This is Gus

by Frank and Cheryl

Gus and his Smile

Gus and his Smile

We call him Gus, but he is...

Pyrennial’s One of a Kind, CGN, Therapy

Born May 5, 2006, to Sire: Aba Limberlost Remy and Dam: Ch. Pyrennial’s Chantilly Lace, Gus is definitely “One of a Kind”.

Gus is a very vocal dog. Even as a very small puppy, his breeder, Ann, referred to him as “Grumpy Gus”, as he displayed his grumpy puppy growl very early in life.

Gus now lives in rural Ottawa, surrounded by 500 acres of trees and all the wildlife it brings. It is fair to say that he has not gotten any quieter. Any intruder onto “his” property, which is far more property than we own, is announced vigorously. This includes birds at the feeders, butterflies on the Lilac and visitors to our neighbour across the road from our house. Robins on the lawn are not ignored either. He is determined to run off those killer Robins!

We run a very active teaching art studio from home so there is a steady stream of students, visitors and delivery people. Each one receives a vocal announcement and a Pyr review. Once everyone is settled down for class in the downstairs studio, Gus takes up position at the top of the stairs and keeps an eye on his “flock”. Students are reminded of his presence by the occasional low rumbling growl that punctuates the class routine. Students can be sure that no harm will come to them under his watchful eye.

A Great Pyr’s ability to “read” a situation is legendary, and Gus is no exception. A first-time visitor receives very different treatment than a returning visitor, but only if that returning visitor has been previously welcomed to the studio. When he senses bad energy that welcome is never extended.

Gus has also demonstrated an incredible ability to detect sickness… or maybe it is vulnerability he detects. My Dad was afflicted with Alzheimer’s, which was quite advanced during his last visit here before his death. Gus immediately determined that something was not right and set about to “protect” my Dad throughout his entire visit. Wherever Dad went, Gus went too. And when my father sat, Gus laid at his feet. He was never more gentle and attentive. It was unique behaviour at the time. He displayed similar behaviour later during his exam to qualify as a Therapy dog.

Gus is walked regularly in the relative quite of the country. As a result we get to absorb everything around us and experience the very dramatic changes of each season. Gus is very sensitive to change… any change gets his attention. He is always working, always looking for any sign of danger. Nose, eyes, ears. They are always at work. He can detect a car approaching from over 2 kilometres away, long before I can. And the scent of something in the air can bring him to a stop and have him produce his deep warning growl. Mind you, I never see anything or smell anything, but he sure does.

We are blessed to have a Farmers’ Market that opens in the spring and closes in the fall. Gus is a regular weekly visitor. All of the regulars know Gus. He has been going there since he was a puppy. There are hundreds of dogs there; making it is a great place to socialize. And of course, as any Great Pyr owner will tell you, there is no end to the questions asked by dog lovers who meet him for the first time. Toddlers through seniors are drawn to this big, white, smiling ball of fur that “floats” through the market. Being a typical Great Pyr, Gus is calm and laid back and very much enjoys the attention. And he is quite capable of dismissing his admirer whenever he has had enough, as if to say: “That’s enough, let’s move on to my next subject.”.

It is said, “You don’t get the dog you want… you get the dog you need.”

I say: “We have cats to learn about cats. We have dogs to learn about ourselves.”. Gus constantly reflects my mood and my energy. I am still learning how to use that mirror since it is a rare gift and a tool we have little experience in using. But because of him, I have grown in my self-awareness and the effect of my energy on him and others.

Are Great Pyrs easy dogs to manage? No. Are they for everyone? No. But there is no other dog like it. Once you’ve shared your life with a Pyr… no other dog will do.

Comments for This is Gus

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Mar 07, 2017
Darling milo
by: Jeanette

Milo is such a darling. I have hade him since May 2016 at which time he was 18 months. I learned he was bottle fed and was the runt of his litter he is niw75 pounds ( USA pounds ) someone told me that is a little over 5 stone in U.K. .
He is part Pyrenees and St. Bernard and white Labrador retriever. He does so many wonderful pyr attitudes. I'm so grateful. I got him ats a rescue. He is an angel . Without training h e has assigned himself jobs.
-- my daughter is developmentally disabled he follows her and looks at her in a concerned way. He touches the tips of her fingers with his nose and he sez hmmmmmppf

-- she has epilepsy and he warns her in advance of a seizure so she lies down and won't hit her head. He also informs me so I'll help her
-- she has PTSD so he does and iterupt and comfort for her
-- I also have PTSD from the same life experience as she , he helps me in the same way.
-- when my other dog is fearful of loud noises Milo will interrupt the circle whining by licking his ears and mumbles and shoulder bumping then Milo makes a nest of himself around king until the loud noise stops. Then king even falls a sleep during a thunder storm
-- when king older and blind needs guide Milo will blow in kings face then grab kings collar and lead him
-- Milo was never taught any if this he taught it all to him self
-- -as a hobby I take him to the nursing home where the folks pet him and speak to him he and they smile the whole time .
I've had him8 months and he is amazing
Thank you

Apr 10, 2014
My Chum
by: Jud (Jamestown, Tn.}

Chumly is much like Gus.i forgot to ad on my first note that Chumly is a mix & his mother is a small pitbull mix which was a stray that showed up at our neighbor's house. my wife picked Chumly out of the liter. boy am I glad for Chumly soon became my dog. Chumly is now (at 2} more than twice as big as his mother. since she is black Chumly inherited some black spots & one side of his head is black, his ears are mostly black. by his shape he looks mostly pure Pyr. he sure acts pure pry. I can be petting him & all of a sudden he is looking around & ignoring me cause he's doing his job making sure our property is secure. I will try to get my wife to help me to upload some pictures soon. Everyone is right. once you own a Pyr, no other dog will do.

Jul 04, 2012
I know this dog!!
by: Bruno's Mom

Gus is like Bruno! I can be in the house and hear a "moaning" and soon the mailman's car drives in and when he gets out to bring me a package, he hits the same note that Bruno does (he is a singer). They really like each other.

My Bruno guards me like Gus guards you all. I thought for a long time he'd welcome in a killer, but after reading all these articles, I am more at ease that he will "know" what is going on.

He was a rescue and I learned many lessons from him. I was tempted to throw in the towel a few times, but I realized he loved me, but he is a "Pyr". I have had big dogs all my life, but none ever behaved like a Pyr.

Bruno comes when he is called, but it may take a minute or two. He says I love you ONLY when he is asking for a treat. We have been together 6 years now, and I have hip and back problems, but he acts completely content.

By the way, he wear a laser beam Pet Safe collar and he broke through once to get to me on the mower, but never since. He's a big white angel!!

Jun 18, 2012
by: Anonymous

We too have a Gus (sired by Gustave so he became Gustavson) he is an amazing friend and partner to Maremma Gracie... we live in BC with many bears... they keep them away and keep us all safe and able to live without fear... could never possibly live without my wonderful Pyr... he is our second. our first Sampson was just as wonderful.

Apr 10, 2012
I have a Gus too!
by: Stacia

Love this site and your funny Pyr stories. I will be joining and then your Gus will have some competition! Mine sounds exactly like yours does:)

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