A common question we get is, “Are Rottweilers good guard dogs,” and the answer is absolutely yes. This article will take a look at why that is. This article talks about the build, temperament, and innate traits of the Rottweiler breed that make it a great choice to be a guard dog.
Are Rottweilers Good Guard Dogs?
Rottweilers are dogs of the naturally protective sort. They have a desire built right in to keep their families safe. A rottweiler that is socialized properly from puppyhood and trained to keep you safe will act neutral toward strangers but spring into action when you need it.
What Makes Rottweilers Good Guard Dogs?
Curious about what makes a rottweiler an excellent guard dog? Let’s find out now.
They Have a Great Personality
Rottweilers are sometimes wrongfully labeled as being aggressive, mean, or otherwise scary to some people. This is because they were not raised correctly and given ample socialization opportunities or trained correctly. The Rottweiler is a dog that is loyal, strong, and hardworking, and a bit of a homebody, making them perfect for being guard dogs.
(Check out the best companion dogs for rottweilers.)
They’re Easy for Large Dogs
A rottweiler is one of those breeds that is very large in stature. They are easy to keep at your home compared to other dog breeds. They require a lot of exercise, and they need to stay active in order to avoid becoming obese. Frequent walks and feeding on a regular schedule will help your dog stay in good shape for guarding and good health.
You Don’t Need to Groom Heavily
All dogs need grooming and brushing, but given that the Rottweiler has a short coat, it is not necessary to brush every day or every other day. You will still deal with shedding and the like, but with a rottie, it is much less pronounced. It means you can focus more on training instead of grooming.
(Find out more about rottweiler shedding.)
They’re Great for Families
Rottweilers need LOTS of socialization. If you have a family, it’s perfect- bring them to a dog-friendly park or beach, or to a place where dogs are welcome that your family frequents (like an outdoor ice cream stand). It gets your dog socialized but also gives the rottweiler a chance to help keep you safe and gives him a chance to be around strangers who do not pose a threat.
They Like to Work
A rottweiler is hard-wired to be a hard worker. Make sure that you let your dog work hard and play hard. Training of your pup should begin right away- these dogs are smart, and they want to learn and impress you thanks to their fierce loyalty.
Rottweilers are VERY Protective of Kids
Make sure your Rottweiler is exposed to children and babies at a very young age, as well as other dogs. These dogs are the most courageous pets you will ever meet, and they are protective of the children in their family as well as their own puppies. Make sure that if your rottweiler is playing with kids, you supervise the dog closely.
Did you know that rottweilers are extremely loyal dogs as well!
Be Wary of Aggression
Rottweilers are great, but prospective pet parents should know what they are getting before they adopt. These dogs are dangerous if not socialized, trained, and loved properly. If these dogs detect an emotion or feeling they don’t like in somebody they love, they act on their impulses and spring into action, which can lead to negative consequences.
As a result, these dogs should be trained early and often, with socialization reinforced constantly.
(Have you ever wondered how hard your rottweiler is to train?)
Signs of Aggression
The rottweiler shows his or her aggression, much like other dogs- look for showing of the teeth, and constant barking. The body language of the rottweiler is also easy to detect, and you will notice back legs that are hunched plus a lowered body. Some rotties, especially those from tough home situations or who have faced abuse in the past, may display signs of aggression toward male or female humans.
Dog owners should be wary of what makes their Rottie aggressive and work to help them tone it down when not appropriate.
(If you haven’t got a dog yet, then you may be interested to know whether german shepherds make good guard dogs.)
Are Male or Female Rottweilers Better Guard Dogs?
Just like there are differences between human males and females, the same goes for rottweilers, too. Which one is right for you? Let’s talk about it here to further our understanding of the query, are rottweilers good guard dogs.
Males tend to be a little more mischievous and playful than females. They can be a bit more happy-go-lucky and boisterous. They take a bit longer to mature than their female counterparts.
The female becomes aware of herself as she grows into herself. The female makes a good guard dog but given that they can be rather docile in nature even for their breed is something to consider. Female rotties are a bit more trusting than males.
The Winner: Males
Male rottweilers do tend to be more protective, so in this case, it may be better to adopt a male if you plan on keeping them for guarding and companionship. The difference in protectiveness is arguably the most noticeable difference between the two genders. However, every dog is different, and it is very possible to find a very protective female.
(Have you ever wondered how good rottweilers are with other dogs?)
How to Train Your Rottweiler To Be A Guard Dog?
