Golden Pond Farms

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Great Pyrenees History

(FYI - Please scroll down past the rediculous but imperative amount of information noted below to see pictures and information about each of our permanent collection of Great Pyrenees on the farm. This is where you can check out the parents to our puppies as well!)

The great pyrenees originally came from Central Asia or Siberia between 1800-1000 bc between France and Spain, of south-western Europe. These magnificent dogs were used as guardians of the flock. They were a valuable companion to the shepherds. AKC recognized the first pair brought to the U.S., which was a gift from General Lafayette to J.S. Skinner in 1842.

The Pyrs are territorial and livestock guardian dogs. They are considered "working dogs". If they are put into a farm environment, no training to protect other animals or livestock is necessary, however, they do guard by their instincts. They are very intelligent dogs, and can be very independent, although, when it come to socializing with people, they are just big teddy bears.

They are very loving and love attention from people. Do not consider a pyr for a security protection dog. They do however make wonderful pets and companions and have such a great personality. More are sold for family pets than for livestock protectors, but their size is very intimidating. They have become a very popular breed because of their size and their "regal" appearance. Saying that they are intelligent is an understatement they are simply an amazing breed. Nicknamed "gentle giants" their long list of character traits is phenomenal.

For more info please view some of these great sites:

American Kennel Club

Great Pyrenees club of america

How Does a Pyrenees Jump A fence?

Ladie Bug Ladie Bug Ladie Bug

Most commonly asked Great Pyrenees Questions...

1. Do they shed?

Yes, yes and yes! Outdoor pyrenees shed in the spring and again in the Fall (a little lighter than in the spring), but an indoor pyr will shed lightly throughout the year. Shaving is not advised because that is how they naturally protect themselves from the heat and the cold, but they must be brushed regularly in order to keep from matting and being forced to shave. If they are shaved too close they can sun burn, but if you must shave do not go any shorter than an inch. Their coat will be much prettier and silkier if they are never shaved. You can shave their bellies all the way to the skin to help them stay cooler and not risk being sun burnt. I highly recommend brushing your house dog twice a week to help keep their coat from matting and thiswill help (not cure!) their shedding. It is very important to part the hair and brush the undercoat, not just the top coat in order to fully help them from matting. Pyrs have self cleaning hair that dirt will just fall off of if taken care of properly. If brushed regularly, they do not even need to be bathed often. They are not a smelly dog which is very nice!

2. What are those things on their back feet? Are they deformed?

No these are called double dewclaws and they are a trait of a Great Pyrenees. The Pyrenees are working dogs that are indigenous to the Pyrenees Mountains in between Spain and France and their dewclaws give them stability in the rough terrain. It is also thought that the double dewclaws act as snow shoes for them. All nails including the dewclaws need to be trimmed regularly or the dewclaws can grow in a circular fashion and grow into the pad.

4. Do they drool?

Some of them do if they have loose flews (or lips) and can be common when drinking water, or when they are hot or nervous (even my non droolers will have a pool around them at the vet clinic).

5. What is their life span?

On average they can live about the same as any large breed dog about 10-12 years.

6. How big do they get?

Males on average weigh 100 - 120 lbs and females weigh 85 to 100 lbs. Of course their weight has so many determining factors such as if they have been neutered / spayed, lifestyle (are they really active and always running outdoors or are they lazy house dogs that go on an occassional walk) and their eating habits. I have had males and females alike reach 150 - 160 lbs. This can be bad on their joints if they do not reach this weight naturally. Large breed dogs must have lots of excercise if kept as a house pet. Please give them a lot of outdoor playtime or you will need to take them on lots of walks.

7. Aren't they impossible to train?

I always hate getting this one! Yes it is a joke among many pyr lovers that they are stubborn, but they are so smart and if trained properly very easy to train. Pyrs were bred to be working herd protection dogs and were entrusted to solely watch the herds in the mountains. This means that it is strong in their instincts to think for themselves and protect at all cost. If they hear something or sense danger for their herd (or family if a house pet) it is very difficult to break their concentration. These traits have given the pyr a reputation of being stuborn and being selective, but they really aim to please and are a very sensitive breed. If you start training them as a puppy before the bad habits set in, you will be amazed what all they can do. Bad habits are extremely hard to break though so be mindful when they are young. My favorite was a customer that had trained her two boys to sit before they would be shown any attention. These two giants would come running across the pasture and quickly sit at your feet to be petted. Try training them early on not to jump up, even though it's cute when they are a 50 lb. puppy, one day they might be a 120 lb. dog that you do not want jumping on you.

