Will A Pit Bull Protect Its Owner? Owners Tell Real Stories

People adopt dogs for various reasons, including looking for a loyal companion, a fun, playful pet, or a cuddle machine for those lonely days. But no matter the cute reason someone might have for adopting a dog, everyone always wonders that if push comes to shove, will their dog protect them?

Will a Pit Bull protect its owner? A Pit Bull will protect its owner. Pit Bulls are very loyal, and if they sense danger coming to their people, they will try to protect them. Protecting their owner doesn’t always mean attacking others as they might give a warning bark. It mostly depends on how you train your dog to guard you.

Just like most dogs, Pit Bulls will not just stand and watch someone they love get hurt or attacked. But what really drives them to act, and can you count on them to provide protection for your family? Keep reading to find out more.

Are Pit Bulls Protective of Their Owners?

a photo of a pit bull with its owner to show if a pit bull will protect its owner

All dogs are protective of their owners, and Pit Bulls are no exception. Despite their brutal history in dog fighting, breeders have worked hard to ingrain affectionate behavior into Pit Bulls. And they have marvelously succeeded! 

Nowadays, Pit Bulls are one of the most affectionate dog breeds you can adopt. They will always stay by your side, and if they sense danger, you can count on them to warn you and try to keep you safe.

Are Pit Bulls Protective of Their Families?

Pit Bulls are very family-oriented dogs. They bond pretty quickly with their families and are extremely protective.

Even though they are not likely to attack a person to protect their families without a solid reason, they will warn their families of danger if they sense it coming from an outsider or another dog.

Are Pit Bulls Protective of Children?

Pit Bulls are so good with children that some people call them “Nanny dogs”! Part of their reputation for being great family dogs is how they quickly bond with children and treat them almost like their own.

A Pit Bull is very likely to be extra protective of the children in their family than the adults. Not to say they don’t love their adults, because they absolutely do, but they just have a soft spot for little humans.

Are Pit Bulls Naturally Good Protection Dogs?

The answer to this question depends on your definition of protection dogs and what exactly you expect your Pit Bull to do.

If you mean will your Pit Bull attack an intruder to your house or a potential burglar? Then the answer is probably no. 

Pit Bulls are very loving, and if they are properly socialized, then they are more likely to ask the intruder for pets and treats than to attack them.

If you want your Pit Bull to act as a guard dog, they will need extensive and intense training from a professional to be able to distinguish between people and when to be nice, and when to warn their owners of potential danger.

But it’s very important to get your dog a good, sensible trainer because if your dog is trained to attack first and ask questions later, this might get you into a lot of trouble. If your neighbors get scared of your Pit’s behavior, they might call animal control and get your Pit taken away. So just be careful how you train them.

Can Pit Bulls Protect You from People?

Technically, Pit Bulls can protect you from other people. If they sense a danger to you or if someone tries to attack you, your Pit Bull’s instinct will be to protect you.

But without training, your Pit Bull might either end up seriously hurting the other person or might now understand that this person is dangerous at all.

Can Pit Bulls Protect You from Other Dogs?

Pit Bulls can protect you from other dogs because they are stronger, faster, and more courageous than most other dog breeds. Pit Bulls were originally bred to fight and take out almost any attacker or prey, even if they’re bigger in size.

You need to be careful with your Pit Bulls behavior around other dogs though. Because Pit Bulls are generally less tolerant with other dogs than they are with humans.

They won’t attack for no reason, but they can get riled up pretty quickly. Sadly, a lot of people think that Pitties snap and attack people for no reason, which is not true. I discuss the myth of Pit Bulls snapping here and the truth behind it.

Can Pit Bulls Protect You from Snakes?

Pit Bulls can protect you from snakes, but it’s not a special ability in Pit Bulls; almost any dog can do that.

You need to keep in mind that if a snake is dangerous to you, then it is dangerous to your Pit Bull as well. Pit Bulls just can’t tell how dangerous a snake is, and their instinct to protect you will always come first.

If your Pit Bull attacks a snake and gets bitten, you need to immediately take them to the vet to administer anti-venom. Some snake bites can be fatal, and it might be a life-or-death situation for your dog.

Can Pit Bulls Protect You from Coyotes or Wolves?

They can protect you from one coyote or wolf but not two. Pit Bulls have a stronger bite force than coyotes and can probably win a fight against one coyote at a time with some hardship.

But the thing is, coyotes and wolves travel in packs and are rarely seen solo. One Pit Bull against a pack of coyotes or wolves will probably end up dead. You can learn more about Pit Bulls vs wolves here.

5 Reasons Why Pit Bulls Are Protective of Their Owners

Now that we’ve established that Pit Bulls will protect you against almost anything, even though they are not the best guard dogs, let’s see what reason they have to make them act all protective.

Pit Bulls are super loyal

“A dog is a guy’s best friend” is never as true as it is with Pit Bulls. Pit Bulls are very loyal to the people they love, and they will never betray you.

