Top 10 Farm Dog Breeds

Kate Barrington
by Kate Barrington
Old MacDonald had a farm… and on his farm he had a dog! And we bet it was one from our list of the top 10 farm dog breeds.

Every dog breed is unique, with characteristics that sets it apart from the rest. On top of physical characteristics that make each dog breed different, some breeds were developed to fill a specific role – this is the case for farm dogs. Though they may have originally been bred to guard and herd sheep, modern farm dogs are highly versatile. In addition to playing their roles on the farm, they also act as companion pets for the family.

If you’re looking for a dog breed that would fit well on your farm, you have plenty of options to choose from. There are some breeds, however, that fill the role of farm dog particularly well. Keep reading to learn what they are.

Top 10 Farm Dog Breeds

A farm dog needs to be smart and trainable. Not only do they need to learn and respond to basic commands, but they are often trained to perform specific roles that vary from one farm to another. Many farm dogs have natural herding or guarding instincts but might also help with pest control and other tasks on the farm.

Here are the top 10 best farm dog breeds:

Anatolian Shepherd

A sturdy and rugged breed, the Anatolian Shepherd has strong senses of sight and hearing and an instinct for protection. Though they are large and muscular, they can be quick and agile when needed. (Shutterstock: rebeccaashworth)

Great Pyrenees

Named for the mountainous region where it was developed, the Great Pyrenees has a thick weather-resistant coat and strong guarding instincts. These dogs are typically used as livestock guardians but are also patient and gentle with people. (Shutterstock: Amanda Leek)


A Hungarian breed known for its corded coat, the Komondor blends in with a herd of sheep, making it an unseen protector. Though large, these dogs have short legs which helps with agility and they are very intelligent. (Shutterstock: volofin )

Maremma Sheepdog

An Italian breed with a muscular build, the Maremma Sheepdog is big and intimidating on the outside but gentle on the inside. These dogs protect both humans and livestock and their thick coat protects them in all kinds of weather. (Shutterstock: Ricantimages)

Australian Cattle Dog

If you’re looking for a dog with a head for work that isn’t reliant on human affection to do his job, this is the breed for you. Australian Cattle Dogs are great for herding with a cautious demeanor that makes them a good choice for watching the home. (Shutterstock: Best dog photo)

German Shepherd

Easily one of the most intelligent and trainable dog breeds out there, the German Shepherd makes a great farm dog because it is highly versatile. (Shutterstock: Runa Kazakova)

Border Collie

Known for their herding skills, Border Collies are the ultimate farm dog. These dogs have excellent stamina and a strong work ethic – they are also one of the most intelligent dog breeds out there and they are not high-maintenance like some breeds. (Shutterstock: xkunclova)

Welsh Corgi

When you think of farm dogs, you probably picture bigger breeds but the short-legged Welsh Corgi is one to consider. This breed is highly intelligent and determined. Though they may be small, they are masters at herding cattle. (Shutterstock: Vera Reva)

Jack Russell Terrier

Known for its quickness and agility, the Jack Russell Terrier is excellent for pest control. Keep in mind, however, that they can be independent and head strong at times. (Shutterstock: Ammit Jack)

Rat Terrier

As the name implies, the Rat Terrier is great for catching rats. This breed is small in size but tough and fearless in personality, not to mention naturally active. (Shutterstock: Nick Chase 68)

Whether you’re looking for a dog to guard your livestock or keep your barn free from rats, a farm dog is the perfect fit. Take what you’ve learned here about the top 10 farm dog breeds to choose the one that is the best fit for your farm and for your needs.

Kate Barrington
Kate Barrington

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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