8. Will they get along with other animals dogs, cats, chickens...etc.?

Yes, it is 100% in their nature to get along with other animals as long as they are raised with these animals and introduced properly. These gentle giants will get along with almost anything as long as they are raised properly. I have had pyrs sleep with roosters, bunnies, wrestle with donkeys, nurse goats, clean cats and put up with a lot from other breeds of dogs. However, if it does not belong in the fence it will not be "in" the fence anymore. This goes from coyotes, stray dogs, stray cats, a peacock that they did know existed at the front of your property that flew to their pastureon the back of your property (I speak from experience). The sooner you can get your puppy with other animals the better. We recommend at 3 months once all of their vaccinations have been given. Please do not put a puppy that has not been given their 12 week vaccinations fully in the pasture where they may be susceptible to disease. You can bring them in the house just until they are 3 months but then it is very important to get them out of the house and in with the animals ASAP. If you do not wish to bring them in the house and you do not have appropriate housing in a barn or stalls you can put them in a garage or basement until fully vaccinated. After 3 months get your pup out with the other animals to stay as long as they cannot hurt the other animals but I would only put them in at first while you supervise to make sure your animals are safe and can get away if needed. You also have to make sure your puppy is safe as well. We had a mother goat break a puppies leg once because he was too close to her babies. I like to start my puppies in training with the young goats that have pleanty of high places to escape from the puppy if needed. Once the puppy gets big enough to follow the kids to any location I will move them with the adult goats and llamas until they have learned to jump the gates.

9. They can climb?

Yes many can and mine are encouraged to climb in order to do their jobs fully. As shown in the pictures above, we have special gates that make climbing a gate easier so they may go from pasture to pasture to protect. That is the best thing of having a pyr as a guardian protector. Llamas and donkeys are great but they can only protect the area that they are in, but the pyrs can protect all of your property. All of my working pyrs pick a different area at night to post up and if any one dog hears something they will call out and all of the others will come flying. Of course I do not want my house dog knowing that he can climb so I have a tall privacy fence that is not made to climb. Some can be more difficult to keep confined to your back yard because it is in their nature to roam so make sure your yard is very secure before you decide to buy a pyr. Once they learn they can it is much more difficult to keep them in. Females in heat have a greater need to want to roam. If you are not planning on breeding your female I highly recommend having her spayed. If you are not going to spay her please keep a special watch on her while she is in heat and I would mark on the calendar every time she is in heat to give you a better idea to keep up with when she will go into heat again. They will go into heat every 6 months.

10. How much do they eat?

Not nearly as much as you would think! Yes as puppies they do eat a lot, but after they have matured their metabolism slows down a lot and they do not eat a large amount. An active breed will eat much, much more. A large bag of dog food will last about 4-5 weeks.

11. Should we get a male or a female for a working dog, or a house dog?

Either a male or a female will make a great working or house dog and I really just can't say enough great things about either one! However, if I could only have one as a working dog I would have a female. I recommend having both over just one and I never recommend only having one working pyr on a farm. One pyr can protect your livestock from predators but if they have to defend against a pack of coyotes, that could be a different story. We lost one of our female pyrs a long time ago because the other pyrs had accidentally been locked in the barn and she couldn't fight off the pack by herself. We now have 8 working pyrs and squirrels will even think twice about coming on our property.

