Working dogs have roots as farm dogs and draft animals, literally pulling their weight for their owners. This group is made up of a diverse set of breeds that can perform a wide variety of tasks. Working breeds are study, powerful, and focused dogs that can be found functioning as military dogs, police dogs, guard dogs, service dogs, and farm dogs. They are highly intelligent and fearless, though their personalities range from very serious to easy-going. Working dogs are large, and they require plenty of space to move and lots of opportunities to exercise. If you want to make a working breed happy, give him a job to do around the house, whether it’s pulling kids in a wagon or standing guard while the family enjoys an afternoon on the deck. Some owners find their working dogs enjoy walks a little bit more if they are given a weighted vest to wear.
In order to raise a happy, even-tempered working dog, they must be given consistent training and a structured, scheduled home life. These dogs were bred to work alongside strong leaders in stressful situations, and they thrive in homes where there is a good sense of order. Owners should understand that working breeds are protective of their territory and their families. Without proper training, this protectiveness can become a problem. It’s important to properly train and socialize a working dog to obey all commands and to know how to properly address and interact with guests in the home.
Some working dogs come with short, smooth, no-fuss coats, but many breeds in this group are of Nordic or mountainous origin, and have thick fur that sheds heavily. While these breeds are not recommended for inexperienced dog owners, with consistent training, proper exercise, and good structure in the home, working dogs make excellent family companions.
Featured Working Dog Breeds