Go-To Guns for Home Defense

Go-To Guns for Home Defense

I was just starting to get comfortable in my bed a little before 11:00 pm one night this past spring when I caught the movement of light outside my bedroom window. At the very same moment, my daughter was calling me from her cell phone upstairs in her bedroom to say that she was seeing lights out her window as well and that someone was walking around outside our house. I jumped out of bed, grabbed the Mossberg Plinkster .22 rifle that was leaning in the corner behind the dresser in our room.

I slipped down the hallway just in time to catch someone snooping around on our back deck. They were looking around, as well as looking through the sliding glass door. Without turning the lights on in the house, I eased over to the door without being seen by the prowler on the porch. 

I quietly opened the sliding glass door and eased the barrel of the gun out as the person continued to snoop their way around our back deck.

I shouted, “Can I help you!” as the prowler started to walk back down the steps.

At that point, the person quickly made their way in my direction towards the door.  In a flash, I knew I could be facing a life-altering decision knowing someone was crazy enough to try and get in my house with me standing in the doorway. 

I shouted, “Stop…or I’m going to shoot!” 

At that point I heard a woman’s voice reply, “I need help.” The woman was obviously under the influence and claimed to be looking for her husband.  

I made it clear to the lady that she was looking in the wrong place for her husband, got her some help, and sent her on her way.

Go-To Guns

On that night, the little Plinkster in my hand was enough to deter the woman at my door. Fortunately, she didn’t call my bluff.

But the encounter got me thinking, “I really wish I would have had more than a little .22 in my hands when all that chaos went down.”

In the days following, I quickly researched the guns I wanted to add to my home security collection. Here’s a look at the guns I wish I had when I met a prowler at the door.

Mossberg 500 ATI Tactical

If looks alone could kill, the 500 ATI Tactical would have you covered. This gritty new shotgun from Mossberg is the perfect blend of Mossberg reliability with the functionality and performance of ATI components.

It has all the features the 500 is known for, including ambidextrous safety, dual extractors, positive steel-to-steel lockup, twin action bars, and a smooth operating anti-jam elevator.

Better yet, the features of this model allow you to outfit this gun with a plethora of components to give you the baddest tactical shotgun on the planet. The stock, heat shield, side saddle, and accessory rail options take this tactical 500 to a whole new level.

It’s a 12 gauge chambered in 3” with a 5+1 capacity and an 18.5” barrel. The gun weighs in at 6.75 pounds and sells for $588.

Mossberg 590 Shockwave

The 590 Shockwave was introduced in 2017 and quickly became a favorite for home defense because of its compact design and shooter-friendly performance.

Thanks to its compact size the gun is perfectly suited for a grab-n-go defense firearm when things get ugly, yet can easily be stored in a number of places throughout your home. The gun comes in 12 gauge with a 5+1 shell capacity. It’s chambered to 3 inches and features a heavy-walled, 14.375” barrel.

It weighs in at 5.25 pounds and starts at $469.

Mossberg MC1sc Subcompact Pistol

It’s been a long time coming, but Mossberg finally released their MC1sc subcompact 9mm pistol.

It’s honestly one of the most exciting releases for Mossberg as they dive into the category of concealed carry protection. It’s the perfect tool for when trouble arises in tight quarters and you need to quickly make your move.

The MC1sc was designed for optimal shootability with superior ergonomics. It starts with an optimized grip angle for easier target acquisition and a flat profile for an improved pull. The gun was built for concealment with its slim profile design that won’t snag on the draw.

The MC1sc weighs in at just 22 ounces and starts at $421.


The crazy encounter I had with a prowler at my back door was enough to motivate me to beef up my home defense arsenal. The guns mentioned above are where I’ll start in my efforts to live out my freedom to protect the ones I love the most.

About the Author

Brodie Swisher

Brodie Swisher is a world champion game caller, outdoor writer, and seminar speaker.
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