When it comes to choosing a dog to protect your home, a Bernese Mountain Dog might not be the first breed that comes to mind. However, these gentle giants are known for their loyalty and intelligence, making them a potential candidate for the role of guard dog. In this article, we will explore whether Bernese Mountain Dogs make good guard dogs and what qualities they possess that make them suitable for this task.
History of Bernese Mountain Dogs
Before we dive into whether Bernese Mountain Dogs make good guard dogs, it’s important to understand their history. Bernese Mountain Dogs originated in Switzerland and were originally bred to work on farms. They were used to pull carts, herd livestock, and act as watchdogs. Due to their large size and protective nature, they were also used as guard dogs.
Today, Bernese Mountain Dogs are known for their gentle temperament and affectionate nature. They are often used as therapy dogs and make great family pets. However, their history as working and guard dogs should not be overlooked.
One of the first things to consider when deciding whether a dog makes a good guard dog is their physical characteristics. Bernese Mountain Dogs are a large breed, weighing between 70-115 pounds and standing at 23-28 inches tall at the shoulder. Their size alone can be a deterrent to intruders.
In addition to their size, Bernese Mountain Dogs have a thick, double coat that provides insulation in cold weather. This coat also gives them a formidable appearance, which can be intimidating to strangers. Their large paws and strong jaws make them capable of defending themselves and their families if necessary.
Loyalty and Protective Nature
Bernese Mountain Dogs are known for their loyalty to their families. They are affectionate and gentle with children, but also protective when they sense a threat. This protective nature is what makes them a potential candidate for the role of guard dog.
When a Bernese Mountain Dog senses danger, they will not hesitate to defend their family and property. They are not aggressive by nature, but their protective instincts can make them intimidating to intruders. This protective nature is also what makes them a great watchdog, as they will alert their owners to any potential threats.
Training and Socialization
While Bernese Mountain Dogs have the potential to make great guard dogs, it’s important to note that proper training and socialization are crucial. Without proper training, a Bernese Mountain Dog may become anxious or aggressive, which can be dangerous for both the dog and their family.
Training should begin at a young age and should focus on obedience and socialization. Bernese Mountain Dogs are intelligent, but they can be stubborn, so training should be consistent and firm but never harsh. Socialization is also important, as it will help the dog learn to distinguish between friends and potential threats.
So, do Bernese Mountain Dogs make good guard dogs? The answer is yes, with the proper training and socialization. While they may not be the first breed that comes to mind when you think of guard dogs, their size, loyalty, and protective nature make them a potential candidate for the role. However, it’s important to remember that not all Bernese Mountain Dogs will be suited for this task, and proper training and socialization are crucial for success.
If you’re considering a Bernese Mountain Dog as a guard dog, make sure to do your research and choose a reputable breeder. With the right training and care, a Bernese Mountain Dog can be a loyal and effective protector of your home and family.