Not Your Typical Superman, But Could It Work? Are Pit Bulls Good Guard Dogs?

🦴 Updated on July 20th, 2023


When my husband, Rambo and I moved into our new home, we thought we could finally lay in our bed of roses. Rambo is our pit bull btw, and although he is as cute as he is menacing (when he wants) we still had the fear of an intruder coming at night or when we were out of our new place.

Given that he’s been a puppy for most of his life, we didn’t know if Rambo was going to be able to handle those situations. We couldn’t risk just leaving him there to his faith, or to ours if we needed protection from our beloved pet. 

We know that in order to trust him with our security and his own, we needed to answer the question “are pit bulls good guard dogs?”

Pitbulls have a reputation for being tough and even dangerous dogs, so one may wonder: are Pitbulls good guard dogs? Or should you choose another breed to protect your home? Let’s take a closer look. 

Are Pit Bulls Good Guard Dogs? Well…it Depends

Despite their large bodies, intimidating presence, and strong bites, Pitbulls do not make good guard dogs. 

The main reason for this is that Pitbulls are incredibly friendly, even to strangers. So if you have an intruder in your home, they most likely won’t try to chase them away; instead, your Pitbull might see the intruder as a potential friend. 

Pitbulls are not particularly aggressive, either. They may sometimes show aggression toward prey animals or other dogs. But when it comes to humans, they typically do not attack unless you provoke them. 

That said, there are some traits in the Pitbull that people may seek in a guard dog. They are quite observant, so Pitbulls will often bark to alert you if they hear someone in your home. These dogs are also super intelligent, which can make them very easy to train. 

But overall, the Pitbull does not make a fitting guard dog. This breed is best for owners seeking affectionate, playful companion dogs. 

Are Pit Bulls Protective of Their Families? 

Yes, Pitbulls will often protect their owners if they are in danger. These dogs are deeply loving toward their families and will sometimes put their lives at risk to keep them safe. So while they may not be ideal guard dogs, there are many instances of Pitbulls protecting owners. 

However, this trait is not unique to the Pitbull. It is common for dogs, regardless of their breed, to feel a sense of protection toward their owners. 

So, will a Pitbull protect its owner from danger? The answer is “yes,” but that does not necessarily mean they are suitable as guard dogs. 

Are Pitbulls Loyal to Their Owners? 

How loyal are pit bulls? Very loyal! If you’re seeking a dog that will stick by your side, this breed might be the way to go. 

However, a Pitbull’s loyalty can often come to a fault. They are not loyal to just one person, and may often be quick to trust other people. This loyalty may be problematic if you have a home intruder that knows how to gain a Pitbull’s trust. 

So while loyalty is a great trait to look for in a guard dog, a Pitbull’s loyal nature can make it a less suitable protector for your home. 

Can You Train Pitbulls to Be Guard Dogs? 

While they are not the best breed for this role, it is still possible for a Pitbull to be a guard dog. However, you may need to do some training to help your dog become a more protective Pitbull. 

Here are a few tips for how to make a Pitbull protective: 

  • Start training when your Pitbull is a puppy. When you begin at a young age, you’ll have an easier time training your Pitbull to protect your home. 
  • Get help from a dog trainer. A professional may be more effective at teaching your Pitbull how to be a reliable guard dog. 
  • Be sure to socialize your Pitbull. Dogs who don’t socialize with humans may feel fearful around strangers, which can make for an ineffective guard dog. 

Why Pitbulls Make Wonderful Pets 

Pitbulls may not be the best choice for guard dogs, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t wonderful dogs. There are plenty of other benefits that come with owning a Pitbull. 

For instance, Pitbulls are incredibly affectionate dogs. If you’re seeking a pet that will give you lots of attention, a Pitbull is a perfect choice. 

Pit bulls are incredibly smart, too. Having an intelligent dog breed means training will be quite easy, so you can expect a loyal and obedient pet when you adopt a Pitbull. 

Do you need a hunting dog? A Pitbull may be just what you’re looking for. Their strong sense of smell and trainability makes the Pitbull an excellent companion on hunting trips. 

