The History of the Rottweiler
The Rottweiler is believed to be a descendant of the drover dogs of ancient Rome. As the Roman Legions advanced into Central Europe they were accompanied by herds of sheep and cattle. During this time period for an army to move it had to bring it's own food and supplies. Butchers, wheel-wrights, blacksmiths, carpenters, many people of every trade and skill were necessary to equip and maintain this city on the move. The mastiff-type drover dogs served as escorts to the herds and guardians of the camp. One of the Legion's campsites was on the banks of the Neckar River at a place which became known as Rottweil. The encampment at Rottweil lasted a particularly long time. In fact, the village derived it's name from the red tile roofs that were built by the Romans
As a legacy of their presence, the Roman Legions left their impact not only on the name of the village, but established a cattle industry in the area - as well as the drover dogs to accompany these herds.
Throughout the mid-1800's the cattle trading market flourished in Rottweil. The Rottweiler Metzgerhund (butcher dog) had the capabilities to drive the cattle to market and to guard their owner (and his purse) on his way home. Between the growth of villages into cities and the development of railway systems - the massive cattle drives to city markets ceased to exist. The Rottweiler (as he became known) suffered a major decline in popularity.
Early in the 1900's this breed experienced a rebirth of popularity, when Rottweilers were found to be more than adequate as police dogs and family guardians. In 1931 Rottweiler were admitted to the AKC Stud Book, and gained full recognition by the AKC in 1935.