Home Protection

Discussion in 'General Mastiff Discussion' started by Jase, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. Jase

    Jase New Member

    Hello everyone. I'm looking for some experienced opinions and feedback from owners of the various mastiff breeds. Here is the situation:

    I travel a great deal for work which leaves my wife and children at home alone. I would feel much better if there were a dog in the home that was not only trustworthy around my family and other pets (proper socialization would be a given) but would not hesitate to attack an intruder if the situation arose. Not stand back and bark, but have the courage to attack and fight an intruder in my home until the problem was solved. This dog would need to be very stable and trustworthy around invited guests, including small children (my boys are 6 and 8 and often have friends over). I'm actually leaning towards purchasing two...one to travel with me sometimes while I am away and one to leave home with the family. Most of the time the two would be in the home together.

    I am an experienced dog owner and have owned Pits, American Bulldogs and English Mastiffs over the years. I still have a 7 year old female EM and she is an awesome family pet, but I honestly don't think she (or most members of that breed) would offer much beyond an intimidating bark and appearance should an intruder decide to fight back. Maybe I'm wrong...let me know if you have observed otherwise.

    I appreciate any feedback you all may have in helping me select the best breed for my needs:)
  2. rokthunder

    rokthunder New Member

    A South African Mastiff, better known as a "Boerboel". Fearless, strong, big and VERY agile. Excellent with kids and family and has a way of knowing friend from foe. Mine just passed away a few months ago and was the best dog I ever had in those regards. I honestly never worried that he could not handle anyone that came onto our property when I was not there. When I am able to get another, this is the breeder that I hope to get one from. He is one of the first to bring them to the United States from South Africa and breed them and probably one of the most knowlegeable about the breed. You can check out his dogs in his link below. Just google this breed and there will be alot of info you can read about this breed. Hope this helps.

    Last edited: Mar 15, 2011
  3. Cody

    Cody Active Member

    umm...I suggest getting a gun and having your wife know how to use it, as well as a good alarm system.
    IF an intruder is willing to break into your house knowing you have a large breed inside, they are armed and prepared to kill the dog, and it is personal. Plain and simple.
    If it wasn't why bother when they can break into a neighbors house without such a pet.
  4. Jase

    Jase New Member

    Rokthunder, thanks for the info. The Boerboel is a breed I am not that familiar with so I will definitely read up on them. They must have been a well kept secret for years as the books and things I have bought in the past pertaining to guardian/working breeds do not mention them. They seem like cool dogs, though.

    Cody, good point. We do have guns and she knows how to use them. My concern with those is the age of my children. They are at the perfect age for a tragedy if they get their hands on a gun...old enough to fire it but too young to be responsible with it. If my wife has easy access to the gun, so do they. I feel better keeping those out of sight and reach for the next few years until they are older and can be taught and trusted to properly and effectively handle a firearm.

    For the record, we don't live in a shady area...it is just a natural concern I have as a husband and father who travels a great deal for work and would like to feel like I have left them with some form of personal protection when I am away. Certainly their is no concern for a potential break in being personal or anything.
  5. Cody

    Cody Active Member

    Understandable, I have children as well, but there is another hazard with a protection trained dog and children.
    I grew up with Schutz trained GSD's as a kid and I can tell you that more then one of my friends ended up with a nip on the butt, after we got into an tussle. Luckily in the 70's it wasn't the big deal that is it now. There was never any broken skin, the dogs had great inhibition but still, had it have been now the outcome wouldn't be that great.
    We have a Cane Corso, which like the Boerboel is a more athletic agile mastiff.
    They are by nature a defensive dog who require a lot of socialization and dedication.
    A well bred Corso should be aloof to strangers, loving and goofy with family and kids able to perceive a true threat.
    They are VERY family oriented animal and are happiest when with their people. I have found extremely easy to train as they have a huge desire to please.
    Their appearance is intimidating enough, but a well bred true to type Corso should not back down from a threat, once they have reached maturity.
    The problem is there, again, are a lot of crappy breeders, so there are a lot of dogs out there with poor temperament, and horrible type.
    It is a great breed, but a huge amount of research needs to be done, and even more training and socializing.
  6. Mongo

    Mongo New Member

    I agree! Just because you do your homework and find a dog with the personality to fit doesnt mean they will have what it takes & "fight" the intruder. And if the intruder is willing to STILL break into your house with such a dog.... then they are prepared for it.

    My advise - get a dog for the family to enjoy. And dont worry about if they will attack an intruder. When he/she matures most likely they will be protective of their home and family. They dont need to "attack" to be affective.

    So my question is what happens if you do your research, find the breed and the temp. and 2-3 yrs go by.... but they arent what you wanted. Their flight instinct is stronger than their fight... then what?
  7. Jase

    Jase New Member

    Are there any breeders you would recommend should I decide to go with Cane Corsos?

