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You likely have multiple reasons to get a dog, with one of them being protection. After all, we originally domesticated dogs to guard our homes. Are bigger pooches the best guard dogs? Or are there certain breeds that we humans bred for this purpose?

The best guard dog for your house is a Doberman. They are intimidating and can definitely hurt would-be thieves. German shepherds and Rottweilers are also excellent options thanks to their loyalty, size, and aggressive nature.

26. Bernese Mountain Dog

With the males weighing 80 to 115 pounds and females weighing 70 to 95 pounds, Bernese Mountain Dogs are certainly intimidating to intruders, something with their ability to reach 27 inches tall or more at the shoulder increases. These are sturdy, agile canines traditionally used for drafting and droving in mountains.

You can recognize Bernese Mountain Dogs by their tricolor moderately long coat and distinctive face and coat markings. This is a guard dog that will do great with the whole family, including being extremely gentle with kids. While it is a great family guard, this breed tends to choose a favorite person.

25. American Leopard Hound

The American Leopard Hound can have a brindle, leopard, or solid pattern and a range of colors, with 60 percent being solid-colored. In addition to being guard dogs, this breed is also popular for hunting a range of game.

American Leopard Hounds will enjoy themselves even in extreme weather. This breed has a dense and smooth double coat, along with nails that are strong and grow quickly. This breed is very energetic, something which helps it perform guard duties.

24. Tibetan Mastiff

The Tibetan Mastiff is a type of mastiff that has a long double coat. This giant dog breed easily intimidates would-be wrongdoers with males measuring at least 26 inches tall and weighing 90 to 150 pounds and females only being two inches shorter and 20 to 30 pounds less.

This type of furry friend always seems alert and is easily described as substantial, massive, powerful, and muscular. To further help them with guard duty, these canines are light-footed and incredibly agile when meeting threats.

23. Beauceron

Beaucerons are known for being obedient, gentle, and faithful. They weigh 70 to 110 pounds and can be up to 27.5 inches tall on average. This type of canine is rugged and muscular with a balanced appearance. This is one of the best guard dogs that you should only get if you are an experienced owner, as the breed can easily dominate its humans.

When trained and socialized properly, Beucerons make level-headed guardians, guards, and watchdogs.

22. Black Russian Terrier

Black Russian Terriers are balanced, agile, powerful, and large. They have well-developed muscles along with large bones, endurance, and strength. These canines tend to be courageous, self-assured, and reliable. They can be as large as 140 pounds and 30 inches tall at their shoulders. Thanks to their warm coat, they can easily guard your home, even if you live in a cold climate.

21. Anatolian Shepherd

Anatolian Shepherds are working guard dogs that were bred for utility with sizable bones and muscles. They can weigh up to 150 pounds and are usually 27 to 29 inches up to the shoulders. This breed is known for being territorial and protective, ideal traits in a guard dog. They are also very loyal, intelligent, and patient, which only adds to their usefulness for protection.

20. Caucasian Shepherd Dog

Caucasian Shepherd Dogs can grow up to an incredibly 170 pounds and were bred for guarding. The breed is fearless, fierce, self-confident, and bold to strangers yet kind and soft to family. This extends to children as well as other pets in the family. This dog has a history of guarding hundreds of years long when it guarded livestock from predators and protected properties. There are two standards of the breed, with the Steppe weighing less and having a shorter coat than the Mountain.

19. Appenzeller Sennenhund

The Appenzeller Sennenhund is medium-sized and commonly used to guard, as well as for working on a farm. The breed is obedient and agile as well as reliable, fearless, and high-spirited. Its slight suspicion of strangers makes it a great watchdog that will not be bribed. They are capable learners as well, thanks to their intelligence.

18. Komondor

The Komondor, also known as the Hungarian Sheepdog or Common Mop or the Mop Dog, is a livestock guard dog known for its corded, lengthy coat. These canines were bred to guard livestock, leading to a temperament that is calm and steady in normal situations but can switch to fearless defense quickly. Komondors are affectionate to their family and warm up to strangers if it is clear they do not mean to cause harm.

17. Kuvasz

The Kuvasz is known for being courageous, fearless, and loyal and comes from Hungary. This is a large working dog, weighing up to 115 pounds. These pooches were bred for hunting with royals or guarding livestock. This breed is gentle with kids but acts quickly and is agile when necessary to protect those in the dog’s family. Kuvaszok (the plural) are also intelligent and good at problem-solving and known for having a sense of humor.

16. Great Pyrenees

The Great Pyrenees is known for this thick white coat and power, especially as a working dog that protected sheep from predators. Today, those temperament traits have adapted the breed into being a guard dog of families and houses while being mellow with its humans. The Great Pyrenees tends to appear calm when not in action but moves quickly and with grace to protect or meet a threat.

15. Puli Dog

The Puli Dog is instantly recognizable for its natural cords that cover it from tail to head. This breed is compact yet powerful and was bred to herd. Despite only weighing up to 35 pounds, this canine is faithful, smart, and agile, helping it immensely in its protective duties. Before you get a Puli, however, keep in mind that its coat requires a lot of time and care.

14. Australian Shepherd

Australian Shepherds are known for being hard workers and ranch dogs, commonly working with rodeos as well. They also do well as guard dogs thanks to their agility and rugged nature. This breed is smart, so make sure you are ready for a canine that may try to trick you. Once you train the pup, he will be ready to guard your home or help you with other doggy-appropriate work.

13. Chow Chow

Chow Chows are muscular canines from ancient China and are known for their aristocratic feel. Despite their power, Chow Chows only reach up to 20 inches at the shoulder. These pups are refined and dignified. One of their best traits for guarding is that they are loyal to their family and aloof with strangers. Another plus is that Chow Chows do well in the city as well as more spacious areas, as they do not need extra exercise.

