Hiker1, it appears you assume there will only be one dog, and that it will be left on its own, outdoors.
I have three, and they are primarily indoor dogs. When outdoors, the two large dogs play together. I suppose they'd be vulnerable to poisons, but a baseball bat, not so much.
Somebody harming one of my dogs while they are outdoors would be a huge tipoff that something else might follow.
And nobody approaches silently when multiple dogs are in the house.
But other things people can do, in addition to carrying while at home:
1) Don't set up the yard so that there are bushes, hedges, small trees up against the house, where intruders can hide. For night-time, motion detector lights are also a good idea.
2) Have spring and deadbolts on all exterior doors (and treat the door from the garage as an exterior door); ensure all exterior doors are good quality, and seated in strong, solid door-frames.
3) Have locks on all windows (and have good, tempered glass windows).
4) Use the locks on the doors and windows; they don't do much good otherwise.
5) Use burglar bars as well as locks on glass sliding doors.
6) If you have the money, sliding, locking metal shutters that can be rigged outside the sliding glass doors are a good idea. Swinging or sliding, locking metal shutters for the windows are, too.
7) Closed circuit TV and an intercom for the front door (and around the corners from the door, to look for potential accomplices) are a good way to look out for the BGs who knock at a door, then force it open when you go to see who's there.
And that's just for the exterior of the home. There are a bunch of things you can do inside.
And, of course, carry. But the gun is the last line of defense, not the first.