Great Pyrenees Breed

General Information

Dog Name: Great Pyrenees (Nickname: Pyr)

Dog breed Group: Working dogs

Size Category: Large dog breeds

Height: Ranges from two feet, one inch to two feet, eight inches (measured from the shoulder).

Weight: Ranges from 85 to 160 pounds.

Lifespan: Ranges from 10 to 12 years.

Brief History

The Great Pyrenees is an impressive dog breed with a humble beginning. It’s thought to have originated over ten thousand years ago in Asia Minor, when shepherds decided that they needed canine assistance. Originally owned by peasants, the Great Pyrenees eventually caught the eye of the monarchy, and in 1675 it was named the Royal Dog of France. This title proved the catalyst for the Great Pyrenees, as they were soon being exported to North America and all over Europe. The breed suffered during the two World Wars, but nowadays it has been restored to its former glory.

Dog Breed Characteristics

A. Protection Ability

The Great Pyrenees was bred to guard flocks, and they have retained this protective instinct. They are typically placid until provoked, and they can put up an intimidating fight against intruders.

B. Ease of Training

The Pyr is a large dog and so absolutely needs to be trained. They are very intuitive and have an excellent memory, but dog training can be difficult due to their overly sensitive nature. This breed responds well to gentle, positive reinforcement – they will quickly shut down and become timid when trained harshly.

C. Playfulness

This breed can seem quite sober at times, as they enjoy spending time alone and are very docile. They are very affectionate to their owners (in fact, they are a popular choice of therapy dog), and despite their size Pyrs are very gentle. Whilst they aren’t the most energetically playful breed, there is no doubt that they will make their owners feel their love.

D. Exercise needs

This breed needs at least 30 minutes of exercise each day (quite a small amount for a dog of their size). They love hiking and will cheerfully carry backpacks and supplies for their owners, but extra caution must be taken during hot weather to ensure they don’t overheat.

E. Adaptability

The Great Pyrenees is likely to be too challenging for first-time owners. They need lots of space in which to roam around, and due to their size they are prone to exhaustion in the summer. Ideally, Pyrs need attentive, energetic owners who can give them the unique style of care they require.

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