Man’s best friend. The beast at the threshold. A member of the family. A family dog can be a very effective addition when seeking to secure your home and loved ones.
But which dog breeds are most effective at helping to keep burglars at bay? At Your Local Security, we took Certapet’s recent picks for top guard dogs and input those breeds into Google trend data to discover the most favored protective canines in America. Take a sniff at our list of the most popular guard dog breeds in each state.
With roots as guard dogs for Japanese royalty, the Akita breed has a strong and powerful stance with a large head and alert eyes, making it appear ready for anything. Affectionate with family members but aloof with newcomers, the Akita makes for a dependable companion and effective family guard dog.
-> Most popular in: Arizona, Hawaii
American Pit Bull Terrier
While Pit Bulls have been given unfair side glances for years for being subjected to illegal training as fighters, this is not their natural disposition. Friendly, submissive, and cuddly with their “pack,” this athletic breed makes for fantastic family pets and guard dogs with their visibly strong jaws and deep, loud barks.
-> Most popular in: Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, South Carolina
American Staffordshire Terrier
Like the Pit Bull, the American Staffordshire Terrier was once bred for dog fighting, but aggressive tendencies have since been bred away. Though friendly and affectionate to its people, this breed’s secure demeanor, muscular build, and buoyant stride still make it an imposing presence to an outsider.
-> Most popular in: Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia
These intelligent, attentive, curious herding dogs are full of energy and eager to work. Belgian Tervurens possess a confident personality and a dense fur coat, making them perfect for actively protecting homes with big yards in even the most frigid winter climates.
-> Most popular in: Indiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, Oregon, Washington
Originally bred as a property-guarding dog in South Africa, the Boerboel is a self confident, athletic, reliable breed with a brave disposition and intuitive protectiveness over what it regards as its territory. The Boerboel makes for a fantastic home protector.
-> Most popular in: District of Columbia, Maryland, North Carolina
This energetic, athletic breed is playful and lighthearted with family but can be a daunting presence to outsiders with its bounding gait and muscular frame. When given sufficient exercise and training, Boxers make for faithful, fun, and active guardians.
-> Most popular in: Kentucky, New Jersey, Pennsylvania
Equipped with a large, muscular build, intent eyes, and sizable head and neck, this Italian property-guarding breed displays an assured, dominant air sure to garner alarm in a potential burglar. Their reserve toward outsiders combined with affection for their owners makes the Cane Corso well suited for the job of guarding your residence.
-> Most popular in: Delaware, Ohio
Don’t let the poofy fur fool you. This dog is bred to guard livestock, so it is ready to stand in the way of anything that threatens what it sees as its own to protect, including its family. A nimble mover and distrusting of visitors, the Caucasian Shepherd is a great pick to help keep an eye on your property.
-> Most popular in: Wyoming
With the help of several Hollywood hits, this breed has reputation for not wavering in the face of danger. Dobermans don’t stop at just looking tough either—they can display a powerful force of attack when provoked, making them one of the most formidable options for a guard dog.
-> Most popular in: Georgia, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, Tennessee, Texas
Unlikely to approach gleefully when seeing an approaching person, the Fila Brasileiro breed is instinctively cautious with visitors. They need to know that a person is safe before forging a bond, giving them a natural aptitude for helping to keep a home safe.
-> Most popular in: Alaska
It’s no coincidence that police forces across the nation often choose this naturally protective breed as their go-to canine compatriots. Fiercely loyal, hard-working, and highly trainable, German Shepherds are gentle around those they love with a healthy dose of caution around strangers.
-> Most popular in: South Dakota, West Virginia
A working breed, the Giant Schnauzer is true to its name. This very large dog is alert, aware, muscular, and athletic. As long as it gets plenty of exercise, the Giant Schnauzer can make an excellent, protective addition to any family home.
-> Most popular in: Oklahoma, Utah
This breed’s sheer size is sure to illicit intimidation even in those well acquainted with canines. Carrying a noble and dignified appearance, the Great Dane is as grand in size as it is in devotion. This blend of traits makes it a wonderful guard dog for families with young children.
-> Most popular in: Wisconsin
Naturally serene and even tempered, Great Pyrenees dogs have a statuesque appearance with a thick, soft white coat. Bred for guarding sheep and packing a large bark in their even larger frame, they are sure to cause a jolt of surprise in a potential burglar.
-> Most popular in: North Dakota
Great Swiss Mountain Dog
Built for the towering mountains of Switzerland, this beautifully tri-colored breed is tough, strong, and agile. Relaxed in a home environment but enjoying good working exercise outside, the “Swissy” makes an excellent family guard dog.
-> Most popular in: Montana, New Hampshire
Born with unusual cord-like strands of fur that extend to the ground, the Komondor was bred to protect and blend in with sheep. The Komondor’s inclination to be wary of those it doesn’t know but friendly with its pack gives it an ideal guard dog temperament.
-> Most popular in: Idaho, Iowa
This independent, courageous breed will not shy away from employing offensive measures toward anything that threatens its property or loved ones, including potential criminals. Bred for hundreds of years to guard livestock, the Kuvasz is well suited to guard your family.
-> Most popular in: Kansas, Minnesota
Created in Russia to help stave off crime, the Moscow Watchdog is a mix of breeds, including a Saint Bernard and Caucasian Shepherd. It instinctually protects, herds, and serves while maintaining a loving disposition toward family, making it an excellent option to be a guard dog over your home.
-> Most popular in: California
Distinguishable by a “ridge” of backward-facing fur along its back, the Rhodesian Ridgeback was bred to hunt lions and is built to protect. This dog’s combination of being great with kids but reserved with outsiders makes it an ideal candidate for helping to theft-proof your home.
-> Most popular in: Colorado
Not many burglars would stay long when confronted by a Rottweiler. This powerful, sturdy breed is not immediately trusting of strangers and has been known to bite when openly threatened. With proper love and training as a puppy, Rottweilers are affectionate with their families and receptive to instruction, perfect for helping to keep your home from becoming a target for criminals.
-> Most popular in: New Mexico, New York
Some of the best family guard dogs tend to be substantial in size, loyal to loved ones, and reserved with strangers. As we can see, there are plenty of breeds to choose from that possess these valuable qualities. For more info on how to choose the best guard dog for your family, check out our Guard Dog Resource Guide.
Of course, a home security system is your best bet for safeguarding your family and property from a potential break in. With a selection of ADT-monitored home security packages, you’re sure to find an option to help safeguard your home—with or without a fluffy guardian in the backyard.
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