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Do Dobermans Make Good Guard Dogs? Training, Pros & Cons

Written by: Ashley Bates

Last Updated on May 11, 2024 by Dogster Team

black doberman

Do Dobermans Make Good Guard Dogs? Training, Pros & Cons

Doberman Pinschers have an extremely profound presence. These dogs are muscular, sleek, and sharp. But does their guard dog nature come hand in hand with their appearance?

In most cases, yes. Dobermans make excellent guard dogs. But keep in mind that personality is entirely individual. That means some Dobermans will be masters at guarding while others will cower away from potential threats.


Doberman History: Breed Purpose

The Doberman Pinscher is a German breed of dog brought about in 1890 by Karl Friedrich Louis Dobermann. This man was a tax collector, which already gave him a sour taste to those he dealt with.

Was Karl a good man? That’s up to interpretation. We know he was a dogcatcher among various questionable professions and was pretty ruthless and efficient. At that time, tax collectors were a target. It seems that no one liked men demanding money from their citizens. They often took a dog with them on their ventures for their own protection.

The Doberman is a cross of several German breeds at that time. They were developed with the explicit goal of being guard dogs, remaining completely loyal to their owners.

We want to think that they really succeeded. Of course, some Dobermans will naturally be more inclined to guard than others, but this particular breed has an instilled quality.

doberman dog lying at the edge of the cliff
Image By: OlgaOvcharenko, Shutterstock

Doberman Pinscher Character

Most Doberman Pinschers have lovely personalities, especially toward their caretakers. These dogs are incredibly loyal, really rising to the occasion for their humans.

They are excellent with single people and large families, loving each individual tremendously. Some Dobermans might naturally gravitate toward one specific person in the household, though they are keen to protect them all.

Dobermans usually have excellent discernment. They can judge character quite well and are generally suspicious of the right kinds of people. Your Doberman would tout the classic stereotype of dogs being a good judge of character. And if your dog doesn’t trust that person, they’re probably not trustworthy.

Now, of course, some Dobermans can be extra cautious, which might lead to aggression or paranoid suspicion.

To really explore and enhance your Doberman guarding techniques, training is essential. They have all of the right ingredients to make the perfect guard dog, but direction is needed so that they can build on their skills.

doberman training
Image By: YamaBSM, Pixabay

Doberman Pinscher Appearance

Dobermans are hefty, muscular dogs with a dominating presence. Not only do Doberman Pinschers make excellent watchdogs, but their overall appearance also lends them the ability to act as necessary physically.

Dobermans get a pretty bad rap for unwarranted dog attacks. But in reality, most of these events occur because your Doberman feels that your livelihood is being threatened.

They are defenders of their homes, muscular, and capable enough to do so. Since they can sometimes get above 100 pounds, it is crucial to learn how to handle your Doberman.

The Doberman’s standard appearance includes cropped ears and a docked tail. These two features make the Dobermans look even more fierce than they do naturally. It’s definitely an intimidation factor.

Even though this is the breed standard, not all Dobermans have cropped ears or docked tails.

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Training Your Doberman

Some Dobermans naturally have internal know-how when it comes to guarding. Some of them are well aware of their property and those who dwell in the home. They are willing to defend them at any cost, knowing just the right time to do so. But if you want your Doberman to guard your home, the proper training is absolutely essential.

You never want to put your Doberman in a predicament where they feel like they have to protect you but don’t know the cues to listen for or whether to act. You can very easily teach your Doberman to guard at home, permitting you to have the right experience level and training techniques. But if you feel in doubt, professionals are always on standby looking to help owners with the process. In fact, any good dog trainer will tell you that their duties are only half the fight.

Owners need to continue to work with their dogs throughout the training process so that both the Doberman and the person can work together to achieve long-term results.

doberman pincher training
Image by: Fotokostic, Shutterstock

Pros & Cons of Having a Guard Dog

Is it a beneficial thing to have a guard dog? Absolutely, in certain scenarios. If you train your Doberman to be a guard dog, there are several things to consider.

If you’re looking for a family protector, you couldn’t pick a better breed. But the reality is that guard dogs might appear friendly when they’re with their handler. However, the reaction can be very different if anyone approaches this dog outside your vision.

It’s essential to understand the responsibility of having a guard dog for their own protection and those they encounter. Here is a quick pro and cons list about having a guard dog.

  • Guard dogs are insanely loyal to owners
  • Guard dogs are intimidating
  • Guard dogs are action-oriented
  • Guard dogs search for invaders on high alert
  • Your family can feel protected
  • Lawsuits from unwarranted attacks
  • Lifelong training involved
  • Guard dogs require a task
  • It could become a liability

Why Is Training So Beneficial?

Training is not only beneficial for a guard dog, but it’s also absolutely essential. Even if you don’t go with a professional trainer, you’ll have to keep up with training yourself, and it doesn’t just stop after a specific time. You must constantly evolve and change your training methods depending on your dog.

If a dog lacks the proper training, it might have improper impulse control, and some can even be hyper-aggressive toward strangers. A breed like a Doberman is already quite a challenge since they are large, powerful breeds with bad reputations.

Training can put into place everything you expect from that dog and everything you’re willing to receive from them. Command training is the most critical factor here, as it teaches them obedience and direction.

If you are not familiar with the proper training of a guard dog, getting help from a professional is vital. You do not have to elect a personal trainer, as this can be several thousand dollars.

However, it would help if you got tips and tricks from professional resources online or speak to your veterinarian about other options.

doberman pinscher barking outdoor
Image by: Best dog photo, Shutterstock

Dobermans Get a Bad Rap

Dobermans have been on the chopping block for quite a while. They are one of the dog breeds that you might see excluded from apartment complexes or other rental spaces. Since Dobermans are more likely to act in a situation where they feel someone they love or their home is threatened, it has potentially been caused by reports in the past.

Since Dobermans have that kind of reputation, it is important to have an adequately trained Doberman that listens to commands, as this protects both your dog and strangers. If your dog attacks another person, child, or animal, you might have to have them put to sleep. This is entirely avoidable with proper training and safety measures.

It is also imperative that any company that comes to your home is entirely aware of your dog’s purpose, demonstrating the proper respect when they’re in your house.

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Final Thoughts

So now you know that Dobermans can make excellent guard dogs, permitting that they are appropriately trained. An untrained Doberman might not be able to read the situation correctly, resulting in unwarranted biting or attacks.

Invest in a personal dog trainer or develop techniques on your own at home that work for your dog. Remember, having a guard dog is a big responsibility and you, as the owner, hold the reins for success or failure.

Featured Image Credit: Pexels

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