During 300 centuries of coexistence with humans, dogs have proven that besides being our best friends, they are also reliable protectors, herders, and guides. Considering that there are hundreds of dog breeds in the world, it’s hard for dog enthusiasts to choose the most suitable one for their farm.
However, farm dog breeds are especially helpful in countryside settings to guard or herd the livestock, protect the farm from predators or just create comfort and make farmers happy after a long and tiring working day.
So if you are considering getting a dog for your farming needs, keep reading because we have a lot to tell you about the best farm dog breeds and the psycho-emotional and mental benefits they can bring to farmers.
- 1 5 Best Farm Dog Breeds
- 2 How to Choose the Most Suitable Farm Dog Breeds?
- 3 3 Main Benefits of Owning Farm Dog Breeds
- 4 Final Thoughts
5 Best Farm Dog Breeds
1. German Shepherd
It’s hard to find a person who does not consider German Shepherds as wonderful dog breeds in general. But did you know that the German Shepherd is also one of the best farm dog breeds? The thing is that their unique personalities and physical qualities make them suitable for the farm.
German Shepherds are known to be active and intelligent dogs, which we agree are necessary traits for a good farm dog. Their hardworking nature is another interesting trait that deserves to be mentioned as it makes German Shepherds suitable for farm life.
2. The Great Pyrenees
Most dog enthusiasts appreciate the beautiful appearance of the Great Pyrenees. And indeed — that’s probably the first thing that naturally comes to mind once you think of this dog. It’s hard to remain indifferent to the amazing appearance and personality of this dog!
But an even more impressive fact about the Great Pyrenees is that they are considered the most hard-working farm dog breeds with an interesting personality. This breed originates from southwestern Europe and initially, they served as shepherds and protected livestock.
Despite their physical features, the Great Pyrenees have a sociable nature. They love to interact with people and can run for hours to guard the perimeter without needing your further guidance. Their calm personality makes them exceptional guard dogs.
Nevertheless, if you decide to own this wonderful dog, be aware that they are not suited for hot climates. That’s why you should make sure that your new resident Great Pyrenees has enough shade and water.
3. Australian Cattle Dog
If you are looking for farm dog breeds that are mentally strong, persistent, and can make decisions independently without additional guidance, the Australian Cattle Dog is the best choice for you. This breed is genetically a herding dog, whose discipline has been inherited from distant generations.
Although they are not loud dogs, their alertness and attention to detail make them wonderful watchdogs. If the Australian Cattle Dog lives with you on the farm, you and your livestock can feel completely safe since their attitude towards predators is truly ruthless.
In comparison to other farm dog breeds, Australian Cattle Dogs are easy to train, but their tendency to mischief requires special patience and caution on your part. We can also say that Australian Cattle Dogs require owners with a strong mentality. Otherwise, this dog’s genes will take over and show a wild nature.
4. Border Collie
We’re sure you’ve seen a Border Collie running across a vast field in Hollywood movies, pointing in the direction of a flock of sheep, don’t you? If you wish to recreate that common scene from movies in real life, getting a Border Collie, one of the best farm dog breeds out there, is probably a great life decision. Why?
Because this is an immensely lovable breed whose intelligence and intuition make them excellent guardians and guiding partners. It should also be noted that these gentle and loving dogs make excellent family dogs. The reason is that they can understand complex instructions thoroughly.
Therefore, these exceptional farm dog breeds will bring numerous benefits to your farm. But still, there’s one thing you should keep in mind: in return, you will need to dedicate plenty of time to stimulating their mental and physical activity.
Let us introduce one more dog breed that you probably haven’t perceived as a farm dog breed. Rottweilers were employed for herding in Germany for centuries, but after herding was banned in some regions of the country, the Rottweiler began to be taken up as a police dog.
However, it is clear that farming skills are still strongly imprinted in the Rottweiler’s genes. That being said, living on a farm with this breed and assigning them the appropriate duties would be a wise move for any farmer out there.
We shouldn’t forget that, other than their benefits for herding, Rottweilers are also excellent family dogs and show special tenderness towards children. In fact, owners of Rottweilers often note that this breed is exceptionally confident, so they appreciate owners who share their confidence. This trait will help you teach them the skills needed to live on a farm and take care of livestock.
How to Choose the Most Suitable Farm Dog Breeds?
If you’re thinking about picking the most suitable dog breed for your farm, the most important thing to consider is that you need to choose a breed with whom you can develop a deep emotional bond. The thing is that this breed is known for their strong independent thinking and enthusiasm to effectively respond to their owner’s commands. Therefore, it would be beneficial for both the farmer and the dog if their personalities and temperaments match one another.
Interestingly, most puppies develop 80% of their brain after 16-20 weeks from their birth. At this age, you can already note their personality type and characteristics, such as being shy, adventurous, calm, anxious, or well-behaved. Sounds impressive, right?
Well, despite these early personality traits, you’ll still need to use behaviorism principles such as positive reinforcement training in order to develop specific habits that are important for farm dogs.
But still, some livestock-guarding breeds such as German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Anatolian Shepherds, Akbash Hounds, Great Pyrenees, Kuvasz, and Central Asian Shepherds were specifically developed for sheep and goat oversight. That could be the reason why they can easily adapt to harsh living conditions and cold climates.
3 Main Benefits of Owning Farm Dog Breeds
1. Livestock Herder
Usually, particular farm dog breeds are mated for a specific purpose – to herd the livestock. But as we mentioned before, genetics play a viral role and you’ll need to provide the proper training and exercise to get the best results. If you properly train farm dog breeds for specific purposes, we assure you that they will find a place not only on the farm but also in your heart!
Livestock herder dogs have a specific intention – to gather and transfer large numbers of livestock safely and efficiently at your command. Although it takes a lot of training, livestock herder dogs can easily move livestock with a hand movement or a vocal command.
2. Reliable Companion
Although the role of farm dogs is to protect the animals, the number one reason people choose to own farm dog breeds is that they are looking for a reliable companion.
Studies have shown that dogs make people happier, lower their stress levels, and make them more productive. Besides, what can compare to the feeling that your companion animal will be by your side at any time, for any purpose?
3. Protectors from Predators and Pests
Some of the main benefits of owning a service dog are that they can help you take care of the farm animals, ensure their safety, and ease your work. But most importantly, they can take care of your safety.
Some farmers work late at night, so having a dog with a brave and strong personality by your side will surely protect you from intruders. Thanks to their keen eyesight, sense of smell, and hearing that can detect danger better than you, these dogs usually bark to warn their owners of potential danger.
Also, we should not forget that if you have a dog on the farm, it will no longer be necessary to use chemicals against pests. It may seem strange at first glance, but the truth is that farm dog breeds are specially trained to ward off pests such as mice and rats. So, if you have entrusted this mission to cats before, you now know that employing dogs for this purpose is also a smart idea.
All in all, having a dog on the farm has numerous advantages, including the possibility to simplifying your work on the farm, as well as personal and psycho-emotional advantages.
Nevertheless, when choosing a dog for your farm, it is essential to consider their characteristics to choose the right breed for your own and your farm’s needs. With their trusting nature and amazing management skills, farm dog breeds are sure to greatly contribute to the prosperity of your farming business!
And the best part?
These dogs will not only be your animal companions but also your life partners, so if you have a farm and want to add a new member to your family, maybe it’s time to welcome any of these farm dog breeds at home!
Nato is a content writer and researcher with a background in psychology who’s eager to explore the wonders of nature. As a travel enthusiast and animal lover, she hopes to inspire others to discover and cherish the beauty and importance of the natural world.