Best Large Guard Dog Breeds – Smart, loyal and courageous – if I had to narrow down the traits of the best watchdog, these would probably be it. No one wants their dog to have to put up a fight (cuddle is preferable), but if you want a dog that is more likely to run
Although some dogs may be preferable based on their size and personality traits, any dog can be trained to help protect your home and family, Patrick Mahaney, V.M.D., a veterinarian in Los Angeles, tells Woman’s Day. Many potential owners looking for a watchdog turn to large dog breeds, though they aren’t the only ones that put up a fight. Medium-sized dogs and herding dogs are also protective and have been known to ward off people with bad intentions.
Best Large Guard Dog Breeds
That said, you can’t rely on breed alone. “The degree to which a dog breed will protect is individual to each dog,” says Dr. Mahaney. “There are times when a particular breed that would otherwise be known as a watchdog will not exhibit a natural protective tendency.”
Of The Best Guard Dogs For Families
It’s worth checking with your vet or trainer about what behaviors to expect to see, explains Dr. Mahaney. Fence running, for example, may seem like a good offense against trespassers, but it can become an obsessive habit that leads to fence chewing or excessive barking, which can lead to health problems.
Not to mention, training is a huge part of any dog’s performance and personality. Especially when it comes to larger dogs, Dr. Mahaney recommends working with a trainer on the behaviors he expects to see, as well as obedience, which is crucial when your dog is half his size and on the prowl. .
Boxers can be super affectionate and are very loyal according to the American Kennel Club. And their high levels of intelligence combined with their loyalty means that with some training, a Boxer can be an excellent watchdog.
Akitas are also known to be deeply loyal dogs. They are large dogs (over 100 pounds) and born protectors.
Best Family Guard Dogs: 7 Top Breeds
Staffordshire Bull Terriers are known for being courageous and tenacious, according to the AKC. They are super muscular and could definitely intimidate anyone not welcome in your home.
The Chow Chow is a muscular and stocky breed whose history dates back to ancient China. Once companions to Chinese nobles, the breed eventually earned a reputation for guarding and hunting, making them an excellent watchdog to consider today. They tend to be aloof and antisocial, except to those closest to them, so if you’re looking for a crowd-pleaser, this might not be the pet for you.
Another dog that is affectionate with his family but not interested in strangers is the Shar-Pei. At home, they are quite calm and quiet. But if something is wrong, you can bet the Shar-Pei will want to investigate. Due to their loyal defect temperament, they need careful and early training to be properly socialized and behave well in the company of non-family members.
One of the most recognizable ranch dogs, Australian Shepherds are good at herding. These smart dogs want to corral everything they can, including your family. This habit makes them super protective and also very observant, both critical traits in a great watchdog. But their backgrounds also mean they need a lot of mental and physical activity to keep them from misbehaving.
Best Dog Breeds
If your “home” happens to be more of a farm, you couldn’t ask for a better protector than a Border Collie. Fueled by regular activity and wide open spaces, the Border Collie has long been used by sheep farmers as an excellent herder. Their savvy intelligence makes them excellent training dogs, so you can instill the behaviors you need in a watchdog, and not the ones you don’t.
Part of the Bernese Mountain Dog’s appeal is just its sheer size—this pup can weigh up to 115 pounds. They love their family deeply and are usually a gentle giant, although it takes them a while to warm to strangers and they often bark to warn them off. This can make him a better watchdog than a guard dog, unless he is specifically trained to know what to do in the event of an intruder.
Beyond his undeniably intimidating appearance, the Doberman Pinscher also has an excellent temperament to protect himself. They are loyal, hyper alert and fear nothing. All the characteristics that make him an excellent watchdog have also given him a bad reputation as dangerous. Owners must be diligent about training so that their puppies only represent the best qualities of the breed when in the neighborhood.
Perhaps one of the first breeds that comes to mind when you think of “watchdog,” the German Shepherd has an excellent reputation for good reason. Affectionate, intelligent and courageous, this is a perfect dog for both families and police officers. Just make sure you’re working on obedience too, so you can effectively command your pet if he guards unnecessarily.
Pyrenean Mountain Dog
Originally a cross between a Bulldog and a Mastiff and bred to hunt poachers in the late 1800s, the Bullmastiff is equal parts laid-back homebody and shrewd worker when he’s on the job. Intelligent, confident, and alert, the American Kennel Club (AKC) calls the breed a “world-class guard.” Due to their size (they can reach 130 pounds), these dogs must be trained young, while they are still small enough to handle.
Once used to track lions in Africa, the Rhodesian Ridgeback is now a happy family dog, except for its fierce independent streak and chase instinct. But their long history of working for humans and protecting homes makes them obedient, loyal, and ready to take on anyone who interferes with their pack. However, it is best for experienced dog owners, as their stubbornness requires extra attention in training.
The Rottweiler is everything you could want in a great guardian: alert, aloof with strangers, and happy to serve humans. They were even some of the first guide dogs for the blind, according to the AKC. But what makes the Rottweiler even better is that when they’re not on duty, they’re goofy, playful, fun-loving dogs who don’t take the world too seriously.
Colleen is a health and travel writer in Seattle, Washington. Her work has been featured in Outside, SELF, The Seattle Times, Brit + Co and others. Find her at colleenstinchcombe.com.
Best Large Dog Breeds For Families
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Guard dogs will bark or alert their people to perceived intruders, but will not usually attack. Guide dogs have a protective instinct for their families, honed over hundreds of years, says Gina DiNao, executive secretary of the American Kennel Club (AKC), and they will bite or defend themselves against threats. The best gua dog breeds display bravery and good looks too, with an intimidating size and appearance, perhaps even belonging to one of the giant dog breeds. They can also be classified among the most intelligent or most loyal breeds.
Best Large Dog Breeds — Top Big Dogs List For Families
If you are looking for a dog for protection, the same dog ownership rules apply. You want to give this dog the love and affection you would give any pet, and never, ever keep him chained up or locked in a basement or anymore. Even the most ferocious of dog breeds are still vulnerable living beings that depend on humans for everything, including food, shelter, and trusted companionship. These are some great examples of guard dogs that will be the loving and watchful eyes and ears in your home.
The “king of terriers,” the Airedale is friendly and exuberant, sometimes seeming to have no “off” switch, according to VetStreet.com. But Airedales are great with kids, are quick learners, and are also generally believed to be hypoallergenic, making them one of the best water dogs for families. During World War I, the breed earned a reputation for bravery and focus, thanks to the dogs’ roles as sentinels and messengers, notes the AKC. If they sense a threat, Airedales will bark relentlessly and use their powerful jaws if necessary, but they are ready to love anyone the family accepts. However, Airedales do not like to be left alone and if bored they may resort to chewing and digging. They can also be aggressive towards other animals, and even play too rough with their family, unless otherwise trained. With their bulging chins and folded ears, Airedales have won the Westminster Dog Show four times, although the last time was in 1933.
The Tibetan Mastiff, bred in