Re: Number of protection dogs
Well, I love the GSD breed for their loyalty and ease of training amoung many other things but I will tell you that the illusion that the dog would protect me is good enough. My theory has always been that if an intruder continues to come into my home with GSD signs outside and a GSD barking when they make a sound, that intruder has every intention on continuing into the home and either killing the dog or you or both. That intruder probably has a knife or gun and the dog would be no match anyway. For those middle of the road "guys" the illusion should be enough as it is easier to move onto someone else without the dog.
When I raised pups for a Guide Dog school, they used to press the idea that training your dog to listen well on command will make someone else question what your dog really knows and what their reaction would be. For example:
A stranger knocks on your door, your dog barks and you put the dog in a sit or down stay to your side and open the door (the dog is in a stay and no longer barking per your command). That person doesn't know A) If that dog is trained to attack on command as he listened so well to your other commands or B) Will the dog attack without command C) If the dog has no protection skills and is just well behaved. Better to keep that stranger guessing.
When I lived in a rough end of town, the "kids" (maybe 14 to 20 yr olds) would bark at my dog and I when we walked by their houses. I took that for a short period of time, then when I heard the first kid bark, I would cross to their side of the street ever so confidently and say, oh, did I heard you say you wanted to pet my dog? They would all scatter. Finally the barking stopped and they would ride their bikes/skate boards, etc by me and ask if the dog bites. I would hold the dog tight (as if to hold him back) and say, "only if he needs to. Do you wanna try to get close to me and find out?" I would ALWAYS get a NO WAY! response and they would take off. They never knew for sure what my dogs would do but they respected the dogs enough not to try.
Also, when we first moved to "that" neighborhood, I had just gotten home from Christmas dinner with the dogs and (out back was a barn/garage with woods behind it) one of my dogs was restless, uneasy, jumping up to the window sill. I thought maybe he was gonna be sick so I leashed him to let him out and when I cracked the door, he slammed passed me so fast I had to drop his leash or I would go butt over tea kettle down a flight of stairs. He jumped all the way to the bottom slammed the screen door open at the bottom and ran barking to the barn (where there where dirt bikes, a car, snow mobile, tools, etc) as I watched a siloette run around the back of the barn into the woods with my dog in hot pursuit. I was screaming for him but no response, i am thinking oh my god he's gonna kill my dog. I screamed for my neighbor to call the police and finally my dog returned all fine but on guard. I knew **** well someone was in the barn for a bad reason. The cop walked into the barn took his flashlight alone,walked about 30ft into the woods, turned around and said, "I think you saw a deer". WHAT!!!!!!!!!!! Last I knew deer didn't walk on two legs and hang out in barns, alone. I guess it was Rudolph stealing toys for children. After that night, I NEVER go outside at night without one of my dogs.
Sorry, I'm long winded tonight!
Tina & the K9 Krew