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Butchers Wallet


Some of you may own a Metzgerhund and not even know it.

If your dog is the same breed as what appears in the picture, yup, you have a Metzgerhund. These days, we call these dogs Rottweilers (pronounced Rott-vile-er, according to the breed club in the UK), a shortened version of of the breed’s original name: Rottweiler Metzgerhund, or butcher’s dog of Rottweiler (a village).

Rottweilers originally drove cattle to market, but when railways spread like capillaries in the 19th century, cattle herding was outlawed, and the Rottweiler was without a job. Butchers came to use the dogs as draught dogs, and while the dogs no longer pull little carts, their name is forever linked with butchers.

A final parting anecdote we’ve shared before, but it’s worth repeating.  As the story goes, at the end of a long drive, and after they sold their cattle, drovers would go to the bierkeller to celebrate. Knowing they’d be in no state to think clearly at the end of the night, they would tie their money from the cattle sale around the Rottweiler’s neck, certain that no matter how barking drunk (ha, a pun) they became, their money would be safe until they sobered up.

Image of Rottweiler and Butcher’s Cart print found on Ebay where it’s still available as of this writing




The Rottweiler (/ˈrɒtwaɪlər/, UK also /-vaɪlər/)[1][2] is a breed of domestic dog, regarded as medium-to-large[3][4] or large.[5][6] The dogs were known in German as Rottweiler Metzgerhund, meaning Rottweil butchers' dogs,[7][8] because their main use was to herd livestock[3] and pull carts laden with butchered meat to market.[7] This continued until the mid-19th century when railways replaced droving. Although still used to herd stock in many parts of the world, Rottweilers are now also used as search and rescue dogs, as guard dogs, and as police dogs.[9]

drover dog from Roman Army