A Dog’s Bark Can Be Better Than Its Bite

Written by | Updated April 2, 2013

When trying to ward off intruders, a dog’s bark can be more important than its bite. A dog that barks at strangers is a burglar deterrent because loud dogs alert homeowners and neighbors to an unwelcome presence. Instead of training terrifying attack dogs, consider getting a small and yappy watchdog. Here are some breeds that make good, loud watchdogs.

Yorkshire Terrier

A Yorkshire terrier is lively, affectionate, and devoted—great for playing with kids. This is a dog that has a hard time sitting still, with lots of energy. A Yorkshire terrier makes the perfect fearless watchdog with its protective tendencies, and relentless, high-pitched bark. While this dog is definitely noisy and yappy, it can be trained to stop barking with proper commands.


The Chihuahua is feisty, confident, brave, and loyal. This little bundle needs lots of petting and attention, and he will usually become attached to one person in particular. He’s difficult to train, but he will bark at and even bite strangers or people who tease him or rough-house with him.

Toy or miniature poodle

If you’re looking for a good watchdog that’s also easy train, consider going with a toy or miniature poodle. This is a great family dog because it usually does not attach to one person but to the entire family. Poodles are very protective and will energetically bark when a stranger approaches, making it a great watchdog.


A Dachshund has tons of energy and likes to be a part of whatever is happening. It’s a dog that will intensely bond with its owner and needs a lot of attention. It’s a breed that can be difficult to train, but he makes a great watchdog because his bark sounds like it’s coming from a much larger dog, which can be a scary deterrent for burglars. Because this dog will often bark or snap when excited, it’s usually not a great dog for young children.

Miniature schnauzer

A miniature schnauzer can usually bond with an entire family, though it will usually have a favorite owner. It’s also a very clean pet, so if you’re neat and tidy, this might be a good option for you. He’s not necessarily a good companion for other pets or cats because he has a strong urge to chase them. He’s also good with children and very easy to train. A miniature schnauzer is good watchdog because he’s alert and, like the Dachshund, he has a deep bark that sounds like it’s coming from a larger dog.

Of course you should get a dog that fits your lifestyle and family, but don’t get a guard dog just because it looks scary. A noisy dog can be just as much of a burglar deterrent as a big dog, and it can be friendlier toward children and owners. So consider all your options before committing to a new member of the family. And a guard dog shouldn’t be your only type of protection in your home. Keep your family and your furry friend safe with a monitored security system, many of which include pet-friendly motion sensors.

Toy poodle image courtesy of Yasuhiko Ito.

Written by Katherine Torres

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