The decision to invite a pet into the home is a big one that families should consider carefully before influencing the life of any animal. The decision to add an animal to the household for protection purposes is far more complicated still. While it may seem ideal to have a vicious guard dog on the premises to ward away potential intruders, the day to day reality for most families is that the dog will likely never see action, but you and your family members will interact with the animal on a daily basis for 10-20 years. Many dog breeds are great for home security, but don’t excel when it comes to playing with children, or becoming loving members of the household. For this reason, all potential dog owners should consider the options in what to look for in a guard dog.
First of all, what most people really want but don’t realize is that they really are after a ‘watch dog’, and not so much a guard dog per say. A watch dog is any dog that works as a home alarm system to alter the family that an intruder is approaching the home. In most cases a watch dog works just fine to deter burglars from attempting a break in, especially after you have switched on the lights to investigate. Those who break into residential homes do not want to get caught, they want exactly the opposite: a quick and easy way to score a big payday. When a dog sounds ‘the alarm’ this opportunity has already ended for all but the most determined of intruders.
In addition to being just as utilitarian in the barking department as a guard dog, watch dogs tend to make better all-around family members. These dogs are usually smaller, more attentive, and can be as cute, cuddly and playful as the family likes. Some excellent examples of watch dogs that will be sure to bark up a storm should any stranger approach your residence include Scottish Terriers, Yorkshire Terriers, Poodles, Dachshunds, Miniature Pinschers, and Boston Terriers. These dogs are manageable, easy to live with, and helpful for home security.
For those still convinced that a guard dog is the way to go, it’s time to look for a dog that is strong, aggressive, trainable, and above all loyal. A dog that will attack anything is just as much a danger to you and your family, if not more, than to any robber. Some of the most common breeds of guard dogs are Doberman Pinscher, Rottweiler, German Shepherd, and Bull Mastiff. All of these dogs are likely to not only intimidate any would-be intruder, but actually attack in the event the person gains entry to the home. If deciding to go with such a guard dog, do lots of research into the breed you are drawn to.
Visit some real dogs, and speak with a trainer before even considering bringing a pet home. Above all else, budget in time and money to invest in attending rigorous training programs with your dog so that you can have peace of mind all the time around your new home security enhancing pet.