In Search of the Best Dog to Keep Bears Away

Whether you live on the road or go outdoors for a hike or hunting, having a companion with you gives you that sense of safety as you roam around, and what is much better than the most loyal friend known to man- but a dog. 

Man and dog have long had that fortified relationship shared ever since the beginning of time. The loyal behavior of a dog supports man’s adventurous nature and has even been proven more beneficial in the long run. 

Among the most common and perhaps even terrifying beast encounters man has to face when outdoors is the attack of bears. Now, before we begin, bears are naturally tame. The truth is, they will not attack you unless you make the first move. However, bears are also highly intuitive and territorial. Now, if you are walking along with wild territories, it is most likely that the bear will assume that you are trespassing into his property. So to his defense, he positions himself for an attack. This is where the brave dog comes into a great play. Like bears, dogs are territorial too, and somehow, territorial animals have a shared language that empowers them to respect each other. 

Hence, when a bear sees a man and hears that a barking dog is with him, the bear immediately understands that the man does not mean any harm and proceeds to step away. 

Fascinating, isn’t it? As supposedly mind-blowing this fact of nature is, it also helps to know that not all dogs have the capacity to stand up to a bear. 

Listed herein are some of the exceptional outdoor dog breeds in case you are In Search of the Best Dog to Keep Bears Away: 


The Caucasian Shepherd is a dog breed known for being courageous and strong.

The Caucasian Shepherd is a dog breed known for being courageous and strong. It has been noted to have high instincts of being a family protector. 

In the earlier times, Caucasian Shepherds are known to be particularly trusted with protective duties. 

They were first found breeding upon the Caucasus Mountain region, hence the name that they are known for. Other names for this breed of dog include Russian Bear Dog, Caucasian Ovcharka Dog, and the Baskshan Parly. This breed has different variants, but all have that common notable characteristic of being a born protector. 

Another important fact about the Caucasian Shepherd is that it is highly territorial. When there is a fight, or if he needs to protect his territory, he does so fiercely. They have that stubborn nature that makes it harder for them to follow specific rules that do not go along with their instincts. If not adequately introduced, Caucasian Shepherds may behave aggressively around strangers. 

The average height of a Caucasian Shepherd is assumed from between 24 to 34 inches and weighs between 80 to 220 pounds. This dog is huge and survives well in the outdoors. 

What is more, with their territorial nature, they are among the perfect breeds by hunters, hikers, and those who love to go outdoors to have themselves practically protected from bears. The usual life span of Caucasian Shepherds lasts from between 10 to 12 years, so this means that your dog will have that much time to learn more about you and protect you, and of course, you have that much time to share your life and care for it. 

TWO: Karelian Bear

Karelian Bear Dog - the camping guard
Karelian Bear Dog

Unlike the Caucasian Shepherd Dog, the Karelian Dog is relatively smaller. But this breed should not be mistaken for its supposed weakness just because of its size. The truth is, because of its intelligence, the Karelian Bear Dog can create strategies that will certainly protect its owner. 

Its height ranges between 19 and 23.5 inches and weighs 44 to 49 pounds. It is also known to live from between 11 to 13 years. 

Although it has strong hunting instincts, the Karelian Bear Dog is more trainable than the Caucasian Shepherd dog. They cooperate well with trainers and owners and learn to adapt fast to the condition of life that they are subjected to. This means that if you are a person who spends time outdoor a lot, then bringing your Karelian Bear Dog with you will undoubtedly give him an edge of the training that he needs for him to develop that protective instinct towards you. 

It has also been observed that Karelian Bear Dogs respond well to kids and are very protective of the young ones, especially if they are part of the owner’s family. 

Like other large-built dogs, Karelian Bear Dogs are also territorial. But unlike others, they can identify situations fast and control their aggression when they feel that there is no danger to those they are protecting. So if you have a friend and you introduce your dog to him correctly, the Karelian Dog breed quickly identifies with the owner’s facial expression and body language if the person is an intruder or not. 

