Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Teaching a Old Pack Leader New Tricks

While we are waiting with great anticipation for the arrival of Seamus I have been doing some research on both the Komondor and Great Pyrenees breeds.
"Please find me a HOME.....All I need is someone one to love me!"

Jake, my big white dog, is a rescue I adopted him 2 years ago on Mother's Day weekend.  He was about 6 months to 8 months old, he is now 3! I drove to southern Illinois, almost to St. Louis to get him, found him on Petfinders! The add said Great Pyrenees / Irish Wolfhound and I think maybe some Standard Poodle.  Jake is really agile loves to do this flying spins in the air when he is excited...but man it is all a guess.  One of these days when even a row boat comes in I will have him tested.  

For anyone interested you can get this done for around $ 60.00 at Fluffy Dog Wellness heres the link~

Jake has double dew claws, very much a Great Pyr. trait, he is all white and has an independent attitude! He's coat is thick with a very soft undercoat with a kind of wiry over coat.  He has a beard and the most beautiful golden eyes, and when he is wet he you see the Wolfhound.  He is also very tall about 31" at his shoulders and a big guy 150lbs. He is really a mess in this photo but shows his coat and crazy face! 

I know from living and training a Great Pyr that it can be a challenge, you need to really understand livestock guarding dogs. While researching the Komondor I was not surprised to find many similarities in both breeds. These guys have been bred to be self-thinkers and require a strong pack leader that understands positive reinforcement and making training fun is the only way they will truly respond.  You can not bully these breeds, they need a strong loving hand.  You need to give them their space to think and make the decision that "ya man I can and will do that".  
Mollie is a mystery from Missouri....I lost two wonderful dogs, an Akita at 11years and a 180lb 6 year old Lab/Shepard mix within 6 months of each other...I like big dogs!  Mollie was a gift from my neighbors, they found her at a feed store, free to a good home around 6 weeks old.  They where told she was Newfoundland / Great Pyr mix....right!  She is short, wide and I have no clue on the tail, she looks like a Lab Pointerish kind of thing.  Mollie loves the water and she really wants to please me, very Labish....Jake could really careless.

I had never had a Great Pyrenees or Pyr mix....what a wonderful interesting surprise...Wolfhounds are really laid back, in their temperament profile I actually read...."if your looking for a guard dog a Wolfhound is most likely not your breed, unless your plan is for the intruder to trip over him"  When reading about the temperament of either the Great Pyr or the Komondor guarding is what they are all about, guarding the flock, guarding the family etc.  Words like independent, instinctively protective, vigilant pop up....but you also read about how affectionate both of these breeds are, how they love other animals, cats, dogs, sheep you name it.  You also read that it is vital that they both be socialized at a young age and that their owners keep this up as both breeds can become intolerant of trespassers and teasing.  

I can tell you that I have had 7 to 8 dogs in my adult life, 1 full blooded Lab, a Golden Retriever / Terrier mix, Lab/Chesapeake mix, an Akita and a Lab/Shepard mix.  Of all these dogs I found Jake to be the most interesting, most people meet him and end up telling me he looks like a man in a dog suit.  He has also been the most trying to train....Labs will do anything to please...the Akita had a lot to say and wanted to test me at most every turn.....Jake wants to think for himself, when we hike he will get 100 yards way from me, not pay one damn bit of attention, or a least look like he's not paying one bit of attention...."Lady relax....I see you, you see me, everything is fine and I'm smelling stuff over here!"  He was driving me I hired a trainer, Gretchen of  Lake County Dog Trainer she is a dream....Force Free trained, all positive reinforcement...I learned so much from her and still do.  

If you want to consider Seamus read about the breeds, be ready for a challenge and be certain you are a strong pack leader, he will never let you down.....I can not wait to meet him integrating him into my pack, getting him started walking on leash, socializing him into the neighborhood and dog park,  I don't even know if he is house trained, but that is the simple part if you use a crate!  I have come to love the independence of the Livestock Guarding Breeds, I love the fact that I need to work for their respect, it is just not handed to me, I know Jake thinks I hung the moon, he just won't tell me!  I am really looking forward to bringing another Great Pyr and now Komondor into my pack.  
Stay turned for more
The Lady.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Seamus is Coming

Well hello again to any of our return readers.... 
              A very big hello to all our new readers.....

We are getting ready to invite a new friend to stay with us on his journey to his forever home...our new guy is Seamus and we are really looking forward to his arrival....
I'm picking him up on Tuesday so we will let all of you know who this guy is as soon as we get to meet him....
We sure like his name...and you have to admit he has a great face!

We would like to introduce ourselves to all the new readers.......

This is Mollie Maie

"Hi everyone....
I sure can't wait to meet and play with Seamus he looks like a fun guy!
I'm a very smart girl and silly Jake and I help the Lady exercise, discipline and love
all the fosters that come to stay on their Journey to find their homes.  
We just love helping them turn into the best dogs they can be"

And this is Jake Ryan
"Dudes Hail and Hello....Seamus and I should be totally awesome friends, 
cause Dudes we are both part totally most awesome Great Pyrenees Dude-Dogs!

I'm the Lady....we have been on a break from fostering for our friends a Fluffy Dog Rescue for a few months....Summer Time and the living was easy.....we had a few friend dogs staying with us while their families were on vacation...but that is all over and we are really looking forward to meeting Seamus and helping him find his forever home....
Check back next week and follow us on our Journey 
The Lady......