Most dogs would naturally want to protect us from danger, but the truth is some breeds are better at protecting lives and properties than others. There are a number of factors that makes a dog a good guard dog. This can range from their temperament, physical strength, courage, loyalty, and fearlessness to resistance to pain and more.

So “What is the best guard dog?” Funny enough, the answer to that question is a matter of opinion. This simply means that you can’t pick out one dog to be the best guard dog. What you consider a top guard dog and rightly so may not meet another person’s criteria.

Having said that, here is a list of the best guard dogs in the world.



Known for their powerful appearance and superb speed coupled with strength and endurance. The bullmastiff easily overtakes and captures intruders without having to maul them. This is a very important attribute as it gives you the opportunity to properly access the situation and make appropriate decisions for everyone.

They also have the attribute of not barking a lot, so when they bark, it is usually for something important. Also, it is hard not to respond to their strong authoritative bark.

They tend to go all out when it comes to protecting their family but are also very docile in nature when dealing with their family making them a perfect fit for any household that adopts them.

They have a stubborn streak and normally need a strong hand in training them and also lots of socialization to keep people coming around them safe.



These guard dogs were used to protect nobles and royals in feudal Japan. In fact, back then they were bred specially for this purpose. This was easy because they were fiercely loyal to their owners and always suspicious of strangers.

Fast forward to today. The Akita would guard and protect you and your family even without much training. All you need for them to begin is for you to identify members of your pack and you will find them keeping a strict watch over you and your family. Any dog trainer would tell you that the Akita takes guarding and protecting his family very seriously, in fact, you can say they only live to be guard dogs.

This makes it very important to constantly socialize them. 


This way, they would always make sense of their surroundings and also not be a danger to other people or pets.

You can even get more out of the Akita by enrolling them in obedience and guard dog training programs.



Known as the fifth-smartest dog breed in the world. The Doberman Pinscher has a lot of attributes that make it a very good guard dog. They are fearless, alert, loyal, and very fast dogs. If you have a large piece of property that you are trying to guard and protect, the Doberman Pinscher is the dog for you.

On the flip side, this dog requires a lot of exercises and is best suited for families with large compounds and an active lifestyle. This means that they need to be engaged in some very physical activity daily, also there is a need for socialization to help the Doberman Pinscher differentiate between potential threats and those that are not.


The Cane Corso can be described as a dog that has seen it all. This Italian breed Curriculum Vitae would go something like this “a guard dog, war dog, hunter, fighter, stock herder, watchdog, etc. Its physical appearance is enough to put some fear into potential problem makers and its deep-toned bark is more than enough warning to put the fear of GOD into anyone who was considering messing up around its domain.

Being a guard dog comes instinctively to the Cane Corso, this is probably because that is what their ancestors were bred for and the same can be said true even today. But as with such dogs comes the responsibility of training them properly.



Engaging them in an obedience training program or even a guard dog program can do them a world of good.



During the reign of the Roman empire, the Rottweiler was well known not just for protecting livestock for the Roman army, they fearlessly engaged predators and invaders. Naturally strong-willed, intelligent, and an extremely loyal breed. They make a very good fit for guard dogs.

Naturally, they act non-challant when around strangers and only strike when the stranger acts as a perceived threat. The main challenge with Rottweilers is that they do not give any signal or alert before attacking. This has given them a bad name in the public domain.

However, a well-socialized Rottweiler would be a safe animal to be with as they would naturally want to care for and protect instead of doing otherwise.


There is a reason why the Belgian Malinois is the favorite dog breed for the police and military K-9 units. They are loaded with so many special attributes intelligence, loyalty, agility, search and rescue abilities, trainability, high energy level and so much more.

The Belgian Malinois as with most guard dogs needs proper socialization to be at ease in new or unfamiliar situations. They also need plenty of exercises and specialized training. This is one of the few reasons why you won’t see the Belgian Malinois in just any household.




Intelligent, independent, protective, territorial, and aggressive with strangers. These are some of the attributes that make them good guard dogs. Originating from Asia and migrated to Hungary in the 10th century, this breed was well known for its ability to guard livestock. They were traditionally left with livestock to guard without any master around so they had to depend on their own thinking and hence developed innovative ways of protecting their livestock.

With the absence of livestock in the modern family setting, this guardian need that is inert in them is directed towards their family members or their new pack.

Because in ancient times they were used to making decisions on their own. 

This problem comes up from time to time in their daily interaction with their owners. This is one of those dog breeds that it needs to be made clear to them that you are in charge and not them.

They are usually not a good fit for first-time dog owners as they need a lot of exercises, obedience training, socialization, and engagement to keep them calm and meet their daily needs.


Just like the Belgian Malinois, the German Shepherd is another favorite dog breed for the police and military K-9 units. Intense, loyal, protective, and all other attributes the Belgian Malinois has, it also needs the kind of attention the Belgian Malinois gets, but there is the need to add that the German Shepherd is prone to separation anxiety. This can lead them to act fearful and nervous.

They need good socialization and exercising at least 2 hours daily to keep them in top form.




This breed is known to be dominant, intimidating, strong, and powerful yet very loyal to its family members. As with most guard dogs, they require mental stimulation and physical exercise with constant attention from time to time. Engaging them in a good obedience training program can go a long way in helping you manage this giant breed properly.


This breed has such intense loyalty to its family that the literal word “I will do anything for you” comes to life when you have the Rhodesian Ridgeback by your side. But here is the real kicker, this breed is known historically to have hunted lions and games much bigger than they are successfully. This literarily means that it does not matter how feracious or dangerous the opposition is. They definitely have not met a Rhodesian Ridgeback yet.

The breed’s guarding instinct is so high that it does not need to be trained to guard you. But it does need a structured life and an obedience training program to keep them in check and make them able to follow your commands, especially when necessary.




One of the best guard dogs you can get, very similar in physical appearance to the American pit bull terrier and originally bred for bear and bullfighting. They have an aggressive nature which can be tempered by socialization and obedience training.

Strange enough the Staffordshire Terrier has been known to be great with family members or self-identified pack members, but come to think of it this should not be strange as these are the people they are being guardians and defensive for.


Originally bred to guard and protect livestock, as the years passed by this natural instinct for guardianship got transferred to their adopted family or new pack. The Kuvasz is naturally a territorial dog, they act non-challant around strangers but crave affection from their family members.

This makes it important to socialize them properly and also engage them in an obedience training program. They are also energetic dogs and so need a lot of exercises to keep them calm.



When looking for guard dogs, you should be looking for big muscular dogs who display high energy, intelligence, and loyalty. Basically calm and low-energy dogs make bad guard dogs, they usually won’t take recognanse of strangers or threats around them. Labrador retrievers, golden retrievers, Irish setters, and Basset hounds would make very bad guard dogs just to name a few.

Here is a list of some dogs that would make good guard dogs: Chow Chow, Dogue de Bordeaux, Belgian Sheepdog, Belgian Tervuren, Tibetan Mastiff, Anatolian Shepherd Dog, Black Russian Terrier, Great Pyrenees, Neapolitan Mastiff, Fila Brasileiro (Brazilian Mastiff), Dogo Argentino, Tosa Inu, Bouvier des Flandres, Ca de Bou.