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Discussion Starter #1
okay so I need some advice. I currently have a adorable maltipoo Luca Miles who is my world, I also have a cat Gracie. however my roommate and I (2 girls) will be moving in the distant future as of right now we live in our hometown in a apartment that's connected to our landlords house if that make sense. when we move we'll be moving 3 hours away from our families. Luca and Gracie will of course be coming. when we move we've discussed getting a guard dog nothing set in stone just been googling and gathering information. we've narrowed it down to a doberman, bullmastiff, German Shepard, or a rottweiler. I'm just wondering if anyone has any suggestions on what kind of dog will be best suited for our little family or any tips. it doesn't have to be any breed listed. A dog that gets along well with other pets. I just want to ensure that Luca and Gracie will be safe. its always just been the two of them and they are very close. I'd also like tips on introducing another dog. Luca nor Gracie are aggressive by no means. Luca is very aware of his size and wants to be picked up if another dog comes near him. I also am leaning towards getting a female. anyways thanks in advance!
 

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Aré you planing to but a trained dog Or train The dog yourself? I'm in the process of training a guard dog right now. We looked at some of the breeds you mentioned but ended up deciding on the Fila Brasileiro and here is little Leia.



We decided on the breed mostly due to personal reccomendations but there are some characteristics that make them very good guard dogs. They have instinctive guarding behaviors like other LGD, even at three months Leia will sit on her hindlegs where ever she can see the most of her surroundings while keeping an eye on her flock. She is also an indomitable. Even as the little rugrat she is she never seems to back down, her flight or fight seems firmly entrenched in the fight. And of course the hallmark of the breed, what every well bred Fila should exhibit, an extreme distrust and dislike of strangers.

Not to mention her mom tipped the scales at 165lbs so there is a lot of physical intimidation.

As for introducing your dog to the other dogs, just control the interactions but even a large breed like a Rottweiler is still going to by quite tiny as a puppy so don't worry about a big dog little dog issue.
 

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My advice?

Get an alarm/security system if you really want your house to be protected. One that will attempt to notify you of a breech first, and then get the police dispatched ASAP if need be. There are other steps you can take to reduce the chance of an intruder at your new place too. You can install cameras that stream to your phone or ipad. They're not that expensive anymore. A motion sensor that turns a light on can also make a huge difference. You can install security doors.

There are studies out there that show that most robbers or intruders will be deterred at even the sound of a dog barking behind a closed door. They even make alarm systems now that will go off with a recording of a dog barking. Your little dog would probably work just fine if it barks. A lot of robbers won't even enter a yard with even just a medium sized dog if it barks.

I personally think getting a dog for purely for security is questionable, and I would do some long, hard thinking about your expectations and how much time and money you're willing to put into doing this the right way.

The breeds you've listed are big, powerful breeds. All guard and guardian breeds are. They can be dangerous if not handled correctly. And not just to intruders. A good guard dog should NOT be aggressive. A lot of people are misinformed and think that the GSD or rottie that barks it's head off at somebody is being a "good guard dog". It's not. It's being neurotic and reactive, and it's a liability. A good guard dog may be aloof with strangers, but not at all aggressive. It knows how to discern a threat from a non-threat, and it's first move is not to go bite somebody.

If you get a dog for guarding, you have to be VERY careful where you get this dog from because you need one with a genetically stable temperament. It should be from a good breeder that temperament tests and health tests. You also have to socialize the crap out of it. I work at a vet clinic and I can't tell you how many temperamentally unstable rottweilers I've seen. Honestly, the only breed of dog that legit scares me. GSD's can be the same way. Backyard breeding does the breeds absolutely no good.

If you plan on training the dog for personal protection and bite work, then you have even more responsibility on your shoulder. And again, the dog MUST be stable. It can't be a reactive nutjob.

Anyway, that's just my take on the matter. You really have to be willing to do this the right way, or you risk getting a dog that could seriously end up hurting somebody. I also worry about people getting a breed to be a "guard dog" and ultimately not liking the dog. You have to like the dog you get. I'd honestly rather somebody install a security system and get a dog that they're going to enjoy and a breed they like.
 

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Also consider insurance because home owners and renters insurance often will not cover certain breeds.

Also to be quite frank if someone is determined to get into your house, they will get into your house dog or no dog.

I would not want to see an inexperienced person getting one of these breeds. They are temperamentally not anything like a malti-poo and it could quite possibly end up with both you and the dog being miserable.

It is your life and your safety though and I know I feel better having a big dog around so if you do decide to go through with it - please at least start puppy classes right away and continue with obedience classes for as long as you can.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thank you all for your anwsers! yes I will definitely be working with the dog at home and getting it trained elsewhere. the dog wouldn't be just for protection I love animals it would be treated as part off the family as luca and Gracie are. my main concern is the horror stories ive read about the dogs going after the smaller dogs out of nowhere even with good training. also I want to add another pet to the mix and I wanted a bigger dog. I'm also concerned about luca and how he will act he's very much spoiled and all about his "mama" not, sure how he would feel with a new sister.
 

