What criminals are typically looking for is an easy score (burglary) or hit (robbery), and what a decoy does is give the impression that things might go wrong and they might get caught, hurt, or lose their life in the process of this crime.That’s when they look elsewhere for an easier target.
Security experts over the years and a CIA operative who recently shared a tip on a report I came across have said a lot about the effectiveness of decoys to reduce the chances of a criminal selecting you or your home as a target. Let’s start with the tip shared by that CIA operative:
Use a Large Dog Bowl as a Decoy to Scare Off Burglars
His advice: Place a large dog bowl outside your back door to scare off potential burglars that are casing your neighborhood that day for an easy score. Many times he says they’re just going to assume you have a large dog, and that’s enough to make them go further down the block and look at other possible houses.While having a real security dog is one of the best things to do when it comes to deterring burglars, when it’s not an option for someone, simply giving the appearance of owning a security dog can be just as effective.
Why does this work? Usually one or two people in every neighborhood, sometimes more, own a security dog. A crook (who is casing your house) is taking a serious risk giving thought to the idea, what if you don’t actually have a dog? Better safe than sorry, for a crook. Most will skip your house and move on.
But what about the front door? Should you only put a dog bowl by the back door? Here’s a few more tips to address that.
Decoys to Deter Criminals from Home Invasion
Some burglars (especially those amped up on drugs and or desperate for cash and or mentally ill) might not be so careful to fully case a home. They might never look at your back door and so just decide to make their way through the front door or a side window they find open or unlocked. So, my recommendation now is to amp it up a bit:Have several “canine decoys” around your property.
– By your front door: A large bag of dog food, a large old leash (it should look worn) and even a muzzle. What does a muzzle say? It says to a would be burglar that your dog is dangerous.
– On the back of your vehicles, place stickers that say “Rottweiler of the Month Club” or something to that effect. On the other car: “My best friend is a Rottweiler” (Rottweiler, Doberman, Pit Bull, etc. Your choice.)
Now what if your cars are kept in the garage or simply no one is home that day?
On windows around your home, put up stickers about “Rottweiler Security.”
Finally: Just outside any possible side windows a burglar may come through, lay out a large rubber dog bone on each side of the house (that also looks used, chewed on — talk to a local canine breeder, they’ll probably sell you a few they might have laying around) and some chewed on, old tennis balls. This is the kind of thing that tells a burglar you’ve got a serious canine in the house.
Unless someone knows you personally, and that you don’t actually have a security dog, most would-be burglars and home invaders are going to take notice, and you are going to avoid being a victim of what could have been a very serious crime that day.
Use Security Alarm Signs and Window Stickers to Deter Burglars
While having a real alarm system installed is the best choice (and can lower your home owners insurance rate and possibly renters insurance if you rent), just having a few home alarm stickers and signs around your property can do the trick as well. They are proven deterrents — though not always. Some criminals are aware that your home alarm may go off but your neighbors might just ignore it, and the police — if they arrive — might not get there for quite some time.(It may all come down to the “responsiveness” of local police as well as the reliability of the alarm company, as to how fast police respond to a particular alarm system.)
A professional burglar may know a way to disarm certain security systems. In the end, a security alarm sign may scare off local teenagers or drug addicts, but not a pro. Not always.
So, back to those canine decoys. The canine decoys may be a lot more likely to scare off the pro — and the alarm signs can scare off most everyone else that might see your home as a possible score.
Place Decoys On Your Vehicles
This is something that could reduce your chances of a robbery when out in town.Or, if simply parked in front of your home, a would be burglar can come to the conclusion approaching from the road that you may be armed. If you’re going to use these sticker on your vehicles, stop parking them in the garage — park them in front of your home where they are visible.
A Few Ideas for Decoys
Stickers for supporting a law enforcement training organization — and next to that, the popular “Dare to Keep Kids Off Drugs” could make you look like law enforcement (but you need both stickers, not just a “Dare” sticker).
You know that “Rottweiler Security” sign on your front or side windows of your home? You can have a sticker right next to it that says:
“If my Rottweiler doesn’t get you, my Smith and Wesson will” (with an image of a pistol).
“Shoot first … ask questions later.”
Here’s a place to print custom stickers:
Say whatever you want to say. Just make it sound real and that you mean business.
Here Are a Few Resources You Can Use As Decoys
NRA Decals / Stickers – Use on the back of your vehicles, on small windows next to each porch, etc.
Black Canine Rubber Bone Chew Toys – If you can’t find a local dog breeder willing to sell a few old, chewed up dog toys, you can buy this one, beat it up with a hammer so it looks a bit “chewed on” at casual glance, and place 2 or 3 outside your side windows, front door, and / or side gates.
Rottweiler Security Signs – Use on a window closest to every door to your home. Consider placing on each side window as well.
