Top 10 Best Watch Dogs
When it comes to choosing the right dog for your family there are a variety of factors to consider. Some families choose their pets based on their temperament, their patience with children, or even their size. For many families, however, the dog’s ability to watch over the family and property is an important deciding factor. Based on a breed’s overall natural instincts and what that dog was original bred to do, here are our picks for Top 10 Best Watch Dogs. (Photo credit: Steve Costa/Flickr)
Rottweiler: Bred to protect herds of cattle from predators, the Rottweiler is a natural-born watch dog. These dogs are large and powerful but they are also intelligent and highly loyal to their families. The Rottweiler tends to be aloof around strangers so they will not hesitate to raise the alarm if someone unfamiliar approaches the house. However, your dog’s barking should stop right away if he realizes that there isn’t really anything to worry about. A well-trained Rottweiler will even be alert while going on a walk, but he should not act out in an uncontrolled or unpredictable manner. Overall, this is a great breed to go with if you are searching for a dog that will be happy to protect you and your family. (Photo credit: Toloubaev Stanislav/Shutterstock)
Giant Schnauzer: The Giant Schnauzer is a large, powerful and dominant breed that can be intimidating at times. This breed requires a lot of mental and physical stimulation as well as strict training but they are naturally loyal which makes them one of the best watch dogs around. Anyone who is looking for a dog that will provide both protection and companionship should definitely consider the Giant Schnauzer. After all, this breed has a history of serving as a guard dog. Suspicious of people they don’t know, they are also smart, but they do require owners that will be able to give them the active lifestyle that they need. Plenty of positive activity, along with proper socialization and training, are necessary to keep these dogs happy. But the work is all worth it because the Giant Schnauzer will not disappoint. (Photo credit: Erik Lam/Shutterstock)
German Shepherd: The German Shepherd breed is intelligent, and its quick-to-learn attitude makes it a great choice for police and military applications. These same qualities make the breed a great choice for a watch dog. German Shepherds are calm and loyal with family but they are quick to react if a dangerous situation arises. The key is to train these dogs properly so that they can become the ideal watch dogs. First off, you need to socialize these dogs well while they are puppies. You don’t want your German Shepherd to be fearful, and you want him to be able to recognize what’s normal versus what’s out of the ordinary so he can recognize danger quickly. Obedience classes can be helpful with these dogs, and you should teach your pooch to stop barking when you command him to do so. These dogs can be taught to bark at the appearance of strangers, so having enough control to tell your pooch to quiet down is also important. In the end, with the right combination of socialization and training, the German Shepherd is a fantastic choice for anyone in search of a watch dog. (Photo credit: Eric Isselee/Shutterstock)
Staffordshire Bull Terrier: The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was originally bred for bear and bull fighting, so it is a tough and hardy breed. These dogs can naturally be little aggressive so they make great watch dogs, but they do require a great deal of socialization to keep them from being aggressive with other dogs. This breed is typically loyal with family and not aggressive in household situations.
Doberman Pinscher: The Doberman Pinscher is the quintessential watch dog breed – these are the dogs you see guarding property, especially in TV and movie depictions. Doberman Pinschers are naturally protective and have a great instinct for guarding. These dogs are also incredibly intelligent and fast so, if a situation arises, they are capable of quick action. Make sure you have the room in your home for these medium to large sized canines, who also require plenty of exercise. When properly trained, these dogs will be loyal to their family, and they will showcase their strong will and strength, as well as fearlessness. Even when they are challenged, they will be brave and do what it takes to keep you safe. (Photo credit: WilleeCole/Shutterstock)
Bullmastiff: Not only does the Bullmastiff look intimidating, but this breed is highly loyal and protective of its family. This breed is incredibly strong and won’t hesitate to act as a physical barrier between his family and an intruder. In a family setting, however, the Bullmastiff is very gentle and makes a wonderful family pet – they are even patient and calm around children. (Photo credit: Eric Isselee/Shutterstock)
Standard Poodle: The Standard Poodle may not be the first breed you think of when you are considering a watch dog, but they are highly intelligent and can be trained for nearly any application. Poodles tend to be a little wary around strangers so they are likely to bark if an unfamiliar person approaches the home. Poodles also tend to bond very closely with their family members so they will not hesitate to react to a threat against those they love. (Photo credit: Eric Isselee/Shutterstock)
Kuvasz: The Kuvasz is a large breed that doesn’t have the most intimidating look, but they are intelligent and incredibly loyal and protective of their families. This breed tends to be aloof around strangers, which makes it a perfect pick for our list of best watch dogs. Plus, the Kuvasz is considered a strong working breed that is also filled with bravery and a natural instinct to protect, especially because they have been bred to guard flocks of sheep. At the same time, these canines are gentle and sweet, and even though they can make good watch dogs, they are also capable of making wonderful therapy dogs as well.
Puli: The Puli is an incredibly intelligent breed that has a natural tendency to be aloof and suspicious around strangers – this makes it a great watch dog. This breed is constantly on the lookout and will bark to alert his owner to anything out of the ordinary. When it comes to their ability to work as watch dogs, these canines are highly recommended because they are loyal and loving, they enjoy being around their family, they are smart, athletic, and agile, and they showcase a strong work ethic. Their focus is to protect those they love, so they will gladly watch over you every day. And, as with any other breed, with proper training and socialization, these dogs will grow up to be confident protectors that won’t be aggressive or shy. (Photo credit: WilleeCole/Shutterstock)
Shih Tzu: With this dog’s small size, you would think of the Shih Tzu as a watch dog… more of a lap dog. But don’t let that cute exterior fool you. The Shih Tzu, which means “little lion,” was revered by members of ancient Chinese royal and favored by monks in Buddhist temple, were they were used to guard the sacred locals. These days, the Shih Tzu is still attuned to changes in the environment, such as strangers or visitors coming close to your home, and will alert you to their presence with a watchful bark. (Photo credit: Nagel Photography/Shutterstock)
Kate Barrington is the loving owner of two cats (Bagel and Munchkin) and a noisy herd of guinea pigs. Having grown up with golden retrievers, Kate has a great deal of experience with dogs but labels herself a lover of all pets. Having received a Bachelor's degree in English, Kate has combined her love for pets and her passion for writing to create her own freelance writing business, specializing in the pet niche.
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