Many dog breeds have a specific job they were bred for. The best guard dog breeds were bred with stock, property and personal protection in mind. Some guard dog breeds are well-known, while others are just coming to the awareness of the general public.
The German Shepherd is one of the most popular and recognized guard dogs in the world. These versatile dogs are used to herd stock, lead the blind and for personal and property protection. German shepherds are extremely loyal, and they have a natural instinct to protect their owners from harm. The German shepherd as a guard dog has one drawback. Many of these dogs are from poor breeding. There is a high incidence of hip dysplasia in the breed. Only purchase a GSD from a very reputable breeder.
The Bullmastiff is the result of a cross between the bulldog and the English Mastiff. This breed was originally used as a gamekeeper’s dog on large estates. Their mission was to protect the estate’s game from poachers. The Bullmastiff was to find a poacher, chase and knock him down and then hold him until the gamekeeper could arrive. These dogs make excellent property guardians. They require firm discipline to curb any attempt to dominate the owner.
The Belgian Malinois is a type of shepherd dog that is slightly smaller than a German Shepherd. These dogs are becoming the breed of choice for many police departments in the United States. The United States military is using these dogs extensively in Afghanistan to sniff out IEDs and weapons caches. These are high-energy dogs that require a great deal of exercise. The disadvantage of this breed for guarding work is their size. They do not have the knockdown power of some of the larger breeds.
The Rottweiler is an impressive dog that has obtained a reputation for high aggression in recent years mostly due to poor breeding. A well-bred Rottweiler is one of the best property guardians available. They have a possessive nature for what they claim as theirs. This includes their owner and their owner’s family.
The Beauceron is a French shepherd that is distinguished by its set of double dew claws. These dogs were used by the French military as messenger dogs, guard dogs and as mine detection dogs. Today, the Beauceron is often seen in protection dog competitions. Some particularly nasty Beauceron’s can be seen in the James Bond film “Moonraker”.
Karl Dobermann was a German tax collector who wanted a breed of dog that would protect him while he performed his tax collection duties. Mr. Dobermann crossed the Thuringian Pinscher, the Beauceron and the Rottweiler to create the breed we know today as the Doberman Pinscher. These dogs are usually seen in their black and tan coloration, but red, fawn and blue Dobermans are not uncommon. If choosing a Doberman for guard dog work, be aware that Dobermans are not as aggressive as they once were. Breeders have been working toward a calmer and more stable dog.
Image c/o Vladimer Shioshvili
Eric Blair is an animal lover and avid pet blogger. Eric feeds his pets NuVet to ensure they live a long and healthy life; you can read NuVet Reviews to find out more.