Most dog experts recommend using professional trainers to train your dog to be a guard dog, to ensure that your dog will be able to distinguish between friend and stranger. But by following the steps listed below, you can work alongside a trainer to reinforce your dog's defense skills.
- Teach obedience -- often, positively and frequently. The most important step in training a guard dog is consistency. Ensure that you have enough time and patience to train your dog obedience properly and effectively [source: Young]. Your dog should respond to your every command -- both verbal and hand signals.
- Familiarize your dog with the perimeters of the area. If you're training your dog to protect your house, walk your dog around the outer limits of your house to teach your dog the boundaries.
- Teach educated barking. Your dog must learn who to bark at. Encourage your dog to bark strangers who approach your house. Pet, praise or reward the dog when it barks at a stranger. Train your dog to stop barking at your command. If it doesn't stop barking when you say so, practice by having people come to the door. Don't reward the dog until it stops barking upon command [source: Davis].