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A dog introduced to the other dogs as a puppy is less likely to go after the other dogs. Usually it's the older dogs who are intolerant of the puppies.
 

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As others have mentioned, the bark is your best weapon here (and a good security system!). Any dog that is actually trained for protection work is going to run you in the thousands for the puppy and the training, and will honestly be far more dog than you'll actually need.

Not only insurance, but keep in mind that police could pose a threat to your dog as well if they show up to a burglary and feel "threatened" by your dog. We had a case recently nearby where a house alarm went off, an officer came by to check it out, the resident dog approached the officer barking, and the dog was as a result shot and killed because the officer felt his life was in danger.

Have you considered dogs that are less intense, but have a good bark? Maybe look into labs or hounds - a deep bark is usually all it takes.
 

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Thirding the suggestion that a dog that barks is as much deterrent as you need. Most dogs bark, so why not go for a breed that you like, instead of one that is expected to guard?

BTW, my BF's dog Tara is a Rottweiler. She barks when people come in the yard, but then she is only too happy to let them in the house and show them where the dog treats are kept ....

My dog, a random street dog from Egypt, also barks when people come into the yard and the house. He'd be more 'threatening', because he'll continue to bark when someone comes in, because he's very fearful and convinced that humans, with the exception of myself and my BF, are up to no good. He's more likely to bite than the Rottie, if he felt threatened enough, but his first choice would be to run away/hide.

So, both dogs are great for making noise and discouraging any potential intruders, and really that's all I need.
 

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Mine is a pit/lab mix. She's very dainty but boy can she bark (or did until she stopped recently). She'd go on high alert when my S.O. would be out and it was just her and I in the house. Anybody walking towards the house was barked at, letting me know no matter where I was "somebody's coming, better come quick!" I love it :) She's everybody's best friend though as soon as she's sees they're invited.

My S.O. goes out of town quite frequently and I always slept soundly knowing that she'd hear anything amiss and be sure to let me know a.s.a.p. She also kept quite a few solicitors away when we lived in the city :)
 

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Consider a rescued mutt of 50 pounds or so. They'll have a big bark, and they'll have the size to be intimidating if you go for walks, without actually being one of the huge powerful breeds you're looking at.

Given you have a small dog right now and haven't said you have any experience with a dog over 10 pounds I DO NOT reccomend you get ANY of the breeds you listed, full stop. A lack of experience is really, really bad with those listed breeds. Even rotties, with their sweet personalities, get up to 150+ pounds and will pull you right over if they decide to chase something. Consider a mongrel. Or a pit mix that does well with other dogs/pets, there's LOTS of them, you'll have your pick of colors, personalities and sexes, and many people are more afraid of pit mixes than the purest of dobermans.

Remember, even a lab will bark at strangers.
 

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I would never, ever recommend to renters that they get any of the typical "guard dog" breeds. GSDs, Rottweilers, Dobermans, etc. are almost universally banned in rentals, and very few insurance companies will give you a policy for one. And you will need a policy, especially if you have it trained for guarding. Even if this particular landlord allows you to have one, the average length of residence for a renter is under 3 years. Most of those breeds will make it past 10 years, so what happens when you can't find another landlord willing to take your dog?
 

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The goal of burglars is to get in and get out unnoticed. If a dog is barking before he even gets to the door, he's already noticed and he's not gonna bother with it. Doesn't matter what size dog.
 
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My advice?

Get an alarm/security system if you really want your house to be protected. One that will attempt to notify you of a breech first, and then get the police dispatched ASAP if need be. There are other steps you can take to reduce the chance of an intruder at your new place too. You can install cameras that stream to your phone or ipad. They're not that expensive anymore. A motion sensor that turns a light on can also make a huge difference. You can install security doors.
Dogs are an active part of a security system not a passive part like the examples you mentioned. I agree if you want a dog as a deterrent you're probably just as well served with a sign that says beware of the dog.

In my case I have 12 to 15 foot walls around my property topped with broken glass, obvious and discreet security cameras, an alarm system, motion sensor activated lights (depending on the alarm protocol) security shutters on every window, concrete filled steel reinforced "vault" doors, a multilayer orbital security layout and a gun. The only active security out of all of that is me with a gun and a dog.

There is a reason high value sites are still guarded with dogs in addition to modern security mesures.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Consider a rescued mutt of 50 pounds or so. They'll have a big bark, and they'll have the size to be intimidating if you go for walks, without actually being one of the huge powerful breeds you're looking at.

Given you have a small dog right now and haven't said you have any experience with a dog over 10 pounds I DO NOT reccomend you get ANY of the breeds you listed, full stop. A lack of experience is really, really bad with those listed breeds. Even rotties, with their sweet personalities, get up to 150+ pounds and will pull you right over if they decide to chase something. Consider a mongrel. Or a pit mix that does well with other dogs/pets, there's LOTS of them, you'll have your pick of colors, personalities and sexes, and many people are more afraid of pit mixes than the purest of dobermans.

