Originally Posted By: jarn
i have to admit, last month the police arrested a gang that was mugging and assaulting people in the park where i take the dogs to go potty (though we stay in one corner of the park) and i never worried b/c a)i don't carry valuables when we're out for a walk; b)i don't act like i'm scared (years of feeding and trapping feral cats in nasty downtown alleys (always wear shoes b/c of the needles) taught me that attitude is everything, and most people, other than drunks, will leave you alone if you leave them alone); and c)i had a large dog with me.
i guess i just don't worry about being in a situation where i'd need this, but you guys are really raising some good points, so thank you!
Jarn, I think you and I are very similar people. I do think attitude has alot to do with it.
I have never been a nervous person. When I finally got my own house, I got a labrador retriever. He is definitely not a protection dog. The only thing he is good for is alerting me to noise and maybe his bark would be a deterrant.
My bf has a GSD, Kaper. He was bred and trained to be a PSD, however, they had problems with his tracking and he did not pass his qualification.
I take Kaper running with me and I must say, I love the feeling. People literally cross the street when we are coming (any runners would know how sometimes people just don't want to share the sidewalk with you, no problems with that now). I love how alert he is to everything going on around us. I have never had a situation where he has had to act, but I do feel he would, just by the way he acts I seriously doubt anyone would try anything anyway. I never felt unsafe going on my own, but with him I feel really safe. Now when I take my lab, people will walk right up to him and pet him without even asking.
At home, Kaper is protective. I do believe that if someone came into the house, Kaper would act. If he didn't, he would at least let me know someone was there. And like someone already said, if someone keeps coming after hearing him bark (and Chatham too), I am in serious trouble.
I think in my city(East coast Canada), a PPD would be an excellent idea. We have a relatively low crime rate, break and enters are common but we have seen an increase in home invasions (ie, people are home when they break in) in the past couple of years. Not one that I know of had a dog. Most of the victims were older people who lived on their own. Some were even during the day. The people who did the invasions were drug users looking for some quick cash. I cant' remember how often they were armed. No guns that I know of. That is the ideal situation for a PPD whether he attacks or not. Like someone already pointed out, they are looking for an easy target. A barking dog, especially a large breed like GSD, is not something they want to contend with.
I would like to point out that these did happen in what one would consider "nice neighborhoods". Is it likely to happen around here, no, but no one is completely safe.
I didn't get a GSD for protection, but I definitely enjoy the thought of it.