12. Bouvier des Flandres

Bouvier des Flandres are strong-willed, so don’t get this breed without some consideration. When you do, you will be happy to have an excellent watchdog that can also help you with other all-purpose canine work. This breed intimidates intruders with its barrel-chested and burly nature and weight of up to 110 pounds. It also has powerful muscles and heavy bones, hidden under a waterproof coat to help him guard in all weather.

11. Malinois Dog

The Malinois or Belgian Malinois is a hardworking canine that forms a very close bond with his human, making him a great guard dog. This breed needs to live an active lifestyle and loves working, including guard duty. Just be sure to give your Malinois a job to do, or he may get bored. With exercise and lots of time with you, this breed will be a happy, smart guard dog.

10. Cane Corso

The Cane Corso is a majestic and highly trainable breed that is known for being confident, assertive, and protective. Even the breed’s name hints at its nature as a guard dog, as it is a rough translation from Latin meaning “bodyguard dog.” This is among the older breeds, as ancient Romans counted on it to protect them. Still need more convincing? The Cane Corso frequently weighs over 100 pounds and they are very loyal.

9. Thai Ridgeback

If you want an active, tough, and intelligent guard dog, then look no further than the Thai Ridgeback. This breed is a good family pup and is loyal when socialized properly. This is a guarding breed, meaning that your Thai Ridgeback will naturally be protective of your home, including being suspicious of strangers. These pups also have a high prey drive and strong survival instincts, as their initial purpose of guarding and hunting required self-sufficiency.

8. Great Dane

Great Danes are sometimes called the “Apollo of Dogs” and friendly, dependable, and patient, but require a great deal of commitment. They can weigh up to 175 pounds and reach 32 inches at their shoulders. If your Great Dane stands on its hind legs, he will likely be taller than you. This breed is sweet and good with children, yet alert and intimidating when guarding your home.

7. Akita

Akitas are known for their profound loyalty and dignity and can weigh as much as 130 pounds. These Japanese dogs are muscular and are traditionally known as protectors of the family as well as symbols of a long life and good health. If you choose an Akita, expect a quiet dog that will be wary of strangers and not like other animals but loves spending time with you and your family. Just be sure to socialize your Akita from birth.

6. Giant Schnauzer

Giant Schnauzers are very trainable, something which helps them in their guard duties, as does their weight of up to 85 pounds. This breed will be very loyal to you and have a substantial, muscular body. People bred the Giant Schnauzer as a working dog during the mid-1800s and it was originally bred to help drive cattle and as a guard dog for innkeepers, merchants, and farmers. That legacy continues today and your Giant Schnauzer would gladly serve as your guard pup.

5. Boxer

Boxers have a strong work ethic and are bright, alert, and courageous, all of which contribute to their status as one of the best guard dogs. They can weigh up to 80 pounds and be up to 25 inches to the shoulders. You can see their muscles at a glance and they are protective yet patient. This makes them an excellent guard dog for families with small children.

4. Bullmastiff

The Bullmastiff has a long reputation of being a guard, pursuing poachers in England. This breed is a cross of the Mastiff and the Bulldog. Your Bullmastiff will be docile at home, showing the family affection while being fearless at work, treating invaders like its ancestors treated poachers. It is also intimidating at up to 130 pounds and 27 inches to the shoulder. Just remember that if you want a Bullmastiff guard dog, you need to start socialization and training as a puppy.

3. Rottweiler

Rottweilers are descendants of the mastiffs that fought with Romans, a history that helps them be confident guard dogs. The breed is strong and protective of its family yet is gentle when playing or interacting with family. When you raise a Rottweiler properly, you will get a courageous, calm, and confident canine that is not overly aggressive. During family time, don’t be surprised if your Rottweiler decides it’s a lap dog.

2. German Shepherd

Like how the 46th POTUS took a liking to this breedGerman Shepherds are among the most popular all-purpose working dogs and guard dogs, thanks to their muscles and agility. This breed can grow to 26 inches at its shoulders and can reach high speeds. You can teach these furry friends numerous commands and they will put themselves in harm’s way to protect their loved ones, while still being gentle family pets. Just give your new pup some time to form a bond, as German Shepherds don’t do so instantly.

1. Dobermann

The Dobermann or Doberman Pinscher is a vigilant and fearless breed widely known for its protectiveness and abilities as a guard dog. This breed is compact, powerful, muscular, and fast, standing up to 28 inches and weighing up to 100 pounds. To further deter would-be thieves, the Dobermann is known for being graceful and fast. Train your Dobermann properly from the start and it will be devoted and loving yet protective.

Related Questions

What Is The Most Aggressive Guard Dog? Chihuahuas are known to be the most aggressive dog breed, but you wouldn’t want one for a guard dog. Of those on our list of best guard dogs, the Chow Chow is the most aggressive guard dog, closely followed by the Dobermann. Other highlights include Rottweilers and German Shepherds.

What Dog Breed Has Killed Most Humans? Pit bulls are typically the dogs that kill the most humans each year in the United States, but there are not many deaths from dogs. 2018, for example, had only 36 fatalities from dog bites. If you socialize and train your pooch properly, it is unlikely to kill.

Which Dog Has The Strongest Bite? The dog with the strongest bite is the Kangal, followed by the Bandog, Cane Corso, Tosa Inu, and Dogue de Bordeaux. Of these, only the Cane Corso is also one of the best guard dogs on our list. Other guard dogs with strong bites include the Rottweiler, German Shepherd, Boxer, and Dobermann.

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