Dogs are a man’s best friend, but they can also be a man’s security guard. Actually, a dog can be an entire family’s security guard. With an impeccable sense of smell and sensitive ears, dogs can be aware of a threat long before you. Sure, they do the adorable thing of wagging their tails and running around the house when a loved one pulls into the driveway, but they can also do the very helpful thing of growling, barking, and sounding the alarm when a not-so-loved individual shows up. That being said, dogs are just four-legged friends in the end and are capable of human error—or, rather, canine error. Here are ways dogs help and hinder home security.
They scare off burglars with barking
Burglars don’t typically want to mess with a house where there is a dog inside. Even if humans aren’t home, the sounds of the dogs barking could alert neighbors and the entire neighborhood of a problem. Simply having a “Beware of dog” sign could send a burglar on his way.
They sound false alarms
Dogs, however, bark at a lot more than burglars. They also bark at squirrels, garbage trucks, UPS delivery personnel, and another doggys friend they see out the window. They can, in essence, sound a lot of false alarms so you start disregarding all their barking—even when there is an intruder. Get to know your dog’s distinct barks and body language. You’ll see that he has a different bark for actual threats. Generally, if Fido won’t stop barking for a long time and he is growling, you should be on the lookout.
They can attack intruders
Your dog could potentially take an intruder down and make it difficult for him to escape before the police arrive. It’s hard for anyone to run fast with bite marks in his legs. Dogs can harm and detain intruders long enough for you to grab your own weapon of self-defense, too.
They can dig holes beneath fences
Dogs can, unfortunately, be little escape artists who dig holes beneath fences. If those holes are big enough, then they can also create security vulnerabilities around your perimeter. If you do have a dog, check your yard regularly to make sure he hasn’t dug holes beneath gates and fences.
You can’t hear who is at the door
Dogs are like a second doorbell. Even after someone rings your doorbell, you can count on your pups to bark for several minutes. That means when you yell, “Who is it?” you can’t hear the visitor’s response, over your dog’s bark. Don’t just open the door to find out who it is, though. Look through your peephole, or your smart doorbell surveillance.
They notify you early of visitors
Before someone even steps onto your front lawn, your dogs will notify you. They can sense people much sooner than you can, which gives you a chance to grab your smart phone, and, using your synced-up home automated system, lock all your doors at a push of a button if you feel threatened.
A dog can chase a burglar down, fast. If you have a large, strong dog, he can likely pounce on the thief that just took a package from your porch much quicker than you can get the police to arrive.
They chew on wires
Don’t forget that dogs—puppies in particular—love to chew on wires, including those that power your security system and surveillance cameras. Make sure these are tucked away from the jaws of curious canines.
Dogs can be great security assets, so long as you know their weaknesses and strengths.