Another interesting fact about this breed of dog is that it can change the way he barks depending on what he sees or what danger he wants to warn his owner of. Because of its intelligence, it has a more complex form of communicating its role with the owner, therefore sounding a warning or warding off bears from the territory he protects. 

However, the Karelian Bear Dog hops into a challenge when faced with other dogs. So, unless they are properly introduced, this breed’s instinct is to challenge the other for territorial purposes. If the other dog happens to be an equally aggressive breed, then a fight might emerge. Hence, when introducing your Karelian bear dog to other dogs of your friends, make sure to set the environment properly and make good introductions by showing that you have a connection to the owner of the other dog that he must respect. Petting the other dog during the opening may not be a good idea as it may send a signal to your dog that you are replacing him, which of course, will drive our dog into aggression. 

THREE: Hound Dogs

Hound dog breeds come in many variations. They may be smaller than other hunting dogs, but they can do what their more prominent counterparts offer. An even more significant thing is that they can also be treated as casual dogs, brought to accompany you in your walks or your morning runs because of their height and build. 

For instance, among the most prominent variants of the hound dog breed is the English foxhound which is known for its medium to large build with a height of 24 inches and a weight between 55 to 75 pounds. They are capable of running long lengths and work better in packs when it comes to attacking other animals when hunting. 

But if your only goal is to ward off bears, then one English Foxhound will do. 

This breed is also known for its stamina and a strong sense of smell that makes it best for search and rescue operations. Not only will you be protected from bears, but you are also assured that if anything happens to you as you stroll out, your dog has your back.  

You might want to check another type of hound dog is, the Norwegian Elkhound. Don’t be misled by its charming appearance and friendly disposition. 

Its history says so much about what a Norwegian Elkhound could do. It has been known to have a versatile capacity to adjust to the environment. Used by Vikings, this breed was trained to hunt for bears. They do not shy away from big black bears; the truth is, they find it challenging to face one. 

The Norwegian Elkhound is considerably unmatched with solid stamina and strength, primarily defensive and hunting skills. 

But is it suitable for those who have families, especially children? Many of those who have tried rearing and training a Norwegian Elkhound has nothing but great to say about the attitude and disposition of this dog breed. Its defensive skills are matched by its intelligence and its capacity to work well with children. Loving and loyal, this breed will surely be the best watchdog for the whole family, not only to ward off bears but to be the protection and loyal friend everybody needs. 

The last hound dong in this list is the Treeing Walker Coonhound. It is a large hound dog that stretches up to27 inches and weighs between 50 to 70 pounds. 

Although, as noted through history, this hound dog has been trained to hunt tree raccoons, its smelling capacity has been known to adjust well depending on what it is trained to recognize. Hence, if you have a Treeing Walker Coonhound, you might want to spend more time with it to train it on what a bear smells like, how it behaves, or where it may be found. This way, the dog will adapt to the environment and immediately ward off bears as desired. 

It is a powerful and athletic breed of hound dog known for its speed and stamina. It does not cower in the face of larger counterparts, even bears, especially when protecting its territory and its family. 

Remember, though, that if you choose to tend to this type of dog, you need to make sure to bring it out for exercise regularly, as this is part of the dog’s extensive physical maintenance. 

The reward of tending and training a Treeing Walker Coonhound, not just for your protection against bears but also to have a loyal friend right beside you, is an affectionate and loving companion in this dog that will surely make sure a good pet for you and the whole family. 

FOUR: German Shepherd 

Known for their herding capacity, German Shepherds are also characterized by the mix of their brains and brawn. As strong as this dog breed is, it is also observed to be among those with distinct intellectual capacities that make them an exceptional companion not only for men and adults but also for young kids. 

The protective instinct is one of the reasons why this dog breed has gained popularity not only among households but also in the police services. With its height that ranges from 24 to 26 inches and weight that goes between 50 to 70 pounds, this big-built dog is undoubtedly one of the go-to breeds for those who are looking to fund dogs that can help them ward off bears from their homes or when they are outside exploring nature. 

