Skip to Content

Are Greyhounds Protective?

Are Greyhounds Protective?

Have you ever wanted to get a Greyhound, but been worried about whether this dog may prove difficult to handle, and whether you will be able to deal with it? Greyhounds are gorgeous animals, but it is important to fully understand the temperament and personality of the dog that you are taking on. Of course, every Greyhound is different, but there are some overall trends associated with this breed that will help you to understand how it is likely to behave and whether one would fit well into your home or not.

So, are Greyhounds protective? On the whole, these dogs aren’t known for being protective, and they are not usually chosen as guard dogs or watchdogs. Like all dogs, they will try to drive away something that they perceive as a threat, but most are fairly placid and avoid conflict.

In this article, we’re going to explore whether Greyhounds are ever protective, either of places or of people. We’ll look at the common trends associated with Greyhound behavior and examine whether you could use a Greyhound as a watchdog to protect your home. Finally, we’ll examine the loyalty that these dogs show and the bonds they build with their owners. This will help you decide whether a Greyhound would make a good addition to your family, or whether another breed would be more suitable for you. By the end of the article, you’ll have a great understanding of Greyhound’s behavior!

Are Greyhounds Protective?

On the whole, Greyhounds are not considered protective dogs, and most owners find that their dogs will approach strangers for affection and food, rather than to check whether they are a potential threat. Greyhounds do not tend to look at others with suspicion, and overall, they show minimal aggressive or protective tendencies.

This may be because of the breeding that created Greyhounds; they were bred to increase their speed, rather than for brute strength or dominance. Their bodies are honed for running, and characteristics such as aggression and protectiveness were not bred into them. Overall, therefore, most of these dogs do not show protectiveness.

You are unlikely to find your Greyhound guarding its food bowl, barking at the mail carrier, growling at other dogs, or pacing around your yard to mark its territory. Your Greyhound is much more likely to be interested in other things, such as food, naps, and walks, than chasing off other dogs or defending things its possessions.

This can be beneficial, because many owners do not want dogs that are protective or possessive, and these traits can cause a whole host of behavioral problems. However, be aware that your Greyhound is not likely to try and chase away intruders that enter your home, or to bark in an attempt to alert you to strangers. You will have to depend on other methods for keeping your home safe.

Of course, this is not true of every Greyhound ever. Some are more protective of their homes and the things they care about, especially if they have had traumatic pasts. It is perfectly possible for a Greyhound to become protective over something. Almost all dogs have a strong sense of territory and resources, and will protect them if necessary. Overall, however, Greyhounds are laid back and prefer to avoid confrontation.

Are Greyhounds Protective Of Their Owners? 

This depends heavily on the bond between the owner and the dog, but on the whole, most Greyhounds are not known for being particularly protective of their owners.

This does not mean that your dog would ignore you being in danger, but you should be aware that Greyhounds tend not to see threats in the same way that other dogs do, and may ignore them or opt for non-confrontational behavior where possible.

These dogs do not tend to have as much of an issue with strangers approaching, people hugging, or their owners playing with other dogs, because they are not defensive creatures.

However, there are many reports of Greyhounds defending their owners in genuinely dangerous situations, and because they are large dogs, they are perfectly capable of doing so when they choose to. If your Greyhound thinks something is threatening you, it is reasonably likely to step in. You are a member of its pack and it will look after you.

Many people find the Greyhound’s more relaxed approach to others appealing, while some prefer to have a dog that they know will protect them when it’s necessary. You will have to decide for yourself which is the more important trait for you.

It’s also worth noting that while Greyhounds are not generally protective of their owners, many people don’t know this. If you frequently walk at night or in places where you feel unsafe alone, a Greyhound may prove a great deterrent even if it is not protective. As a large, muscular dog, it will put people off bothering you by its mere presence.

Sometimes, you may find that your Greyhound puts its body between you and another person or dog. This is often a quiet sign of your dog protecting you, even if it does not growl, bark, or display any other threatening behavior.

Are Greyhounds Good Watch Dogs Or Guard Dogs?

Greyhounds are not known for being great watchdogs or guard dogs, and if you need a canine that will defend your property while you are away, they are not a particularly suitable choice. They tend not to view people who come to the house as a threat, and will generally try to befriend them, rather than treating them with suspicion.

If you ever have visitors to your home, you will probably find that your Greyhound displays interest in them as potential friends and then returns to its favorite nap spot soon after. Most Greyhounds are laid back about strangers being in or around the home, and some may not even bark a warning when someone unknown approaches.

Again, this is likely due to the Greyhound’s breeding. These dogs were bred to enhance their ability to run, and other characteristics – such as protectiveness, barking, and being acutely aware of strangers – were not chosen during this breed’s creation.

Your Greyhound is therefore unlikely to make a good guard dog, and if this is important to you, it would be best to choose another breed.

There are many that make superb guard dogs, and this simply isn’t a Greyhound’s specialty. With most Greyhounds, the most that you can expect is a few barks to alert you to someone’s arrival. Extended barking or defensive behavior is very unlikely.

Are Greyhounds Loyal?

Yes, Greyhounds are extremely loyal dogs. They are known for being highly sensitive, and that means that many people form strong bonds with their Greyhounds, and the loyalty certainly runs deep in such situations.

Just because your Greyhound doesn’t have a protective nature does not mean that it doesn’t love you and care about you. It may not see the surrounding world as a threat or respond to potential threats with protectiveness and aggression, but it certainly will be loyal to you as long as you treat it well.

Sadly, many Greyhounds are used in racing, which does not give them much opportunity to form emotional bonds with the people that handle them. However, rescued Greyhounds that are fostered or adopted will generally respond with an immensely strong bond and absolute, immovable loyalty.

Any Greyhound owner knows how intensely their dog loves and cares for them, even if this is not shown in the protectiveness that other dogs might display. Your Greyhound will love spending time with you, napping on the couch by you, walking with you, and playing with you.

It will be unhappy when separated from you, and may even get anxious if you are away from home for long. Most Greyhounds are renowned for their sensitivity and loyalty, so never doubt your dog’s affection for you, even if it does not seem protective when a situation might normally call for it.


So, the answer to “are Greyhounds protective?” is that they can be quietly protective, but as a whole, this breed is not known for being protective of either their homes or their owners.

They do not make great watch dogs, and may not even bark when someone approaches the home. However, they are fiercely loyal dogs that form strong emotional bonds with their owners, and their love for their family runs deep.