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I got to find out! No, it wasn’t a real intruder. But my husband spooked Peggy pretty badly yesterday.

He was just being silly. He crept out into the backyard while she was playing and did a funny walk towards her, thinking she’d gleefully pounce. But the sun was super low and bright and she had no idea it was him. Eek!

She did a double take, let out a couple of shocked woofs, and then made a biiiiiiiiiig circle around the yard, keeping her eyes on him while carefully avoiding him.....until she was standing behind me.

Where did my guard dog go? Lol. Before being spayed, Peggy would have stiffened or run straight at him, barkbarkbarking.

What would your poodle do?
 

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Barked hysterically while backing away and keeping her distance, on past experience! Never a real intruder, but if it is someone she doesn't recognise and I don't give the all clear they are likely to get a volley of warning barks.
 
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Mine would bark repeatedly and probably circle around the intruder at a safe distance. I'm not sure what would happen if someone physically threatened me. They are both still puppies mentally, so they don't yet have the self assurance and confidence of a grown dog. Pogo and Snarky almost certainly would have intervened, especially if both were present to back each other up.
 

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Mia, Christmas in June 2010
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Not a human intruder, but... a couple of winters ago, a black snake crawled onto our screened in porch in January (I left the external door open, not anticipating that it was warm enough for a black snake to be on the move). Mia was stuck on the porch with it, until I heard her scratching the screen in the far corner, near her bed. She was too scared of the snake to circle around the table on the far side from the snake and come to the door, which is what I did to get her inside. Once I checked her over and saw that she was uninjured (quaking with fear but not pain), I went back to the porch to sweep the snake out the door. My big, brave, intrepid poodle cowered behind me in the doorway, peeking out from behind my legs.
 

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If the person was acting very aggressive physically and verbally Babykins and Teddy would bark. Babykins would bark from a few feet away and Teddy would run to his safe spot on the family room couch and support her with his loud bark. Neither would attack or get close.

If the criminal were acting confident, quiet and business like (like you sometimes see people running up to front doors and stealing boxes) … Babykins would run up to greet them looking for petting like the trained therapy dog that she is. Teddy would probable be sitting quietly on his safe spot on the couch waiting and watching to see if he should bark or join Babykins in greeting.

My dogs don’t even bark when someone rings the door bell, I can’t depend on them to be guard dog. That’s okay, they have other jobs like couch snugglers.
 

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Phoebe was surprised by a worker in the yard. I knew he was there but she didn’t. She jumped back in surprise and froze but was fine with him after a second, I assume because he said something to me and I answered.
Diego (chow mix) on the other hand… he’s very mellow in his old age, but as a young dog he would have given a stranger the what-for. He also has always been really weird about silhouettes changing. For example, if I wear a floppy hat, he’s suspicious until I talk or he gets a sniff in.
 

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Normie says 'don't come on our porch or in our house.' High-pitched barking ensues.

I have to introduce him to the people who come in. But unless it's family he gives them the Evil Eye.
 

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Elroy: Standard Poodle
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Elroy would Bark, Bark, Bark at him while rushing towards him. When he got there, he would give him hugs and kisses if he (the intruder) didn't object. If he did object (like act scared or run away), I don't really know what he'd do. Probably a few more Bark, Bark, Barks as he watches him go away.
 

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Years ago when he was still far newer to his new home with me, Oliver and I were out walking in the neighborhood. I did not note the man running up behind us in an aggressive manner, but Oliver apparently did. The man was (I think) already angry, but he stopped to yell at me my dog had nipped his ankles or legs.

I didn't see anything happen and the man had approached from behind in a narrow area extremely aggressively, so if Ol nipped him, I was not terribly sorry. Maybe the man had bad plans. Oliver adores men, so to do that said a lot. It all happened very rapidly. I quickly began watching all around us much better.
 

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Asta would bark bark bark and assume a posture that means trouble. He does however love the UPS man who brings his Chewy boxes and will give him a cookie. But strangers beware - this is my attack poodle tho he really wouldn't do anything but bark.
 

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Topper might be broken - doesn't always bark when he hears the doorbell, a knock on the door or the mail carrier/delivery person on our porch. Occasionally he will bark fairly quietly when the doorbell rings, and run to me to make sure I heard it. We haven't encountered an intruder or hostile person while out on walks, but when he sees something he can't figure out (even if it's my husband hiking several paces behind me), he stops to get a better look/sniff. When we were at our back-woods place, some people came down the driveway to talk to us and Topper ran up to say hello - no bark, no growl. Too well socialized to people to be great watchdog!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Peggy’s typical response to visitors (even strangers at the door) is nothing like how she responded to this “intruder.”

This was definitely a novel experience. She thought something bad was going down. Lol.
 

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Annie is a chicken....she generally avoids confrontation.

I would say she would run away, or get behind me... But one day she woke up from a sound sleep when my mother opened my bedroom door. Annie leapt to her feet, stood on my bed in front of me, and growled low and serious. Then realized who it was and turned to a mess of apologetic poodle.

i have also had her get between me and scary things on walks though she does sometimes appreciate when I put myself between her and the scary thing.

The most seriously protective dog I ever had was our St. Bernard. She loved EVERYONE and we used to joke she would knock over an intruder and lick their face. Well... twice when I was home alone, someone came down the lane, she decided she didn't like them (they weren't expected guests or people I knew,and walked instead of driving) and she got between us, showed teeth, growled, and meant business. She also chased off a bear that came down the lane!
 

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I saw this a while back:


Made me feel sad for the dogs, but was very interesting.
I'm actually not surprised by the response of the little dogs. They were working together. I remember once years ago talking to someone about pet dogs harassing livestock. He said it was very common for a problem pack to include a little dog that would whip the other dogs up.
 

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Lily likes almost anyone. She would bark, but then probably look to get pets. Javelin would bark and then chase the person and probably try to bite. If I allow someone to come in they would both be okay. An intruder would only be regarded as such if they broke into the house. A person who enters with a key is accepted.
 

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Elroy: Standard Poodle
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The 2 dogs at the end are praised for repelling the intruder.(?) Looks to me like they're both very happy (tails upright and happily wagging) and may be actually trying to jump up on him to get/give kisses.
They're probably just smart enough to realize that he's not a real threat and are joining in on the fun!
 
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