Do great pyrs like to go for runs?

by John
(California)

Does pyres like to go on long runs?

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Jun 07, 2016
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Runs
by: Donna

In short, no. Pyrs are not built for long distance running as most dogs are not.

Dogs prefer to go at their own pace which is sniff, walk, run wildly for a bit, play, then walk, sniff etc. You get the picture.

Pyrs are guardian livestock dogs meant to wander with their livestock as they watch over them.

Pyrs like their walks and hikes but they are not high energy dogs.

Here is an abridge version of what Pyrs are about:

NEVER use it as punishment. Never punish dogs. Always use positive-reinforcement training.

In short, here are some of the things to be expected from a Pyr:

They are beautiful dogs with great temperaments given the right breeding, socialization, care including diet and training.

They require a good weekly grooming to keep them mat free and their skin healthy (hence, pain free from the pulling of mats as they move), and cutting their nails including their dew claws every couple of weeks to a month.They molt twice a year and all year round so your vacuum stays full. NEVER shave a Pyr. Their double coats keep them cool in summer and warm in winter. If you don't like grooming, take your dog to a master groomer.

Their instinct it to wander. Therefore, they require at least a 6-foot secure fence in a large yard in which they can play, run and watch over. No tie outs for these guys. It can lead to aggression since they cannot fully watch over their territory. If they are out all day, as they usually prefer, they need shelter from the elements.

They bark more than most dogs and neighbours do complain. That is a common reason for people surrendering their Pyrs (they didn't do their research). Their bark is what deters predators and it is instinct to them. That and marking their territory. To take away their bark is to take away who they are. The barking can be managed but it takes time, patience and consistency with positive-reinforcement training. If you don't like barking, they are not the dog for you.

They dig holes in your garden to stay cool in summer.

They require a lot of socialization as pups onward with people and other dogs. They also require positive-reinforcement training (a trainer who shows you how to work with a clicker). Pyrs, nor any dogs, take kindly to any kind of punishment. It will lead to aggression. Dr. Sophia Yin is a great website resource.

It's important to work with the dogs as if in a dance and you are leading. Rewards for good behaviour and redirect for unwanted behaviour. It's up to you to make them a good canine citizen. When engaging a trainer, ensure they use positive-reinforcement training and show you how to manage your dog. Never send a dog away for training. You are the one working with the dog, not a trainer.

To train a Pyr is not like training some other dogs. They are not eager-to-please and just as soon walk away from you than do as you say. They were bred by man to be used as guardian livestock dogs because they do not require human intervention to tell them how to do their job. Lots of patience, consistency and time is required to work with them. If you want an obedient dog, this is not the dog for you.

They require regular walks, of course, so they get out and see the world. They must be leashed because they will wander. Again, because they are so good at wandering they have been used to wander with sheep as they watch over them. It's suggested to use a front lead harness which will cut down on any damage to the spine should the dog pull although, with a little work from puppyhood, they should be good on a leash.

There are those in need of a home because someone didn't realize they would get so big, bark so much, leave so much hair in the house, wander, and require work. Or, they ended up going to a backyard breeder or farmer and ended up with a dog who was aggressive because of bad breeding. Or, they forgot they travel a lot or a baby is on the way and they just don't want the dog, anymore.

It is very important to do your research on any breed before deciding if they are a good match for your family. Please start here:

http://www.great-pyrenees-club-of-southern-ontario.com/Great-Pyrenees.html

Regarding dogs and children. We never want to see these dogs fail so it's important that children learn how to behave with dogs and that parents never leave their children alone with a dog. Here is a link on that subject:

http://www.great-pyrenees-club-of-southern-ontario.com/bestdogsforchildren.html

Jun 07, 2016
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That's in short?
by: Ed A from NJ

Wow Donna I am glad you gave the short answer!

But, of course, your right on point. About 8 years, ago when my Buttercup was young, my wife decided she was going to run a half marathon. She also decided she would train early mornings in the park and bring Butter along for security.

I told her I didn't think so, but the first day, I would go to the park to watch them run. I told her not to run the path until she tested Butter so,they were going to run laps around the tennis courts.

She thought a light 5 laps to start slow. Off they went with Buttercup in the lead. When they were halfway around the first lap, Butter stopped and lay down.

Butter was fine but the Pyrenees stubborn streak hit and rightfully so. Who tries to make a princes run?

Lucky my SUV is 4 wheel drive. I went and got Butter. The funny thing is for 2 days after that Buttercup would not let my wife pet her and got up and moved every time Ellen tried to get close to her.

Pyrenees really will only excert themselves in a protection mode. They don't play ball or frisbee.

They have a very serious side. Bonding with your Pyrenees is best done on the sofa, in the shade, by the grill, and in any old snow fall. They are great dogs but they clearly will let you know there limitations.

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