Beware of Dogs – “Beware of Dogs … You Have Been Warned … Not Responsible for Injury Or Death.”
* Disclaimer: This site gets people from all walks of life and backgrounds. As a Christian writer I believe in living by faith in the Living God, and I know that a number of my readers are on that same page. When it comes to taking steps for home security, let God lead you in what steps to take or not take. He can protect us in the midst of the biggest dangers that we can face in life. Maybe that John 3:16 bumper sticker is a much better label for the back of your car than a “NRA” decal, if you really want to make a statement that matters.
Caution About Gun Ownership Decoys
Here’s something to keep in mind. Your various decoys on your cars and property could make law enforcement a bit on edge should you ever be pulled over or they show up at your property on a call for any reason. Just keep your cool, don’t make any sudden movements around the police, and chuckle and calmly say “all my stickers are just to scare away burglars.”You might make a nervous cop a bit more at ease in that moment, and avoid getting a gun pulled on you, or worse.
Place Decoys in Your Home
In plain sight of windows, place decoys in your home that are likely to be seen if an intruder is looking through windows, trying to determine if anyone is home.- If you’re going to be gone, set up your vacuum in the middle of an entry way, with chord plugged into the wall. Lay out some cleaning supplies, a mop bucket, etc. It can look as though someone is in the home actively cleaning. (Turn up the radio in a back room and leave the television on in the front room.)
– Purchase a police badge (toy replica) that you can leave on a kitchen counter — or any area in plain sight of main windows — and put a clipboard, pen and a couple ammunition shells next to it.
– If you’re a woman, and you live alone — buy the largest men’s work boots you can find at the local thrift store, and some men’s tennis shoes roughly the same size, and put these on your door step.
I’m not advising people to take every step listed here. But you might be able to combine a couple of these steps in different ways to make your home look occupied on a day you are typically not at home, or — with the police badge and ammunition shells on your kitchen counter — you can scare of a night time intruder, if he sees these decoys where you’ve placed them in plain sight.
Security Measures in Addition to Decoys
– Motion detector flood lights are a deterrent known to scare away burglars. A few top rated brands are solar operated (and cheap), meaning you don’t have to be an electrician to install.- Keep vegetation trimmed back away from your home, and also — if you have any walls of brush around your home — trim the underside — so that the bottom of the brush can be seen from the street.
– As a noise deterrent, you can create an area of hard packed dirt stretching a few feet from the edges of your home. On top, lay a thick layer of gravel. Gravel makes a “crunch” sound when walked on, and this can deter certain crooks, in the same way a motion detector can (though a smart crook may figure out that if he lays a blanket over the gravel, or a towel, etc, that the noise is muffled).
– Experts advise not to simply turn on your porch lights when you plan to be away. A day time porch light that is never turned off can be a signal to a crook that you are away on vacation. Better, buy inexpensive dusk to dawn porch lights for the front of your home, and for the rear. You simply screw these into existing light sockets. When morning comes, the light turns off automatically. At dusk, as the day ends, the light comes back on.
Don’t Fall Prey To Clever Scams to Get Past Your Decoys
Most people are probably ok opening the door to a postman, UPS driver, and those Mormons that make their way around the neighborhood, week after week. An additional security step can be to install a chain on your door (or similar top rated device), that allows you to only open the door a few inches, and gives you the opportunity to stand behind the door, helping you avoid becoming a victim in a home invasion.Why install a security guard or chain device on your front door? Here are a few reasons …
If anyone does show up at your door — or calls ahead to your phone and lets you know you have a “delivery” (see link above about clever lies and scams crooks use) — open your door and begin with, “Sorry, I have to keep my dog from getting past the door, I can’t open it, he’s dangerous.” (It might not be the complete truth, but if it keeps your wife or daughter from harm one day, I think it’s a safe white-lie to go with.)
Real (and Fake) Security Surveillance Cameras
A fake security camera placed at a high angle, out of reach, can also be a deterrent (though a real security camera, that records or photographs anyone that steps onto your porch, or provides surveillance to areas outside your home that might be hidden from view, might be an even better investment for some home owners that feel they could be targeted for a home invasion).
Tens of millions of Americans live in or within a few miles of major cities with large populations of people who are not prepped with food and water, nor are they mentally prepared for a catastrophic disaster to strike.
The closer you live to any of these areas — serious trouble spots — the more danger you face to property and life following any major event that could be too much shock for a lot of people to handle. Even if you live a few miles away in a distant suburb, those downtown streets might lead straight to your neighborhood, and some bad cats could be heading your way shortly.
My goal isn’t to try to scare anyone — but to really get people to think about the consequences of massive social unrest and what it can mean for folks in the suburbs. Maybe it’s time to seriously give thought to moving further away, or to a more strategic area less likely to be overrun in the first few days or weeks of a major disaster…
by Mark Lawrence