Dogs are often referred to as man’s best friend but their uses expand considerably further. Many owners consider their pets as protection units; either for property or family. It is a very specific type of role and suitable only to certain breeds.
The most suitable canines for the job…
There are two clear aspects to consider; namely the size and general physical appearance of the dog and the breed’s ability to learn and be trained to complete certain duties.
German shepherds make great guard and protection dogs. Easy to train and fearless they are suitable to protect families and homes alike.
Similarly, Rottweilers despite having a fairly robust reputation are excellent family protection dogs. Big and powerful they have an instinct to look after you.
Both these breeds, along with Dobermans, Staffordshire Terriers and Giant Schnauzer can be easily trained to warn off and alert of potential danger. It is not solely about size and bearing of teeth, agility and the skill of remaining focused for long periods make the best guard dogs.
The Actual Training – Tips
There are a number of training methods but most of what is required is instinct. It can be useful to reward with treats if your dog barks at someone approaching the house but equally rewards should be given for identifying there is no danger.
Like any simple training, make sure the dog knows they are doing well. Before attempting guard dog training make sure the dog is appropriately trained and socialised in basic skills so they understand appropriate behaviour.
Train your canine to react to certain noises; this can be done with association for example an opening gate means they could be going out. It promotes reaction to this noise each time and forms alertness.
It is important to remember that your dog is part of the family so do not blur the lines of guard and friend. We advise seeking professional training and learning with your dog each step of the way.