Remember, even a lab will bark at strangers.


my roommate has experience with some of these breeds and is the one who will be training them. I'm weary of getting a rescue dog I don't want to get one and have to take it back. that's the only reason that isn't a option I want a dog from a puppy. that I can raise around luca. he's not use to other dogs and I don't want to overwhelme him.
 

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My advice?

Get an alarm/security system if you really want your house to be protected. One that will attempt to notify you of a breech first, and then get the police dispatched ASAP if need be. There are other steps you can take to reduce the chance of an intruder at your new place too. You can install cameras that stream to your phone or ipad. They're not that expensive anymore. A motion sensor that turns a light on can also make a huge difference. You can install security doors.
Dogs are an active part of a security system not a passive part like the examples you mentioned. I agree if you want a dog as a deterrent you're probably just as well served with a sign that says beware of the dog.

In my case I have 12 to 15 foot walls around my property topped with broken glass, obvious and discreet security cameras, an alarm system, motion sensor activated lights (depending on the alarm protocol) security shutters on every window, concrete filled steel reinforced "vault" doors, a multilayer orbital security layout and a gun. The only active security out of all of that is me with a gun and a dog.

There is a reason high value sites are still guarded with dogs in addition to modern security mesures.


I completely agree! we have a gun and a security system currently but I would feel a lot more comfortable if I also had another dog.
 

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In my case I have 12 to 15 foot walls around my property topped with broken glass, obvious and discreet security cameras, an alarm system, motion sensor activated lights (depending on the alarm protocol) security shutters on every window, concrete filled steel reinforced "vault" doors, a multilayer orbital security layout and a gun. The only active security out of all of that is me with a gun and a dog.

There is a reason high value sites are still guarded with dogs in addition to modern security mesures.
Wow, that's impressive ... in a scary way. Do you live in some war-torn country?

I could not live like that, thank goodness Canada is still relatively safe.
 

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I could not live like that, thank goodness Canada is still relatively safe.
I agree, seeing all the posts about people needing all these protective features is scary. Maybe I live in a Canada-bubble, but I can't imagine needing all of that to feel safe. I can honestly say I don't know a single person who owns a gun, or has a "guard dog".

I'm inclined to think just dogs barking would be enough to deter someone, at least up here. I know if I hear someone's dog going crazy, I look out the window/go out on my porch to see what's up, which is not ideal for someone trying to be discrete I imagine.

I can't imagine anyone would rob my parent's house. With a lab/pit mix and two Dachshunds, there is no way anyone is sneaking into that house. :p
 

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Take the proper precautions and if you live in a relatively safe area that's all you need.

All my dogs have been watch alert dogs. They watch the property, and bark to alert me if someone is at the door or passing a window. The dog I have now is only 11 lbs, if anyone gets near the house he barks until I go see what he's spotted, if we are out at night he barks his head off if someone is near. That's all I want, I can then take proper action to stay safe if there's any danger. He also serves as a deterrent, a criminal's element of surprise is completely blown since the dog is barking, so they will go somewhere else where they can sneak in and out without being seen.

You'll need a puppy that has a very stable temperament, and such puppies cost over $1k if you go to a good breeder. Then you need to get the puppy trained, that's where the real cost comes in, it'll cost you over $10k if you go to someone who truly knows what they are doing. You're also going to have to do ongoing training throughout the dog's life. If you go with one of the breeds that you are considering you need to check and see if the landlord will allow you to have it. If you buy your own home you need to find a homeowners insurance that covers them. For me it's simply not worth the expense and hassle to get a trained guard dog when my 11 lb chi x dach does over 1/2 the job that a guard dog would. Back when I had my chow chow mix and terrier mix, the chow chow mix worked as a visual deterrent and the terrier mix worked as the alarm.
 

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I agree, seeing all the posts about people needing all these protective features is scary. Maybe I live in a Canada-bubble, but I can't imagine needing all of that to feel safe. I can honestly say I don't know a single person who owns a gun, or has a "guard dog".

I'm inclined to think just dogs barking would be enough to deter someone, at least up here. I know if I hear someone's dog going crazy, I look out the window/go out on my porch to see what's up, which is not ideal for someone trying to be discrete I imagine.

I can't imagine anyone would rob my parent's house. With a lab/pit mix and two Dachshunds, there is no way anyone is sneaking into that house. :p

I live in a relatively bad neighborhood and honestly, my 80lb GSD is enough. People around here are criminals have been chased down by police dogs before or know somebody who has. To them, she's not even a GSD. She's a giant police dog that may very well chase and bite them. She doesn't have a protective or mean bone in her body....It's all appearance and the fact that she barks.

My border collie, who is 30 pounds and very "cute" and attractive looking, is the one who would likely bite the crap out of somebody if they threatened me. Unfortunately he doesn't feel the same about the property. But at least he'd protect me lol.
 
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