What Is The Best Home Defense Weapon That Isn’t A Gun?

Open-ended questions like these are often answered using personal experience or second-hand chatter. What is often ignored are the actual studies and verified results coming from these studies. For instance in the United States did you know that while Bear Spray (somewhat more elevated approach to pepper spray) works very well on animal encounters while similar products are less likely to have an immediate stopping effect on humans? (Smith, et al. 2006) (Vesaluoma, et al. 2000) Facts matter when it comes to self-defense of any type.

What I hope to give you with this article is a compilation of data that shows enough for you to make appropriate decisions regarding your defense of self and family. The best defense is avoidance of potential harm through better life decisions and practices.

An indisputable reality is that those who seek war will find it, and those who seek peace will also find it. Lastly, training is inherently necessary with any form of defense and or tool used in said defense. Without training, any tool used in defense is as useful as a brick sitting on the ground. With the preaching out of the way, its time to look at what is the best non-firearm home defense weapon!


Well, I don’t know about you but I kind of layer my defenses. Number one is a pair of dogs – one little one to let me know somebody’s creeping and a great big motherfucker to keep the intruder busy for just a second. Then there’s a cocked and locked 45 ACP on my nightstand with a pair of extra magazines. On the floor right next to my bed is a loaded AR with another spare mag on the nightstand. Then, just in case the bad guy made it through a 130 pound dog, an ankle biter, 54 rounds of 5.56, 22 rounds of 45 ACP and I can’t make it to the next room for another 8 mags of 5.56, there’s a K-Bar stuck between my mattress and box springs.
It’s true, I can be ill-tempered when woken unexpectedly.

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45 Responses to What Is The Best Home Defense Weapon That Isn’t A Gun?

  1. Paulo says:

    The problem with such preps are visiting grandchildren. Plus, I live in Canada, and if you shoot a prowler you are in big trouble. What I use is a small .410 with #6. When my motion lights come on, (the other big deterrent) it is just usually racoons headed up a tree to lose the lights. The .410 works great for that, and down they come. If a prowler comes through the woods, the lights, my dog…will both wake me up. The .410 will move them along right smartly. The only intruders we really worry about are bears and elk. The .410 works every time, after the dog or lights wake me. !!

    If I could get away with the handgun prep I would use it on walks in the bush, but keep the small shotgun as above. The shells are on the way to the door and takes just a second. They will run…they always do. As for two legged intruders, we don’t even lock our doors around here. My shop is wide open 24/7.

    • Wirecutter says:

      Suitable precautions with my firearms are taken when the grandkids are here.
      Both of us as well as the dogs are used to them wandering around the house at night – going to the bathroom, getting a drink of water, etc. The dogs don’t even signal when that happens.

  2. bogsidebunny says:

    Mr. Pelosi just holds Nancy between him and the home invader.

  3. James says:

    I’ve always found that a flame thrower is a suitable alternative, if you don’t have a gun. Now, why you would have a flame thrower and not a gun, or a grenade launcher, is beyond me.

  4. Big Al says:

    When I run ought of ammo I will go to the tomahawk.

  5. Paul Weiss says:

    Lucille, if you must be without a gun…but I can think of no reason to be without a gun (or 6).

    2nd best to Lucille…a can of wasp spray with the 20-foot range. 3rd best, any spray can and a working lighter.

  6. Cederq says:

    Well then I won’t be banging on your bedroom window at 4am….

  7. Critter says:

    So, you’re not up to a late night beer run, then?

  8. John Deaux says:

    I’m with you on your situation but if they are going firearm free then that plan gets shit canned.
    The dogs along with a good set of locks, a few contacts on the most likely windows and doors along with a motion sensor and a loud alarm are a good start. You could tie it into a light in your bedroom so it turns on when a sensor is triggered, that would give you a early heads up. Bear spray makes a big mess inside a room but a hell of a thing to hit someone with, get the cone spray gell kind, that will light that mothefucker up for a long time. A baseball bat or half a pool stick for last case last damn option.
    Or just get over the bullshit and get a couple guns and learn how to use them.

  9. SAM says:

    Now if this said what is the best home defense weapon when you can not have a gun.
    I’d say a Gun.

  10. ed357 says:

    Your mind…..

    I’ll use anything at my disposal to defend my family…..

    No quarter given……because I don’t believe you’ll get any quarter from your home invaders.

