Acquired: Breeder (professional)
Training: Attended conferences / shows, Books
British Columbia, Canada
Posted September 8, 2012
Bred to chase bears on mountain farms Great Pyrenees, while friendly, tend to be hearty loners. Pyrs however do make good family pets, they’re highly protective (always on guard for lurking bears) and patient with children.
When it comes to activity however Pyrs are somewhat limited. They’re favourite activity is ‘checking the perimeter,’ seriously, these dogs are very security conscious. Even if they are left indoors at night they will get up periodically and go room to room to make sure things are ok.
Yes it’s an endearing quality and not done in an overbearing or intrusive way. Be aware though, this is a large, strong willed breed. Some males may grow to three feet in height and over 150 lbs, and you will have to very strongly establish early on that you are the Alpha of your pack. You will not be doing you or your dog any favors if you are not firm with your puppy when he misbehaves, even if he is an adorable little white fur ball, it won’t be cute when he’s a 150 lbs bear hunter.
That said some full grown Pyrs will go up on their hind legs and put their fore legs on your shoulders. This is actually an act of affection, not one of dominance, but it can be a little disconcerting if you’re not familiar with the breed.
Despite the fact they are happy with a couple of leisurely walks a day and can doze for up to 16 hours a day, they do not make for good apartment pets. Pyrs just need elbow room. If you have one in your house, be prepared for a lot of shedding (even in northern climes), the trade off is it is highly unlikely you will ever be robbed with your trusty Pyr on guard, did I mention they take security very seriously.