Compared to the other breeds mentioned earlier, though, a German Shepherd’s life expectancy only ranges from between 7 to 10 years. Hence, if you want to have a continuous lineage of German Shepherds to become a part of the family, you might consider breeding with other German Shepherds to ensure that the protection you receive from this companion is continuous and the whole family is protected. 

The best way to bond with German Shepherds is through outdoor physical exercises. Whether running or walking, these bonding moments will leave an imprint in your dog’s memory that strengthens his connection with you and improves the way he understands how to protect you. If you have a newborn and your German Shepherd becomes the family member first, introduce your young one to your dog within a controlled environment. When doing this, make sure to pet your dog first- make him feel that the baby is not replacing him- but that the baby is a part of you or an extension of you, which will make it easier for him to realize that your baby is part of his responsibilities now. 

An essential trivia about the German Shepherd that you might want to know, especially when you go out looking for the best dog to keep bears away, is that many show dog enthusiasts have enhanced how German Shepherds are bred. As a result, some German Shepherds have sloped backs. This has caused many health issues among dogs of this breed, affecting their endurance. 

FIVE: Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

Compared to every breed in this list, the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is the smallest built. It is also the smallest among all the other varieties in its breed as an AKC retriever. 

It is small should not be the measuring factor that determines this dog’s capacity to protect you and your family from bears. With solid and agile characteristics, the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is intelligent and can find many strategies to ensure no bear attacks you or enters your property. 

For many years, owners of this dog breed have found it helpful in hunting, camping, and hiking. They also have webbed feet, making it easier for them to swim in the water. This is why they are also considered one of the top choices for rescue dogs because of the versatility of their built. 

The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever grows 18 to 19 inches tall and weighs between 30 to 50 pounds. The weight and height of this dog make it a perfect partner outdoor, which gives you the confidence to go out and roam around without the fear of being attacked by a bear. 

SIX: Standard Rescue Mutt 

Rescue dogs are known for their strength and genuine capacity to be trained. With intelligence matched up with the power and skills of rescue dogs, you will indeed have one dog that is best to protect you from the attack of bears. Among the best rescue dogs include the following breeds: 

Labrador Retriever 

Besides being the most loved dog because of its charm and natural appeal to every age, this rescue mutt is easy to train and love. Because of over breeding, some Labradors have lost their vast capacity to become rescue companions. Nonetheless, with the right choice of puppies and extensive effort of training your dog while giving them the love, attention, and care that they need to thrive, you will undoubtedly be able to get the best of a Labrador retriever. 


These cute dogs that are both sweet and naughty were primarily trained to become hunting companions. 

Known for their floppy ears, the natural hunting instinct of beagles make them great rescue dogs that are effective, especially in warding off bears from attacking you or even getting near your properties. 

They bark loudly, which can immediately startle bears. However, this same loud bark can be a nuisance to neighbors and owners. Nonetheless, with proper training and discipline, Beagles could become the best companion you need for protection. 

Jack Russel Terrier 

Although they are small, the instinct of Jack Russel Terriers to hunt makes them one of the best choices for outgoing individuals as companions. Not only are they notably affectionate they are also protective of their owners. The intensity of this dog’s energy requires that it be regularly brought out for outdoor exercises. 

Key Takeaways 

This extensive list of dogs that you might choose from when looking for the best dog to keep bears away could help you find one that does not only fit the purpose of taking care of a pet but also find the perfect partner that can protect you anywhere you may be. 

Remember, though, that when it comes to tending to dogs, you ought to give attention to their needs and give them a sense of security as well. When they are comfortable where they live and know that they are loved, they will surely give you a hundred folds more of what you give them. A pet dog is more than just a protective companion- it is a life companion. 

To choose from a wide variety of dogs available for tending, why not go to your local shelter and give these dogs another chance at life today. 

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