    Very true about the protection training thing. I suppose nothing is foolproof. I think the best scenario for me would be a friendly, obedience trained and well socialized family dog, but one that has the genetic makeup to be there when needed and not back down. One that is too eager to bite would be a big problem for sure. That is the one negative I encountered with some of the AB's I have owned in the past. Awesome dogs, but maybe a little too hot for my household right now.
  8. rokthunder

    rokthunder New Member

    Yes Cody for quite awhile the Boerboel was not heard about, only mostly in South Africa where they originated. It was due in part to their small numbers, but then some years ago I believe in the 70's some true Boerboel enthusiast in South Africa came together and realized just how nearly gone this breed was and the task of breeding the Boerboels that were considered the correct temperant,drive and physique were slowy bred bringing today the Boerboel that is present. Believe me, A Boerboel with its natural gaurding instinct is a truly majestic animal. They were originally used for herding which today alot still are, and for protecting the families of the farmer when not at home, they took care of the farmers families. Not to put down the Cane Corsos or other breeds out there. They too will take care of their families as well. Do some research on them and even talk to some breeders like Harris Boerboels. You will not be disapointed with one of these dogs.
  9. Jase

    Jase New Member

    Then I would have a much loved family pet, just as I do now with my EM:)

    Perhaps "attack" was too strong a word...."defend" or "protect" may have been better. This brainstorming started because I am considering another EM as my girl is getting up there in age for this breed and I would like to add another pup or two while she is still around. I am simply wondering if there are breeds that offer many of the positives of the EM but with a little extra in the courage and home defense departments. If not, then I will stick with EM's. I love those dogs.
  10. Cody

    Cody Active Member

    I am a huge fan of the Boerboel to be honest. After the Corso or a working Neo (mythological beast ;) ) , a Boerboel is next. Actually when I started looking at mastiff breeds again it came down to a CC or a BB, only BB breeders seemed harder to find.
    I think either of these breeds, given proper breeding and temperaments would fit the bill.
  11. Sabrina

    Sabrina New Member

    Where do you live?
  12. Jase

    Jase New Member

    Georgia...near the Florida border.
  13. Brad

    Brad New Member

    Don't overlook the Bullmastiff. They were crossed with EM and bulldog to make a more agressive agile dog. They originally used as games keepers dog on engilesh estates to catch poachers, breed not to bight but take down and pin. They are great with kids.
  14. chris410

    chris410 New Member

    I agree with Cody, the good thing is that a large dog will tend to fend away most intruders by simply barking (similar to the sound of a shotgun being chambered) however, a dog will do nothing but be killed should the intruder have a gun. First thing I would recommend is a good alarm system and if you really want to add the dog to be protective I would say having your wife take a shooting class isn't a bad idea to have in addition to the dog. There are safes that have a quick number opening system that are good for keeping children out and still providing access. Also, this sounds silly but a lot of families neglect this, have a family emergency plan as far as contact information, emergency routes for a break in OR fire...etc... and if possible a trusted contact while you are away is a good idea as well.

    That being said, if your Mastiff is of proper breeding...he/she will protect, dogs typically know how to protect and will do so should the situation arise.

    Best wishes
  15. Jase

    Jase New Member

    I think you are right...I will stick with EM's. I am familiar with them, love them, and know they fit perfectly with my family and other pets. Perhaps having two or three in the house instead of just one will help me feel better about it when I am away. A pack of mastiffs and an alarm system should make for a pretty reliable and family friendly safeguard. Thanks for the input everyone:)
  16. dogman#1

    dogman#1 Active Member

    I own Fila Brasileiros, there is no better natural protector hands down. The CAFIB type is usually sharper than the massive, often mixed bred CBKC type , CAFIB are the only type I would ever recommend. They are the way a good mastiff (or any dog for that matter) should be. unlike the watered down mastiff of today filas are still bred, tested and expected to perform like they did. there are some folks that are trying to water the fila down just do your research and you will be o.k. the cons.....you cannot trust them around strangers as a well bred one will not tolerate ANY stranger period. This means if someone that doesnt know the dogs since puppyhood comes over the dog must either go out or get crated, a family member that doesnt know the dog is a stranger, your 15 yr olds friends are strangers, etc, etc...great dog if you are very responsible, disasterous if you are not.
    Good Luck.
  17. PresaDogue

    PresaDogue New Member

    Presa Canario or Fila Brasileiros are hands down your best choices for True guardability andfor them to actually "engage" the intruder. Great with YOUR family, but very wary and suspicious of strangers. Of course, like mentioned above be careful where you get your dog from, make sure they have "working" lines and the temperament is sound. Make sure you have time to train and socialize the dog accordingly as well. Hope this helps. ( Gun wouldn't hurt either )
  18. Ripsmom

    Ripsmom New Member

    I think you need to be careful with any dog that is quick to go after a stranger like the filas and presas... I know some people with filas and yes...they need to be put away when people visit; you have kids in the house and presumably they will have friends over and that could be a disaster with a breed that doesn't tolerate strangers. In my opinion those dogs are best left to adult households that can control the environment without kids coming and going. I think that if someone is stupid enough to come in your house uninvited with a large dog barking in their face they will come in regardless of whether it's an EM, rottweiler, presa or Fila at the door. I think that if they do execute a plan to trespass in spite of a dog then they will be armed and your dog will probably be dead no matter what the breed. I think going for an intimidating looking dog that is good with kids and not overly cautious with visitors is your best bet.
  19. blu3br1ndle

    blu3br1ndle New Member


    Never owned one but I've heard nothing but good things about the Cane Corso.
  20. Enzos Dad

    Enzos Dad New Member

    I have a Male EM and even at 5 months old he is already very protective of the home and the family. From my Understanding of the breed though they are NOT a bite first breed. They will usually pin down or hold an intruder or threat at bay rather then actually attack them which can be just as effective especially if the person is not expecting to come face to face with a 200 pound dog. I read a story not to long ago of an EM holding a burglar captive pinned in a corner for 7 hours till the homeowners returned.

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