  11. Roger says:

    Don’t forget nudity. The last deputy that wouldn’t quit pounding on my door in the middle of the night got met by a 300 lb bearded grandpa with an AR and an attitude. Took him half a minute to notice the AR. “Sir, could you put some clothes on please?” Nope, you wanted to see me right fucking now, so here I am.

  12. Elmo says:

    Sorry to hear the Model 65 has gone into semi-retirement.

    • Wirecutter says:

      It still gets a workout, but it’s mainly a cool weather gun for when I need a little extra oomph to punch through jackets and coats. There’s also 2 speedloaders on the nightstand in case the revolver goes to bed with me.

      • Elmo says:

        Right on.
        Took me a second to figure out the ‘cool weather-jacket and coat’ part, but I finally got it.

  13. carl says:

    just going by FBI data, the next best thing to a gun is knives, followed by blunt objects. i’d keep some wicked sharp knives and baseball bats laying around in strategic places.

  14. Obama says:

    I just have the wife lift her nightgown. That usually scares the hell out of everyone (especially the kids). If they keep comin and I can’t reach the GP100 in time, I’ll grab my spear

  15. arc says:

    I would opt for deterrence. Motion lights, dogs, lots of thorn bushes, ballistics windows, 4″ door screws, a secured lock, and a door bar. Maybe even a recording of several pissed off men that can be played while you do your own yelling.

    As far as non-gun weapons… Batchete: http://cdn.instructables.com/F9O/SKQV/I2I49MHH/F9OSKQVI2I49MHH.RECT2100.jpg It may cause legal issues though.

    • PoppaGary says:

      arc, can you clarify what you mean by “ballistics windows”?

      • John Deaux says:

        I would imagine he is referring to storm, hurricane, proof types. Hard to break unless you hit them pretty hars which would make plenty noise.

  16. Mike says:

    Whatever is chosen, don’t tell anyone outside of the immediate household, and swear them to secrecy.

  17. All this plus a shovel.

    And I suggest predigging the hole.

  18. Jonathan says:

    From statistics I’ve read, the first thing to do is choose who you have as friends and who you do business with, since about 80% of home invasions are by people know to the residents who have a pre-existing beef.
    Secondly, get and use locks on your doors and windows – over 70% of burglaries take place at homes with unlocked doors or windows.
    if you make those two choices, you majorly reduced the likelihood of a problem to start with – once they are taken care of, then start discussing dogs, weapons, etc.
    P.S. While crime can happen anywhere, it is much, much, more likely in certain areas, so choosing the right place to live can make a big difference as well.

    • Wirecutter says:

      I had a cop in Modesto tell me once that 95% of the home invasions they investigated were drug related.

      • Jonathan says:

        Exactly. I’ve heard that many are related to drugs or other criminal activity, and that most of the rest are family/ domestic disputes, many of which probably involved alcohol and/or drugs at some past time.

  19. Andrew says:

    For those places that have issues with an actual fighting knife or sword, a roofing hammer/hatchet works real well, since it’s basically a tomahawk but can be bought at the hardware store and doesn’t look ‘tactical.’

    For a blade weapon, a heavy bladed Bowie or KaBar with a nice sharp point beats just about anything short of a Roman Gladius.

    Basically, layered defense and options is the way to go.

  20. Hillbilly says:

    I really think the dog thing is the way to go, I like the Roman Gladius too. Cold steel yup. My dogs alert us long before anyone gets up the driveway, so it’s almost always the 870 with 00 buck. My son gave Mom and I a Rottweiler pup for Christmas last year, 9 months old and he’s 100lbs and running bears off from Moms Bee hives. Training and more training makes fer a smart dog.

  21. sa says:

    my trusty tomahawk has already proven itself a few years back, let’s just say “lefty” won’t be breaking into my house again

  22. Martin says:

    Never tell all your secrets

  23. B says:

    2 lb dry powder fire extinguisher. Legal everywhere,

    Ain’t no one gonna be able to continue with a snoot full of that powder. Then use the empty to bash his brains out.

    Short range, and only one shot, but still….


  24. C.R. says:

    Years back I had a couple of idiot friends pay a visit in the middle of the night. They didnt call ahead,Just showed up I was snoozing , and I heard the back door open up , I rolled out of the rack , grabbed the 12 gauge,and racked a round into the chamber. It was a quiet night so they heard that unmistakable sound and they bailed out yelling JESUS Dont SHOOT !! well , we had a chat about why its a good idea to call ahead .

  25. Blondi Utronki says:

    When I moved into my house, my insurance agent asked me if I had an alarm system. I said “yes, 4 dogs and retirees for neighbors.”

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