Pit bulls have a reputation for being overly aggressive, regardless of protecting its owner. However, those are only sensationalized accounts of dog attacks in the media. Pit bulls are affectionate and loyal. All dogs protect their owners when they are trained to do so. Will a pit bull protect its owner as well? Read on to find out.
Why pit bulls protect their owners
Dog owners may notice that their dogs suddenly become aggressive when an unknown person or car passes by your home. However, they also seem to be friendly towards new guests. It can be confusing for dog owners to know whether or not their dogs can also protect them, but the truth is that all dogs have an innate instinct to protect their owners.
There is just a big difference between trained protection and natural protective instincts. For pit bulls, it is the same. A tiny chihuahua can become aggressive at the sign of something unknown outside their territory. A pit bull just seems scarier because they are bigger and look more aggressive.
Both types of dogs will protect their owner, especially if the owner feels scared or is on alert. However, there are times when this will not happen. These instances include:
- When a pit bull has become naturally frightened due to a history of abuse
- When a pit bull has been trained not to bark at random people, animals, or objects
- When a pit bull has become close with a dangerous person without your knowledge
- When a pit bull receives tempting treats from strangers
Unfortunately, you can’t control when your pit bull decides to protect you. However, if you train them to do so, they will definitely be on guard when the right triggers are in place. For that to happen, your pit bull must be trained as a guard dog.
Training pit bulls to be guard dogs
Guard dog training is not a DIY project. You can’t expect to train your pit bull to protect you by using the same methods you used for potty training. If you try to train your pit bull to become a guard dog, you may end up making a mistake and cause your pit bull to attack someone close to you or other people who live in your neighborhood.
For that reason, you must bring your pit bull to a behavioral specialist and guard dog trainer. They are certified in training guard dogs so that you can command your dog to be on alert only when needed. This is important because a dog should not be on guard duty all day. They need to play, train, and bond with their owner. As a guard dog, you can decide when and how they will perform their duties to protect you.
When your pit bull has finished guard dog training, here is what you can expect:
- Your pit bull will respond to specialized commands to protect you in specific ways, such as body protection, territory protection, and alert barker.
- Your pit bull will only attack a perpetrator when they see certain movements like lifting an arm as if to point a gun or holding their arm out as if holding a knife.
- Your pit bull will learn to release on command so that they do not do any fatal damage to strangers.
- Your pit bull will learn when to be on alert and when to relax.
- Your pit bull will know the schedule of his guard duties, which may be at night or while you are outside your home.
Warning. Pit bulls have powerful jaws, so it is best to consider whether or not you want to train them to attack burglars or trespassers. When you are not around to give the release command, your pit bull may not release the perp which can cause problems. Your dog may get hurt or they might fatally wound a person.
A guard dog is not an attack dog. So, be mindful of what you want to train your dog to do. Ask experts and give them the exact reasons why you want your pit bull to protect you.
What to do when a pit bull is overprotective
Now, these are not rare cases since we mentioned that dogs can automatically protect their owners out of loyalty and respect. If you end up with an overprotective pit bull, it is time to bring them to a behavioral specialist for dogs. The expert will train your dog to direct their protective energy through focus. This prevents any untoward incidents in your neighborhood or while you are going somewhere new with your pit bull.
How will a pit bull protect its owner?
After training your pit bull, here is what you can expect:
- Your pit bull will stay with you when you ask it to
- Your pit bull will not attack anyone unless they are on alert mode or when you direct them to (The latter is not advisable unless you are in grave danger.)
- Your pit bull will recognize who can safely approach you or your home.
- You can command your pit bull to recognize actions of safe people like mailmen, delivery people, and new guests.
- Your pit bull will recognize other dogs in the house as fellow guard dogs and will not be aggressive towards them.
When training a pit bull, you must always be present. Guard dog training is not a daycare activity. You must also be trained to become a good owner who owns a guard dog.