Back to the original question...Females are more active and will patrol more, they will also act as midwives and clean off newborn kids, lambs and llamas (no donkeys or they will get kicked by the momma donkey). They will make sure all airways are cleaned out and will get the blood circulating by rolling the babies if necessary. They will also clean up all after birth and mess from the newborn. This will probably gross you out the first time, but this goes back to their instincts to protect the herd and keep predators from catching the scent. A male could also do this but my females have always been the first on the scene and a male has never been given the chance. Females are also more aggressive working dogs but can also be on the needier side when it comes to wanting attention. Males are the muscle and like to be called into action when needed and otherwise not bothered. Some will patrol more than others but on average they will be taking a nap until they are needed. Whether a working dog or a house dog, the males are on average calmer, lazier and are happy with a gentle rub and little attention while the females are fighting over each other to get all of your attention. As a working dog they really do make the dream team to have both a male and a female, the brains and the muscle!! For a house pet it really just depends on what you are looking for. If you are wanting a more playful and active dog I would get a female, and if you are wanting more of a relaxed cuddle buddy I would think about a male. Of course there are exceptions to ever rule but this has been my experience with both genders.

12. Are they destructive?

As a puppy...YES! As an adult...NO! Yes the puppy phase can be a rough experience for some and if bored many puppies will turn to destruction. We have lost many water hoses on the farm and I have lost many shoes at home with my pyr house dogs too! Keep lots of toys for them to play with and start them off from the beginning with nice big hard to tear apart toys. The minute you start with nice plush toys that tear apart in two seconds they never want to go back to the kong or tire toys. On the bright side they will teach you to pick up after yourself a little bit better!

13. Do they make good family dogs?

YES! They are the absolute best dogs that I have ever had with kids (as you might be able to tell looking at the picture at the top of my 1 1/2 years old daughter swimming through a sea of pyrs). They are extremely patient with children and will look after them as their own herd. Sometimes they don't know their own strength and do not realize how much their paw weighs so try to train them early on not to jump up and paw at you or your children.

14. Can they handle Georgia summers or other warm climates?

Yes. Pyrenees are an ancient breed and were used as working dogs all over the globe. Their hair has a double coat that magically protects them for the heat and the cold and the wet. This doesn't mean they won't get hot but they will find ways to cool down. Sometimes that means digging a big hole in your backyard to let the red clay cool them off or finding a shady shelter under a deck, trailer, dog house...etc. You will see a big difference in their personalities in the colder months.

15. Can I bring my working dog inside sometimes or take them out for fun?

No. I do not recommend bringing your working dog inside the house after 3 months old or taking them off your property unless necessary to go to the vet and so forth. Doing so can mess with the mentality of a working dog and cause them to lose focus and not protect your animals the way they are supposed to. I am not a breeder that believes in not socializing your working pyr, but I do belive there is a line that you need to be careful not to cross. Even though they become our family it is important to remember that they have a job to do and you do not want to interfere with that.

16. Do they bark a lot?

Yes many of them do. Again this is in their instincts of being a working dog and protecting the herd. Barking warns the others that there is something to pay attention to and warns the predator that they know they are there. For the working dog this is the best defense and keeps the predators from even coming on your property, but for the house dog it can drive your neighbors crazy!

15. I had a purebred black pyrenees before...

(This is not a question but I felt the need to list this statement and answer anyways)

No you didn't! Pyrenees are solid white and some can have black, grey or tan badger markings. Some can even have a lot of badger markings with large patches covering their body, but there is not a solid black pyrenees, not a purebred at least.

If you have any other questions that I did not answer please send me an e-mail and I will be more than happy to answer.

 

THE GPF BREEDERS

"Khaleesi"

D/O/B 7/20/16

(GPF Luke X Maddy Blue)

OFA Certificate:

Too young to be tested

 

"Brienne of Tarth"

D/O/B 11/13/16

(GPF Luke X GPF Maddie)

OFA Certificate:

Too young to be tested

 

Aurora the Great Pyrenees

"Aurora" Borealis

D/O/B 11/21/13

(Lindsay's Snowball X Lindsay's Snow Angel II)

OFA Certificate:

Hips: GOOD / Elbows: NORMAL

Weight - 105 lbs.

Aurora

 

Maddie

GPF "Maddie"

D/O/B 12/29/12

(GPF Bandit X GPF Kadie)

OFA Certificate:

Hips: GOOD / Elbows: NORMAL

Weight - 90 lbs.

Maddie

Lady Bug

GPF "Ladie Bug"

D/O/B 11/19/10

(GPF Sadie X GPF Bandit)

OFA Certificate:

Hips: FAIR / Elbows: NORMAL

Weight - 100 lbs.

