This guest post was provided by World Dog Finder.

 Through interesting articles and daily fun facts, provides education for breeders, animal shelters and new dog owners to that everybody who is lucky enough to live with a dog is well informed about what to expect, what to do, and what not to do in order to keep your best buddy happy, healthy and safe.

Guard dogs have played a vital role in human history: We've used them for personal protection, war, and livestock protection for thousands of years, and these dogs have proven their worth many times over.

According to Stats SA, there were 1,2 million instances of house break-ins in South Africa in 2019/2020. Statistics have shown that homes with large guard dogs are less likely to be broken into, and guard dogs are the best for the job. These dogs should be large and powerful, which will make them efficient at their work, but they might be harder to handle and train, especially if you're an inexperienced dog owner.

Needs of a guard dog

Keep in mind that having a guard dog will have its advantages as well as disadvantages. You might get a personal protector that will ease your mind or protect your livestock from predators, but they are also often large and need plenty of protein-rich food – so keep in mind that the amount they can eat can become rather expensive.

These dogs will require plenty of space and quite a bit of training. New and inexperienced owners should start learning about handling large guard dogs as soon as possible because mishandled dogs can and most likely will develop behavioral problems.

Not all dog breeds are available worldwide, nor could they all endure the warm climate of South Africa. If you are looking to get a powerful, loyal guard dog, here's a list of the best guard dog breeds in South Africa.

1. Boerboel

 The Boerboel is a South African dog breed that was specifically developed with guarding in mind.

This is an impressive breed and certainly one of the best guarding breeds in the world. These dogs are fiercely loyal to their owners and will stop at nothing if they feel their family is endangered.

2. German Shepherd

German Shepherds are one of the best service dogs in the world, and there is a good reason behind it. These dogs are loyal, obedient, intelligent, and capable of performing complicated tasks and commands.

They are a natural herding breed that has a “built-in” guarding instinct. German Shepherds make excellent guard dogs and pets; it is up to you to raise them in a way that suits your lifestyle, needs, and family.

3. Rottweiler

Rottweilers are an elegant, strong, protective breed - but they are not suited to owners that don’t know how to handle them.

They are territorial and will not tolerate anybody crossing their territory if they weren’t invited by their owners. Rotties are also relatively smart, and if you know how to handle them, they can be a rewarding breed to have.

They love their owners and are loyal to their families. However, dogs that are not adequately handled might develop behavioral problems – usually the fault of an irresponsible owner.

4. American Pit Bull Terrier

To some people, Pit Bulls have quite a negative reputation, but the truth is, these dogs can make excellent pets and loyal guard dogs.

Pit Bulls are terriers, and that means they need to be properly exercised and trained. It is impossible to expect an untrained dog to know how they should behave. These dogs are smart, hard-working, and territorial.

They will make wonderful guardians if they are treated right, and their owner invests time in their training and development.

5. Giant Schnauzer

The Giant Schnauzer is the largest member of the Schnauzer family.

This breed is over 400 years old and has been used throughout history for various guarding duties. These dogs are intelligent, hard-working, and very energetic – so make sure you can provide them with plenty of activities while they are off their guarding duty.

Getting a guard dog

Getting and training a guard dog isn't a simple task. Don't only focus on what the dog will you for you; think about what you need to provide for your dog.

They need exercise, space, plenty of nutrient-rich food, training, and of course, love. Dog ownership is a two-way street, and you'll get out of the relationship as much as you put into it.

Want to know more about the best guard dog breeds, not just in South Africa but in the world? If you're interested in reading more, check out this article - Best Guard Dog Breeds.