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  • Michael J. Lembo, CPA

Rifles Vs. Shotguns

Shotguns and rifles were developed for different uses and excelled in other tasks. The rifle is primarily used for precise target shooting, plinking at longer ranges, and hunting giant games. At the same time, shotguns are used primarily for bird hunting and shooting aerial targets.

We may address the question of which of these two firearms might be better for home defense. Both rifles and shotguns can be very effective as home-defense weapons. With proper ammunition and shot placement from an ammunition store, both will likely do the same job as any typical home-defense weapon.

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A rifle is usually heavier than a shotgun.

A shotgun is less heavy than a rifle.

Number of fires

A rifle can only fire one lead.

Can fire small leads in dozens.

Type of bore

Have spiral bore

Have smooth bore

Target Distance

A rifle can hit a target 75 to 100 yards away.

Shotguns can hit targets up to 50 yards away.


Rifles are primarily used in firing at stationary targets.

Shotguns are very useful for shooting at moving prey in the air.

Rifles and shotguns may look similar but differ in structure, features, and usage. Rifles have more power than shotguns, whereas shotguns are much more effective at a close distance than rifles. The shotguns are much easier to aim at and perfect for self-defense. Regarding long distances, rifles are better to seek than shotguns. When you use shotguns for longer shots, they cannot deliver much load beyond 50 yards. As mentioned earlier, shotguns fire dozens of pallets, which is less helpful in targeting a distant object. Rifles, however, can deliver a perfect shot at a longer distance.

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