Em Kellner wrote:Wow! Yes, I suppose LGDs can go both ways, good point! I have definitely thought about the rooster issue, and since we will be raising poultry for both eggs and meat I have no qualms with quickly culling aggressive roos. We have a big enough property that I'm hoping the children and any roosters will stay out of each other's way for the most part, but I imagine all we can do without knowing the birds' temperaments is to keep a close watch in the beginning and teach the little ones to give the animals a wide berth. Do you think an LGD who is bonded to both flock and family would ever come between an attacking roo and a child? That would be fascinating to know.
Em Kellner wrote:Beautiful dogs! Can I ask about the maintenance your Great Pyr requires with his coat? A dog in our winters would need a longer coat, but I'm curious how much time I'm looking at to maintain it.
John Weiland wrote:We don't trim either of these guys but they have free access to the basement on hot days in mid summer.....and they use either that or holes that they dig (and the nearby river) for staying cool. Do a good job....almost too good....of keeping the chickens and geese safe. The lighter one has taken out chickies in his younger days, but he may have outgrown that for this year. He likes the house....and the kitchen....whereas the other loves the outdoors rain or shine, winter or summer. But the real protection here comes from the "guard pigs"....those three keep an eye on everything. Especially the feed bin....
John Weiland wrote:@Elle: "I'd heard Anatolians were harder to train than pyrs because they were more instinct driven. Have you found yours difficult?"
Honestly, my wife deals with 95% of the training and she too mostly perused the internet and read some books. She leans towards the "clicker training" method and has taken this approach mostly. Success is a mixed bag. They are good about guarding the property and leaving alone what should be left alone. She has not been so successful at "recall" when they start after something--The property is fenced, but occasional walks are taken where a vehicle or deer or what-have-you is seen in the distance and if they get a bee in their bonnet about it they are off and almost impossible to call back until "they" are satisfied. [It's a worry because "shoot, shove, and silence" is the "3S code" around here, but fair enough -- they should be under control.] But when they hear coyotes they bark and howl and just stay put. As they get older, they seem more resigned to do their job and not get into trouble. They've been great when the occasional visitor/delivery man arrives and we don't worry about any aggression.
And Yes, it's .....um....."funny"(?) to have him look *down* at your plate on the table. He's pretty good about not taking things from there....but not 100% angel.
The whiter one when younger, "frolicking" with his porcine pal:
Em Kellner wrote:Love the pictures! Can I get thoughts on LGDs who weren't necessarily born around livestock, or whose parentage is unknown, such as LGD breeds from a rescue? Do you think that breed instincts and training could prevail there or is it a pretty big gamble?