Dog breeds

how to train doberman to be a guard dog


Doberman Pinschers are a relatively new breed, originating in the 19th century. The original Doberman was bred by a man named Louis Dobermann, who was a German tax collector and an animal control officer.

He wanted a dog that would protect him and provide companionship. While the breeds he combined are unknown, the modern “Dobies” are nonetheless excellent companions and guards.

doberman sitting

According to the AKC, Doberman Pinschers are the fifteenth most popular breed in America as of 2017. They are alert, highly intelligent, and loyal dogs that are somewhat friendly with children and the family. However, they also are watchful and protective enough to be guard dogs.

Stay with us to find out more about this amazing breed and how they ca be trained to become great guard dogs. Here is what we are going to cover today:

  • Doberman Traits That Make Them Good Guard Dogs
  • Training a Doberman to Be a Watch Dog
  • Training a Doberman to Be a Guard Dog
  • Training a Doberman to Attack on Command

Ok, let’s start by discussing some of the traits that make Dobermans excellent guard dogs.

Doberman Traits That Make Them Good Guard Dogs

There are many reasons why Dobermans can be great guard dogs, besides the fact that they’re some of the smartest dogs out there. Here are some Doberman traits that make them excellent guard dogs.

They are protective

doberman protective

Dobermans are known for their intense protection instincts, physical strength, intelligence and unending family loyalty.

Although they have a fierce reputation and are sometimes described as vicious animals, they will become aggressive or attack only when needed.

The Doberman Pinscher was initially bred to be an aggressive dog with the intent of defending their owners. So, their protective nature has always been an integral part of the breed.

Dobermans are amazing and versatile dogs who are known to defend their families at all costs, taking down threats, and being gentle around children all at the same time.

Here is a video of Dobermans showing their protection skills:

They are very intelligent

intelligent doberman

Dobermans are some of the smartest dog breeds in the world. In fact, the Doberman Pinscher ranks number 5 smartest dog breed in the world. Because of their intelligence, this breed thrives in environments where they can learn new tasks and have a job to do.

Because of their intelligence, they are often used for a variety of jobs including police work, scent tracking, search and rescue, and guiding the blind.

Dobermans are so intelligent that they are usually capable of learning a new command with less than 5 repetitions! Depending on the complexity of the command, a Doberman can be taught a new trick in under 30 minutes.

Compared to other breeds, Dobermans are 5 times faster than the average dog when it comes to learning commands.

They are loyal

loyal doberman

Doberman Pinschers are one of the most loyal dog breeds. Because of their loyalty, they enjoy being in close contact with their loved ones.

If well socialized from a young age, Dobermans can be great with kids. They can also work extremely well with many other pets.

Dobermans don’t like being away from the group. In fact, Dobermans enjoy being with the pack so much that it isn’t uncommon to be able to walk one regularly without a leash.

They are intimidating-looking

angry doberman

The Doberman Pinscher is a large-sized dog breed. They are compactly-built, muscular, fast, and powerful.

Their eyes are almond-shaped and large, and always alert in appearance. His ears are long and triangle-shaped.

They can weigh between 60 and 100 pounds, and measure between 24 to 28 inches. In other words, they are big enough to put off most wannabe intruders.

They are easy to train

doberman training

As we’ve already said, Dobermans are very intelligent dogs, and they are eager to please their owners. This makes for an almost-perfect combination for training.

However, this breed needs an owner who is able to offer adequate obedience training.

One of the best methods of teaching a dog basic obedience commands such as sit, stay, down, and come is by using a dog training clicker. These simple devices can “tell” your dog exactly which behavior you’re rewarding.

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Next, we discuss the differences between a watch dog and a guard dog. We also explain how to train a Doberman to be a watch dog.

Training a Doberman to Be a Watch Dog

When selecting a puppy, you should buy him or her from a reliable breeder and look over its pedigree, possibly even meeting some of its family to learn what the puppy will be like once it is an adult. If aggression or nervousness runs in its family, perhaps you should look at different animals.

As with every other dog, it is important that your Doberman is well-socialized. Poor socialization can lead to a host of behavioral issues, such as shyness and aggression. Training is also an important part of ensuring the best experience with that dog.

Dobermans are very devoted to their owner. It means that they are excellent guard dogs, but you must be an active leader. Unless you want anarchy in your house, you should be consistent and firm in his training. You should tell him what you want him to do and expect him to obey. If your dog follows, you should reward him. Consistency is the key.

Once your dog has completed obedience training, you should teach your dog to alert you to the presence of strangers. Train him to bark when someone knocks on the door or enters your property and to stop when you give the order. Reward him for barking and for stopping when you give the order.

When this part of training is complete, your dog is now a watchdog. The dog will alert you when someone is on your property. The liability of having a dog increases with guard dog training, but a dog that attacks real threats is better protection than a dog who merely barks.

Stay with us to find out how to train your Doberman to be a guard dog…

Training a Doberman to Be a Guard Dog

doberman guarding

Training your Doberman to be a guard dog brings a lot of benefits. Firstly, you will have an effective deterrent and an efficient way of keeping your home and your loved ones safe and secure.

Secondly, guard dog training is a great way to instill discipline, making it easier to teach your Doberman a range of other commands and tricks. Finally, this type of training is a great way to channel his energy into something productive and useful.

To train your Doberman to be a guard dog, he must not only be able to make snap decisions and respond when you are in danger, but he should also be able to release on command and return to you once the incident has been de-escalated.

Here is how you can teach your Doberman to attack on command:

Training a Doberman to Attack on Command

doberman attack

Step 1: Safety First

Wear a protective training glove that covers not just your hand, but also your entire arm. You have to make sure that any part of your body that your dog can attack is covered and safe from their bites.

You don’t want to suffer any injuries while training your Doberman.

Step 2: Basic Obedience Commands

Start by asking your dog to sit. If you have not taught him the basic obedience commands such as sit, stay, down, and come, then you must teach those first before teaching the “attack” command.

Here is a video showing how to teach your dog basic obedience commands:

Step 3: Provoke a Reaction

doberman bite

The key to training your Doberman to attack on your command is to put him in a situation where he would actually want to attack you.

Your dog will not want to attack you under normal circumstances. You can try tapping him in the face with the glove on your arm. This is a good way of irritating your dog and provoking his reaction.

Continue doing this until your dog attacks the glove in anger.

Step 4: Attack on Command

As soon as the dog attacks the glove, shout the word “attack” loudly. You are doing this because you want to make your dog understand what the word “attack” really means.

Step 5: Stop on Command

Once you are happy with your dog’s reaction, shout the word “stop”. When the dog stops biting your hand, command him to sit.

Step 6: It’s Time for Cookies

doberman cookies

Praise the dog verbally or show him that you are happy with his performance. You can also reward your dog by giving him some cookies or other treats.

There you go! You Doberman is now trained to attack on your command.

Here are some Doberman training videos that may help you during your training sessions:


If you want a guard dog, especially one that is also family-friendly, you may want to consider getting a Doberman Pinscher. With its roots as a guardian and companion, in many ways this breed is ideal.

Ensure that your dog comes from a good lineage to avoid many hereditary behavioral and physical issues. Be consistent and firm with him, and you will likely find your Doberman to be a beautiful guard dog.

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