Approaching a hunk of a dog like a Rottweiler can be frightening or intimidating for some people. Although they are caring and loving animals, their presence can be enough to make others uneasy when they’re near. Perhaps you’re a proud fur parent of a Rottweiler or are currently entertaining the thought of getting one. In that case, you might have already asked yourself: are Rottweilers good guard dogs?
The simple answer to the question is yes, Rottweilers can, in fact, make great guard dogs. Rottweilers are naturally protective of their family and are the type to not back down from confrontation. However, they can be quite distrustful of strangers given their protective nature. Taking your Rottweiler through proper training will help regulate this protectiveness and allow your dog to distinguish between a potential threat and a mere passive stranger.
There’s a lot to know about the Rottweiler breed and its common link with being a guard dog. This article will discuss all of this, including how you can make your dog’s guarding behavior work in your favor.
What does a Guard Dog Normally Do?
Watchdogs are usually confused with the term guard dogs. Rottweilers are the latter, while watchdogs serve as an alarm that lets the owner know there’s a problem. Even so, watchdogs remain passive. On the other hand, a guard dog is akin to a security guard who helps alert everyone on the property to the problem and boldly steps in to defend and protect their family if the dog thinks that the situation calls for intervention.
Guarding is a natural behavior in Rottweilers, but you don’t want them to become overly aggressive and bark toward every harmless stranger. Because of this, such behavior must be addressed early on through proper training.
What Age Do Rotties Begin Guarding?
Rottweilers naturally start to guard their humans when they’re around six to eight months old. These are their teenage years, which is the stage where they are still learning to be a grown-up. That said, this is also your Rottweiler’s learning stage, making it the ideal time to begin training.
Male vs. Female Rottweilers: Which is More Protective?
Both Rottweiler genders are naturally protective since this behavior is something that is learned from their breed ancestry. Even so, males tend to be more protective in terms of overall behavior, making them ideal guard dogs.
Male Rotties have a tendency to be abrupt and standoff when watching over their family members to make sure that they are protected. In the same way, this means that male Rottweilers are more aggressive since they can be considered the harsher ones as compared to females.
But to be fair, female Rottweilers can also make good guard dogs since they can be protective as well. The obvious difference between their male counterparts is that females tend to be more submissive than males; they’re also more affectionate. That’s why when it comes to a household filled with other dogs or children, female Rotties tend to fit in better since they’re generally friendlier than male Rotties. It’s also worth noting that female Rotties tend to be easier to train over the long term.
How to Train Your Rottweiler To be Ideal Guard Dog?
As mentioned earlier, Rottweilers are fiercely loyal, intelligent, and protective dogs which means that they constantly do their best to keep their humans away from danger as much as possible. Consequently, this can mean that they can also show unwarranted aggression to people or situations that pose no threat at all.
Because of this, you need to train your Rottweiler to protect you in the right circumstances so that they know how to act accordingly in different situations without becoming a potential risk.
You might need a bit of professional training if your goal is to make your Rottweiler a complete guard dog, protecting you from danger. However, if you just want your dog to defend you, keep you safe, or alert you of danger, then you can do it by training it to be a basic protection dog.
It’s important to remember that your Rottweiler should be well-socialized before you begin training, especially since a socialized dog tends to be more comfortable with other dogs or strangers. In the same way, they can also respond and act better in difficult and new situations.
The first thing you ought to do is to teach them basic obedience commands such as “Bark,” “Sit,” or “Stop.” These commands are great for controlling what your Rottie does and helping to build a foundation as a good guard dog. From this point on, you can take the training up a notch by challenging your dog’s protective skills and managing how they respond to certain circumstances you have prepared for them. It’s also important that they understand it’s okay if you leave without them in case you need to escape dangerous situations.
Kassidy Shepperd is the editor in chief for Canine-Prime.com. She is is a dog lover/trainer, a freelance writer and a volunteer at many pet rescue and shelter centers. Kassidy is based in Colorado and regularly writes for dog related magazines and blogs.