Most people who consider getting a dog do so for a reason. Some people just want companionship. Others want a dog for a specific purpose. Many people who get a dog are looking for protection.

While humans and dogs have grown together for many centuries, they have always had a unique relationship. Humans would provide protection for their dog, and their dog would do the same for their humans. This is why guardians have become so popular today.

Today, we take a look at the top six best watchdogs to help show which breeds have become popular choices.

History of Watchdogs

The history of watchdogs goes back almost as far the relationship between humans and dogs does. For the most part, a watchdog was used to warn humans. Because dogs are able to hear and smell better than humans can, people would rely on their dog to keep watch. When the dog became alert or started barking, people would know to be on alert as well. This relationship helped both dog and human survive.

Watchdogs were common even as human civilization advanced. Romans had mosaics outside their homes that would warn intruders that there was a watchdog on premise. Think of it as an ancient “beware of dog” sign. Asian civilizations had guard lions that look like a cross between a lion and a dog. From the earliest of times, dogs were important to human survival. Even today, many people have watchdogs to protect their family or property.

It is important to point out that a watchdog is not the same thing as an attack dog. The role of a watchdog is to warn their owner of possible threats. An attack dog is more likely to take action against possible threats.

What Makes a Great Guardian?

So, what do these dogs all have in common? The job of guardian is a difficult one but these breeds all seem to exhibit these traits. Watchdogs have these traits:

  • Intelligent
  • Loyal
  • Courageous
  • Territorial
  • Affectionate

You want to be able to train your dog. They have to learn the limits of your land, or you want them to quickly learn to trust new people whom you trust. You also want them to protect your family. Your dog is a part of your family, and you want to be able to take your shoes off at the end of the night and relax with your companion.

Top 6 Best Watchdogs

Watchdogs have been used by humans for centuries, but here is a list of today’s top six best watchdogs.

1.   American Staffordshire Terrier

Also known as AmStaffs, this breed is strong and confident. They won’t back down from an intruder which makes them a great watchdog, but they are good-natured and loving toward their family. While the AmStaff has a history of fighting and blood sport, a responsibly bred and raised AmStaff will be a guardian for even the youngest of children.

2. American Pitbull Terrier

The American Pitbull Terrier is recognized by the United Kennel Club and the American Dog Breeders Association, but the breed is not officially recognized by the American Kennel Club. This is likely due to the controversial past the dog has had. While the breed was used in fighting and ratting in early America, it has become a common breed in present day blood sport even though it has been outlawed.

The APT is a loyal dog that has been bred to not show aggression to humans. That said, they are loyal companions who are eager to please and make great working dogs as well. They have found their way into military and police use. 

3. Doberman Pinscher

The Doberman Pinscher that is both powerful and intelligent. These traits make them a great guard dog because they are always watching and ready to spring into action. They are loyal and imposing toward intruders, but are always willing to lay out for a belly rub.

The Doberman too has gained great fame for its use with military and police forces.

4. Rottweiler

This breed was originally used as a working dog. It would herd livestock and would even pull carts. Their large frame makes them a great choice for the job.

The breed is good-natured, devoted and eager to work. They need an outlet for their energy as they have been bred to cover large distances and to be on alert at all times. Their trainer will need a strong hand to control the Rottweiler’s want to control their clan.

5. Boerboel

The Boerboel is a South African Mastiff breed that is known for having one of the strongest bites in the dog world. The good news is that this powerful dog doesn’t need to bite to emanate their power.

The breed originates from the farm where they would work, but they were also guardians of the family. The Boerboel will protect their loved ones from the most ferocious predators in their native South Africa. Luckily today they are pretty happy to just spend quality time with their family.

6. Great Pyrenees

This breed was a working dog that spends most of its time on farms in Eastern Europe. The breed is known to be confident and gentle, though it’s ready to spring into action to protect its territory or family.

The breed is wary of strangers though they can take cues from their owner. If you are comfortable with someone the dog doesn’t know, they will likely settle down and follow you.

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