a regular energetic and active Doberman needs. Once you figured out this issue, several foods can enhance the sense of smell in dogs. To get a good idea, it’s better to chat with your veterinarian to figure out the exact amounts of that specific foods and nutrition after performing a complete checkup.

By the way, if you wanna know whether Dobermans are picky eaters, simply click on the link!

  • Engage in games that can improve the scent, including double-blind shell game, shell game, troubleshooting, the blind shell game.
  • Perform scent work training.

Things To Be Aware Of.

Now you seem to have a whole pile of awareness of Dobermans and a sense of their smell. But is that enough? Of course, not. So, let’s look into several facts you need to be aware of a responsible Doberman owner.

Remove hazardous things: The nose is a wonderful tool that your dog has. It’s better to get rid of hazardous things for your dog’s nose around the house. Probably, these things can be chemical bottles, unsecured power lines.

Don’t forget regular vet checkups: Regular vet checkups are crucial in order to figure out that your dog stays happy and healthy without any problem.

Get professionals to help: We discussed that the sense of smell in Dobermans can be enhanced with scent work training. If you are unable to perform such a task, consider seeking professionals help.

Test whether their sense of smell is fully functional: To do that, I highly recommend doing the simple exercise once in a while that we discussed earlier.

Create an appropriate diet: Always provide an appropriate diet plan and check and update your veterinarian whenever you attend regular vet checkups.

Keep the dog hydrated: You have to supervise your Doberman’s water intake to prevent issues like dehydration.


Thanks for being responsible with your Doberman! Most Doberman owners have a handful of questions regarding their dogs and their sense of smell. Because of that, I created a complete guide that possibly covers every aspect of this matter. Hope you found this helpful. Have a nice day!

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