Another benefit to having a Pitbull is that they’re wonderful family dogs. Pitbulls are super energetic and loving. Overall, these dogs can make great playmates for your children. 

Pit Bulls: Are They Dangerous? 

Pitbulls are a controversial dog breed. Fear of these dogs’ bites has made them illegal in several cities across the U.S. But are these dogs as dangerous as people claim? And could their bites make them better guard dogs? 

Statistics suggest that Pitbulls are responsible for more fatal dog attacks than any other dog breed. These fatalities are often because of their strong, powerful jaws. As a result, some people believe that a Pitbull’s dangerous bite could make it a better guard dog. 

However, Pitbulls are not aggressive dogs and attacks are overall rare. They generally do not bite humans unless they feel unsafe. So the chances that Pitbulls will use their powerful bites on intruders are not likely. Overall, the Pitbull’s dangerous bite does not make it a better guard dog. 

Other Guard Dog Breeds to Consider 

If you’ve been wondering “are Pitbulls good watchdogs?”, you may feel disappointed to learn that the answer is “no.” So if you are seeking a pet to protect your home, you may want to look for a different breed. 

Fortunately, there are plenty of breeds out there that can make excellent guard dogs. Here are a few popular guard dog breeds to consider for a safer home. 

  • Akitas 
  • German Shepherds 
  • Boerboels 
  • Rottweilers 
  • Bullmastiffs 
  • Bull Terriers 


Do you still have questions about Pitbulls and their role as guard dogs? Read onward—we might have the answers. 

Are female Pitbulls more protective than males? 

Some people believe that female Pitbulls are more protective than males. However, this theory is merely anecdotal and there is not a lot of research to suggest it. 

Regardless of sex, Pitbulls tend to be friendly toward strangers and even protective Pitbull females are not very suitable guard dogs. Your Pitbull’s protectiveness will primarily depend on how you train and raise them

Are Pitbulls safe dogs for families? 

Pitbulls can be suitable family dogs. They’re very playful, friendly, and incredibly affectionate toward their owners. They’re also pretty gentle and patient, which is ideal for households with children. 

However, it is important to be cautious with Pitbulls as family dogs. Small children can easily provoke dogs into biting, and when Pitbulls bite, it can be dangerous. As with any breed, it’s important to supervise any children who are near your Pitbull. 

Will Pitbulls bark to alert me? 

Yes, Pitbulls are very alert of their surroundings and will usually bark if someone comes into your home. These dogs have a very loud bark as well, so you won’t miss it. 

Aside from alerting their owners, Pitbulls don’t bark very much, so they’re a good choice if you don’t want a noisy dog. 

Will my Pitbull protect me from danger? 

If someone tries to harm you, there is a chance your Pitbull will try to protect you. Dogs are very good at sensing danger, and Pitbulls are no exception. Pitbulls are also incredibly loyal to their owners, so there are many instances of Pitbulls protecting owners from threats. 

Are Pitbulls easy to train? 

Because of their intelligence, Pitbulls are easy dogs to train. They are usually eager to make their owners happy, so you can expect an obedient pet in these dogs. 

As with any breed, it is easiest to train Pitbulls when you adopt them as puppies. So if you are planning on getting a Pitbull as a guard dog, you should begin training them as soon as possible. 

So, Are Pit Bulls Good Guard Dogs? A Summary 

Because of their intelligence, Pitbulls are skillful in several areas. They’re excellent hunters, great family dogs, and even common breeds for therapy and service dogs. 

But are Pitbulls good guard dogs? Unfortunately, the answer is no. Because of their friendly and playful personalities, a Pitbull can’t reliably ward intruders off of your property. 

Of course, it’s still possible for a Pitbull to be a guard dog, especially if you train them from a young age. But overall, there are better dog breeds to choose from when you are seeking a guard dog. 

Recommended Gear for Pitbulls

Picture of Jennifer Grucci | Dog Breeds Expert
Jennifer Grucci | Dog Breeds Expert
Our talented copy editor Jennifer ensures all doggie info published on our site is accurate, clear, and perfectly suited for pet parents of all experience levels. When not reading and writing about dogs, Jennifer enjoys playing with her own pets at home.