Their loyal nature will always be their number one reason for standing up for you and being always on your side.

Pit Bulls are family-oriented dogs

Pit Bulls are very quick to get attached to their families. Just a little while after you adopt a Pit Bull, it will consider you and basically everyone who lives in your household as family.

And like all other dogs, Pit Bulls would do anything to protect their families and especially the children.

Pit Bulls are very affectionate

Pit Bulls are basically a big-sized cuddle machine. Despite all the things you hear about Pit Bulls being aggressive or dangerous dogs, the truth is they love nothing more than a good old cuddle.

Pit Bulls are very affectionate dogs, and these feelings of love they have for their owners are the main fuel to their protective nature.

Pit Bulls are bold

Due to the reason they were bred back in the day, which is to fight other dogs, Pit Bulls are naturally very bold. With their goofy smiles and need to cuddle all the time, the true nature of Pit Bulls will always leave a mark.

They are not the kind to back off from a fight and will usually hold on till they win. This can put them in dangerous situations as well, but they just don’t know when to quit.

Pit Bulls are very smart

Pit Bulls are known to be very smart dogs, which will balance out their instinct to attack or physically fight someone. Their intelligence helps them think and decide on the best way to help you in each situation.

If you are being attacked, they will attack back. If there is a fire, they would drag you out or bark to get help, and so on. They are smart enough to assess the situation before acting.

5 Signs Your Pit Bull is Being Protective of You

You know your Pit Bull will protect you and your family, and you know why they would do it. It is time to learn to recognize the signs of your Pit Bull getting protective.

These signs will help ease your mind about the willingness of your Pit Bull to protect you and act as an extra alert that something around your Pit Bull might be off and that is why they are being protective.

Your Pit Bull is acting like a guard

We have established that Pit Bulls are not guard dogs by nature, so if your Pit Bull is acting like one, then they feel like they need to show up for you.

They may stand guard by your door or just stay close to you to guard you against danger.

This is nice and all but your need to be careful because if they do it too often, it might be a sign of them getting overprotective and the possibility of them hurting someone they deem dangerous when they are not is higher than normal.

Your Pit Bull is making a lot of eye contact

Pit Bulls do not make regular eye contact, but they don’t avoid it either. Both signs are warning signs of something being up with your Pit Bull.

If your dog is in a protective or even a bit aggressive mood they will make constant eye contact with the aggressor as a way to intimidate them and warn them to back off.

Your Pit Bull is always sitting on your feet

Dogs sit on their owner’s feet as a way to show possessiveness and that this person is under their protection. They are more likely to act like that when there are other dogs present, and they feel like they need to make things clear.

In some cases, your Pit Bull might act with aggression if someone comes near you, even if there is no apparent harm.

Your Pit Bull is constantly taking your stuff

Pit Bulls who are attached to their owners would make a habit of taking something of theirs to cuddle to when their owner isn’t present.

This object can be anything that smells like you because dogs have a strong sense of smell and associate almost anything around them with the smell. This habit shows how much your dog cares for you and protects you.

This can also go the other way, where your dog will give you something of theirs, like a toy, to keep as a show of mutual trust.

Your Pit Bull is always excited to see you

If your Pit Bull is always excited to see you when you enter a room, come back from work, or when someone even just calls your name, then they’re head over heels in love with you and would protect you with everything they have.

This is the most common sign that a dog would be protective of its owner. A pure show of love and affection.

Can You Train Your Pit Bull to Protect You or Your Family?

You can train your Pit Bull to act as a guard dog and protect you and your family, but that is a slippery slope. Pit Bulls are prone to becoming too aggressive, and if you train them specifically to act as protection, not just depend on their natural instinct, things might go a bit too far.

You can use some training methods to make your Pit Bull more alert to danger and teach them to bark on command or other useful commands.

But due to prejudice against Pit Bulls, if your Pit Bull attacks someone or even another dog brutally, that might cause a lot of legal problems for both you and your Pit Bull.

What to Do If Your Pit Bull Is Overprotective?

If you feel like your Pit Bull’s protective nature is getting out of hand, then you need to start implementing some techniques to teach it to cool it.

Some protection is nice and all, but being overprotective can actually hurt someone.

Keep others safe

While you figure out the best way to train your dog to be protective in an acceptable manner, you need to make sure that others around you are safe.

When you have guests over and feel like your dog might act out, use one of these 3 techniques:

  1. Leash them – Before you let your guests in, put a leash on your dog. You can leave the leash loose as long as your Pit Bull is behaving well, but it’s a safety measure in case things go south.
  2. Muzzle them – This is a further step you can take if you believe your Pit Bull might bite someone. A muzzle isn’t super comfortable for a dog, so you need to ease them into it with time and adjust it, so they’re as comfortable as possible when they have to wear it.
  3. Separate them – If none of the above work, then you just need to keep your dog in a separate room while you have people over. Make sure you leave them enough snacks, water, and toys to keep them occupied and happy.

