We adopt dogs for many reasons: we may want companionship, a jogging partner, or someone else to take care of; we may be looking to save a life and maybe foster a dog. Some future owners, on top of all that, may also be looking for a dog for personal protection – a loyal companion to walk with at night, or guard the house.
Adopting a dog for your own protection or your home is not uncommon, but it’s also not that simple. Because of people’s tendency to adopt a specific type of stronger and genetically more aggressive breeds, these dogs can sometimes be a danger to themselves, other humans and animals if they aren’t raised, trained and socialized properly.
It’s particularly important to careful about the adoption and training process for someone who may not handle a big, strong, potentially aggressive dog. For example, if you’re a woman of small complexion looking to get a canine companion for personal protection, prepare yourself well in advance, know what to expect and be sure you can handle the dog with verbal commands alone.
ALSO READ: 14 Best Watch and Guard Dog Breeds
A Dog for Personal Protection
6 Things You Must Consider First
1. Who Really Needs a Guard Dog?
While literally anyone can keep a guard dog of their own, there are some owners who may have a serious case for considering a dog for personal protection. For example, those living in bad neighborhoods, away from quick police response and generally afraid to being unable to protect themselves.
People who are blind or deaf are more likely to fall victim to intruders too. A person who is blind may have a heightened sense of hearing, and might be able to tell if someone enters their home but there’s no way of knowing if the individual has a weapon, or how close they might be in proximity. A guard dog is not only able to warn you with a bark or a growl, but they’re also able to defend you should the burglar make a move.
2. You Must Be in Control At All Times
Have you ever seen a news video of a cop pursuing a suspect with a K-9 police dog, and the K-9 finally catches up? Here’s one. In most such cases, this is the point where the suspect either gives in out of fear, or – as in the video – ends up with an arm locked in the jaws of a German Shepherd. As you can see, if the dog is trained properly, he’ll let go upon command.
Sometimes, this is what might be expected from your “canine guardian.” But, because it’s unlikely it’ll be a police-like trained dog, there have been instances where the protective dog does not let go of the arm or the leg, staying locked in and even mauling it, severely injuring the person. An incident like this could lead to charges filed, along with the euthanization of the dog on the grounds that they are a threat to others, which isn’t necessarily inaccurate if the animal does not follow commands at all times.
Before you even consider getting a dog for personal protection, make sure you’re ready to be…