Yes, you can have a dog that guards your house but is also friendly toward people coming over. A properly trained rottie will be neutral toward people who do not pose a threat. These tips and ideas listed below are ways to help your rottweiler become a great guard dog. Practice, patience, and rewards for a job well done are critical to making this work.
Begin with the Basics
Whether you train your dog yourself in the backyard or you take them to obedience classes, your rottweiler should be trained from puppyhood basic obedience skills. Doing it in the backyard is ideal, as the dog will come to know this as his own space and become territorial over it. You should teach your dog how to bark when commanded, plus basic commands like sit, come and stay.
Teach Him Boundaries
In this sense, we are referring to physical property boundaries. At the end of your training each day, you and your rottweiler should run along the property lines or go for a walk along that area. It helps your dog understand where he lives, where he should be guarding, and also gives the animal a chance to get some exercise.
Work on Impulse Control
Rottweilers and other dogs have been known to act on impulse. If you have a stranger or family member come over, they should be taught to act appropriately if the stranger does not pose a threat. Make sure your dog is able to lie down, sit, stay and act neutral toward the person who has entered your home; after all, the rottie is a breed that is apt to jump on others in an attempt to get them to play.
Give Him the Chance to Shine
Your rottweiler is very smart and wants to show you what he’s learned. Leave your pet alone in the area of the house you’d like them to keep watch over. At about the age of 8 months, which is when most dogs gain their confidence and are adequately trained, they can be left alone and trained to guard the house.
Test Them Out
You can see how your dog fares at his task by having someone come to the area he is guarding and test his reaction. Suppose your dog is guarding the backyard. You can have someone knock on the back fence to see his reaction.
You can have someone knock on the window if they are tasked with guarding the house. (These should be people your dog is not familiar with, a person they already know the scent and appearance of will not be helpful). Now, watch for the reaction of the dog.
If your dog barked and made noise about seeing the unfamiliar person, this is a good sign. The person doing the knocking should then make a noise indicating they are scared or frightened and then runoff. Make sure you give your dog a treat for good behavior- after all, they did their job!
This Takes Practice
In some cases, your rottweiler will approach the stranger with a wagging tail and a tongue hanging out, or they may not react at all. Bear in mind that you have to work with your dog every day and keep on trying at this. Make sure to offer treats and praise every time they do a job well done.
Advance the Training
Did your dog do well at reacting to the “stranger”? If so, you can take it to the next level. Have the “stranger do something that is a bit of a distraction. Sit a good distance away when bringing in these distractions. Offer a treat, and when your dog goes to sniff at or eat the treat, command him to “leave it.”
It is a tough skill to learn, but with constant practice, your dog will eventually learn to ignore the treat, slice of meat, bone, toy, or whatever else they like in favor of guarding the house. It is a high-level skill, and you should be ready to offer plenty of praise and treats. It’s another reason we say yes when asked do rottweilers make good guard dogs.
Every Dog Is Different
You will need to be patient and caring with your rottweiler, as not every single rottie will guard naturally. Yes, loyalty is in their blood, but just like humans, every single one of them is different. Understand that while your dog will likely naturally take on their guarding tasks, you may need to work extra hard with them in order to get the results you want.
Understand Your Location
If you live near a place where strangers always go- such as a store, workplace, or school- you may wish to consider other methods of security. If your dog can see the many different strangers going in and out constantly, they will bark all the time, and this is not healthy for your dog or your neighbors.
Understand the Risk
Having a guard dog is a great thing; there’s no doubt about that. However, if your rottweiler ends up biting the wrong person, there’s a good chance that legal trouble may be on the horizon for you. Stories are everywhere about aggressive breeds having to be put down because they bit somebody they shouldn’t have, or because they attacked a person who meant no harm.
What Are the Consequences?
For example, in the state of California, euthanasia is required if the dog has bitten at least two people, has rabies, or if the dog has been raised to fight or attack humans. If the dog has seriously injured another, that is also cause for euthanization. Another negative consequence could be a lawsuit that comes your way as a result of your dog biting another person.
In summary, the question of Are Rottweilers good guard dogs? It is pretty easy to answer: the end result is a resounding “yes.”
The key things to remember are:
- Socialize your rottweiler early and often
- Get them to learn basic obedience right away
- Male rottweilers are better suited for the task of guarding than females in most cases
- Watch for signs of aggression in your dog so you can appropriately address them
- Make sure you are diligent in your training and work on it every day to keep your dog sharp, and offer treats as well as praise when they do a good job
Always make sure your dog is closely supervised when around others- never leave your dog unattended with other humans or dogs. It will help keep accidents or injuries to a minimum.
Enjoy training and teaching your rottweiler to guard and protect!