A guard dog alerts his owner whenever there’s a stranger or threat in the surrounding. These dogs are loyal, smart, courageous, and will try everything they can to protect you and your family. In order for your dog to maximize his full potential of guarding your home, let me share with you some tips on preparing your dog for guard dog training.
There are specific dog breeds endowed with certain traits the best guard dog could have. The Doberman Pinscher is probably one of the most popular breeds for guard dogs. With their body structure and temperament, these dogs will surely guard against intruders — whether a person or an animal.
7 Tips on Preparing Your Dog for Guard Dog Training
While there are certain dog breeds best for guarding, without proper training, they will not be able to perform well. It is highly recommended to give your precious pooches the proper guard dog training and before doing so, prep him up. Here are some tips on how you can prepare your dog for his actual guard dog training:
1. Choose the Best Breed
Some dog breeds such as the German Shepherd have the instinct to guard and protect and are in nature territorial. In addition, their physical structure is most often intimidating and can easily scare away intruders just by their sight. Because of this, they are the top choices in picking a guard dog. However, given the appropriate training, gentle dogs such as the Golden Retriever can also be good guard dogs.
2. Socialize Your Dog
Prior to engaging your dog to training him as a guard dog, socialize him first. When you socialize your dog, you teach him how to adapt to his environment and get accustomed to the noises in his surroundings. This will also help your dog recognize friends and family. Also, when your dog learns how to socialize, he’ll manage to distinguish what is threatening or not.
3. Equip Your Dog With Basic Obedience Training
You can either enroll your dog in an obedience class or give him the training yourself. It is essential for all dogs to learn basic obedience training not only in preparation for guard dog training but also in other types of training. Basic commands such as “sit” and “stay” will be very helpful as you progress in advanced training. If you can teach your furry friend to obey these basic rules, he’ll be able to recognize you as his pack leader.
Obedience training is best taught during your dog’s early years. Puppies have yet to learn many things and this will give him the opportunity to learn new things before he will be able to develop bad habits.
4. Give Positive Reinforcement
It is highly recommended to use positive reinforcement when it comes to your dogs. If he displays good behavior, reward him by giving his favorite treat or praise him by saying “good job” and any other encouraging words. In this manner, your dog will tend to pose good behavior more often. If on the other hand, your dog behaves badly, you can give him time-outs by confining him in his crate.
5. Determine Property Boundaries
During your guard dog training, teach your dog to determine the scope of your property. Familiarize your dog with your property and let him treat it as his territory. Using positive reinforcement will make it easier for you and your dog to do this step.
6. Teach Your Dog When to Bark
In training your dog, you have to know how to control his barking. Teach your dog to bark on request. When someone is at your door, train him to bark. Additionally, as you train him when to bark, you must train him when to stop. Give the command “shush” when he needs to stop barking. Again, use positive reinforcement in teaching him this step.
7. Be Consistent
It is definitely vital to be consistent on training a dog. Lack of consistency is often one of the most common problems encountered when training a dog. You should always be consistent in giving your dogs commands — it must be clear and easy for your dog to understand. By doing so, it will help your dogs to grasp the things you’re teaching him better.