Ladie Bug

Kadie

GPF "Kadie" (RETIRED)

D/O/B 3/19/08

(Idylwood Polar Bear X Idylwood Cloud Nine)

OFA Certificate:

Hips: GOOD

Weight - 95 lbs.

Kadie

 

Storm

GPF Majestic "Storm"

D/O/B 2/7/08

(Idylwood Polar Bear X Idylwood Winter Storm)

OFA Certificate:

Hips: GOOD

Weight - 125 lbs.

Storm

Luke

General "Luke"

D/O/B 11/21/13

(Lindsay's Snowball X Lindsay's Snow Angel II)

OFA Certificate:

Hips: GOOD / Elbows: NORMAL

Weight - 130 lbs.

Luke

"Jon Snow"

D/O/B

OFA Certificate:

Too young to be tested

Ladie Bug

"Ladie Bug"

Aurora and Lucy

My house dog Aurora and her "herd" my 3 year old Lucy

 
Denali the Great Pyrenees Denali the Great Pyrenees
Our newest male addition Captain Harris Denali

Kadie the Great Pyrenees

 

Aurora

Aurora (right) and Bowzer (left) my lazy house dogs!

R.I.P

You were all loved very, very much and will NEVER be forgotten.

Each one of our dogs are a member of our family and are loved and respected until the very end.

Cookie

R.I.P. Cookie

We lost Cookie tragically in 2015 after contracting Pyometra (an infection in the uterus that any female dog that has not been spayed is susceptible to). We did an emergency hysterectomy at the first sign of any problems, but she was not able to overcome the infection and we lost her a week later.

It was a terrible way to lose a dog and Cookie will forever be missed!

Bandit

R.I.P. Bandit

Bandit had to be put to sleep January 2014 after getting bone cancer. He was so tough that he hid it from us all until it was too late. He was a legacy to our farm and an amazing pyr! He was 10 years old when he passed.

 

 

Sadie

R.I.P. Sadie

Sadie developed bone cancer that caused her ankle to appear extremely swollen, but it was the cancer. We could have bought her two more months and had the leg removed, but we couldn't do that to her. She was loved and spoiled until it was time and she let me know when that day was. She was fed cheese burgers and put to sleep by our vet. She was then laid to rest on the farm.

 

Madonna

R.I.P. Madonna

Madonna was our first pyrenees and the reason we fell so in love with this breed. She made it the age of 13 and was an amazing dog up until the last day!

 

SugarBear

R.I.P. Sugar Bear

Sugar Bear didn't make it quite as long as Madonna. She only lived to 11 yrs. old, but she also loved to steal bagles, doughnuts and chocolate cake. She might not have been as healthy and she lived a shorter life because of it, but she was truly happy every day!

 

 

 

 

Dot & Sweet Pea

In memory of Sweet Pea - "Gone but not forgotten"

(Sweet Pea was Dot's mother and lost her life protecting the whole farm from a pack of coyotes in 2005)

Lucy and Ladie Bug

Lucy and Ladie Bug

Lucy and Ladie Bug

Lu Lu Bug and Ladie Bug

Pyrenees

Sadie helping out with my maternity shoot!

Pyrenees

Another pyr photo bombing my photograph session (Look in the back right corner and you might see a Ladie Bug!)

Pyrenees giving a llama a kiss

Lady Bug giving out kisses!!

Dottie

Miss Dottie allowing lucky the goat to nurse...such a good mommy - March 09'

 

 

Bandit

Bandit being the good shepherd

 

 

 

Kadie

Kadie jumping the fence as most pyrenees can do

 

 

Bandit with sheep

Bandit watching over the sheep

 

Sweetpea the midwife

Sweetpea the midwife

 

Bandit and Milo

Bandit checking out the new born llama

 

Diesel and Storm

Diesel the Doberman sitting on Storm

Pyrenees

Storm, Kadie and Sadie

Sadie and LadyBug

Sadie and LadyBug

We are proud members of the following animal organizations:

783 Holland Road | Powder Springs, GA 30127 | Lindsey Morrison Phone: (770) 722-6669 | E-mail: llh6490@yahoo.com

National Pygmy Goat AssociationNPGA-Logo

International Llama Registry

ILR

American Kennel Club

AKC LOGO

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