As for muzzles, choosing the right muzzle can be easier said than done. It needs to be strong enough to work as a muzzle but it also must be comfortable and humane for the dog. I have a complete guide on the best muzzles for Pit Bulls here that you should definitely check out.

The muzzle I have for my dogs is the CollarDirect Pitbull Leather Dog Muzzle. Not only does it actually look good on my Pit Bulls, but it is also very durable, very comfortable, and well-made especially given its affordable price.

Start obedience training

Teaching your Pit Bull to follow commands such as ‘’Sit’’, ‘’Stay’’, ‘’Roll’’ and ‘’Come here’’ are very important. They help you control their behavior in public and in private. Using rewards such as treats, toys, and pats is very helpful in obedience training. 

Make sure you keep training even after they grow up. A Pit Bull that knows to always follow these commands will be much easier to control around others. If the training isn’t successful at home, then consider taking them to a training facility.

Socialize your Pit Bull 

Most problems with dogs, such as being overprotective or aggressive, come from them not being properly socialized. Socializing your Pit Bull by taking them to dog parks, organizing play dates, and going for walks teaches them to be comfortable around other people and build a sense of trust.

Your Pit Bull will be less likely to feel overprotective of you among friends if they get to meet them often and are used to dealing with people other than you.

Pit Bulls are naturally friendly dogs, and with constant and proper socialization, they will learn to trust people more.

What to Do If your Pit Bull Attacks Another Person or Pet?

Pit Bulls are very strong, and if they attack a person or another pet, whether it is to protect you or for any other reason, you need to act immediately. Your immediate reaction to the situation can be a matter of life or death for both the victim and your Pit Bull. Here are some things to do if your Pit attacked another dog or person:

  1. Stay calm – It’s important to keep your cool in dangerous situations. If you panic, you won’t be able to think straight and do what’s needed to help your dog or its victim. Having a clear and steady mind is crucial for containing the situation.
  2. Distract your Pit Bull with water – Dogs love water and you can use that to distract them for long enough for the victim to run. You can use a garden hose that’s sitting nearby, turn on sprinkles and or even get a bucket of water and dump it on them. This might not be available at all times but if it is, it will be a great help.
  3. Make some noise – If there is no water nearby, then distract them with a sudden and loud noise. Honking your car or banging on something metal can do the trick. But be careful because the noise will distract it for a smaller amount of time than water and you will need to act quickly.
  4. Separate the dogs temporarily – You obviously won’t be able to drag your angry Pit Bull to another room while they’re still riled up but you can use objects around you to make a barrier between them and their victim. For example, drape a blanket over your Pit or use a chair to separate the two dogs.
  5. Use the “Wheelbarrow” method – Physical intervention is always dangerous so don’t use this unless you have no other options. Some dog trainers suggest using the “wheelbarrow” method where two people grab the back legs of both dogs simultaneously and drag them away until they can no longer see or attack each other.

Stories from Real Pit Bull Owners

To get a real sense of what it’s like to have a Pit Bull protect you, check out these stories.

This woman shares her story on Reddit bout how her Pit Bull is a hero.

“He started moving across the street quickly and wouldn’t break eye contact with me. I started backing away like I was ready to run but, my 70-pound blue pit bull mix started growling and snarling. Somehow my dog knew shit was not right at all.”


The following video presents the perfect discipline of a trained dog. It shows that the Pit Bull was supposed to guard a 9-year-old boy, but he was not supposed to attack until the boy was actually attacked.

Related Questions 

At What Age Do Pit Bulls Become Protective? 

Pit Bulls become protective as their aggression starts, which tends to be between the ages of 2 and 3 years old. Their loving and trusting nature towards humans stays the same as they were puppies, but they start to distrust other dogs.

Do Pit Bulls Turn On Strangers? 

Pit Bulls do not turn on strangers without reason at all. Pit Bulls are very loving and affectionate and get used to humans very quickly. They are more likely to ask a stranger to play with them, give them a treat or even cuddle than attack.

Are Pit Bulls Loyal to Their Owners?

Pit Bulls are very loyal dogs to their owners. Most dogs are considered very loyal as it is the nature of dogs to be good companions to humans and to look after them. Pit Bulls are no different. They are affectionate and loyal.

Are Female Pit Bulls More Protective?

Female Pit Bulls are more protective because of their motherly instincts. That is why they tend to be better guard dogs than male Pit Bulls. But with Pit Bulls, male or female, it all comes down to training because they are not naturally bred to be guard dogs and would rather play.

Are Pit Bulls Attached to Their Owners?

Pit Bulls get very attached to their owners and tend to form strong bonds with them quickly. Pit Bulls are known to be friendly, protective, and fiercely loyal dogs. They are also very physical and love to cuddle with their humans.

Helpful Resources

How to find a good guard dog

PitbullsHome Personally-Tested Picks for Pitties:

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