How Dogs Can Aid Your Personal-Defense Plan

posted on January 19, 2018
sheriff-jim-5-28-15.jpg (1)

As most of you are well aware, a personal defense plan is a multi-layered thing and guns are only a small part of the big picture. The rest includes awareness, flashlights, cell phones, first-aid kits, locks, house lights, burglar alarms and on and on. But in the midst of considering all of the things that can be used to protect ourselves, our family, and our homes, let's not forget some of the very simple defensive tools. For instance, a common and rather pleasing tool at our disposal is Canis familiaris: the common dog.

Of course, those of us who enjoy canine companionship will assure you that dogs are not at all common. Dogs can be trained to respond in a rather forceful manner to anyone who threatens to do us harm. If that is your desire, by all means go to one of the professional schools and have your dog trained properly. Crooks that aren't afraid of a double-barreled shotgun will often run up the white flag when a defense dog gets ahold of them.

But I have never bothered to attack train one of my dogs. Instead, I rely on them as an early-alert system. Years of shooting guns—and having some go off quite close to my headhave left my hearing just a bit on the weak side. OK, I don't hear very well at all.

My dogs let me know when someone, anyone, is around the house. I suppose that my friends and the various delivery people think it is nice of me to greet them at the front gate. They have my two dogs to thank for that. When we are out and about in the Jeep, they let me know when someone walks too close to the car.

To be forewarned is to be forearmed. The same dogs can let me know when someone approaches, long before crooks can begin to put their attack plan into action. I can greet them, toomaybe not in the same mannerbut I will greet them after a fashion.

In addition, where I live, it is not uncommon for me to kill 4-6 rattlesnakes in my yard, each season. For this reason, my dogs have been trained in rattlesnake avoidance. You can bet they raise Holy He... - that is they alert me when a rattler is trespassing. And, wouldn't you know it, I have begun to have trouble hearing a snake rattle. But my dogs can and have saved me from snakebite on several occasions.

Our personal defense plan is, and should be, a multifaceted thing. Don't forget to consider the faithful dog. They've been looking after us humans for quite a long time.


shooter at the range
shooter at the range

Skills Check: Present Arms

We refer to the draw stroke as the presentation at Gunsite. It’s a better explanation than simply “drawing” the pistol, because it describes the act of presenting the pistol from the holster to the target or threat. In our “basic,” five-day pistol class we expect students to present the pistol and make hits on targets from 3 to 7 yards away in 1.5 seconds. Most students can do this in two or three days of training.

First Look: Springfield Armory Hellcat Pro 9 mm Pistol with Shield Red-Dot Optic

Springfield Armory now offers its popular Hellcat Pro 9 mm pistol with a factory-installed Shield SMSc red-dot optic.

Henry Celebrates 25 Years of Gunmaking with Limited-Edition Rifles

Two limited-edition rifles celebrating 25 years for Henry are being released.

First Look: Elite Survival Systems Hip Gunner Pack

Carry your defensive firearm with you in a pack, without carrying off-body.

Mental Focus vs. Mental Awareness

Shooting at the very edge of your skills envelope requires tremendous mental focus and well-developed shooting awareness. However, some shooters believe that shooting awareness and mental focus are one in the same. They are not. Using pistol shooting (combat or competition) as an example, what is the difference between the two and how can it help you hone your shooting skills to a razor’s edge?

First Look: PHLster Holsters Modular Wedge Kit

Mix and match these soft and durable foam pieces for a perfect holster fit.


Get the best of Shooting Illustrated delivered to your inbox.