When we get
As livestock guardian dogs, they don’t behave like most breeds. They bark, they dig, they roam, and they’re very independent.
I love Great Pyrenees—that’s no secret. But, I don’t promote them
If you want a Great
You don’t like barking—especially at night
When people are interested in a Great Pyrenees and ask me about my experiences, I always start by saying that they bark a lot.
Like all. the. time.
This comment is usually followed by, “Oh, my *insert breed here* barks a lot too. At everything. So barking isn’t a big deal—we’re used to it.”
I can tell you that it’s unlikely that your dog barks as much as a pyr or other livestock guardian dog (LGD). Regardless of how much barking I try and prepare people for, they never believe me—until they add a pyr to their family.
Then I get the email: “Oh my gosh, I had no idea that dogs could bark that much!”
If you think you know
Related: Will My Great Pyrenees Bark All the Time?
You don’t have a fence
There’s a reason most rescues require a 6 ft fence for Great Pyrenees.
Pyrs can easily scale fences, require solid fencing, and
You won’t have much luck with invisible fences either. Pyrs have an incredibly high pain tolerance and won’t think twice about the shock.
If you don’t have a fence and want a Great Pyrenees, you’ll need to be able to commit to leash walking and other safe ways to exercise your dog.
Regardless if you have a sturdy fence or not, I am a big fan of GPS collars to easily track down your floof!
You want an off-leash dog
If you dream of walking along the beach with your pyr trotting along beside you or going to a hike while your dog frolics through the woods, you probably shouldn’t get a Great Pyrenees.
The vast majority of Great Pyrenees cannot be off-leash.
The saying goes: an off-leash pyr is a disapyr.
Atka can be off-leash in certain situations, but it has to be a pretty low key environment. Mauja and Kiska can never be off-leash. There have been several times that I’ve seen their
Everything goes back to this: Great Pyrenees are livestock guardian dogs.
They think their territory is as far as they can roam, and they’ll constantly test the limits. If you keep that in the front of your mind, you’ll never question your pyr’s behavior.
It’s like Mufasa said: “Everything the light touches is our kingdom.”
Related: How to Prevent Great Pyrenees Roaming
You want a trick dog
Pyrs are incredibly smart, but they aren’t usually interested in tricks and obedience. This doesn’t mean they can’t be trained—they just typically have better ideas.
“You want me to sit? Okay, I’ll sit, but I’m going to do it 15 feet away.”
“You want me to shake? Ehh… not really in the mood right now. Try again later.”
Shake, come, and down are trivial to them. They have more important things to focus on: protecting you and the rest of their flock.
This doesn’t mean that pyrs can’t be trained. They’re incredibly smart and need to be challenged. Just don’t expect it to be like training a Golden Retriever!
Related: 10 Tips for Training Great Pyrenees
You like a well-manicured lawn
Or at least one without giant craters.
I wish I had pictures of our lawn before we moved in. It wasn’t perfect, but it was a nice-looking yard.
Fast forward two
We tried to fence it off to grow grass, but they would just climb over and lay on the seeds. We eventually gave up.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve twisted my ankle or knee walking through the yard!
There are ways to minimize digging (like by building a digging box), but there’s always going to be a new place they want to dig. Mauja likes to try and remove the grass so she can lay on the cool dirt.
Related: Great Pyrenees Tips (from people who know the breed)
You don’t like brushing—or vacuuming 10 times a day
Grooming Great Pyrenees is
If I want to do a full grooming session—bath, brush, ears, nails, teeth, and paw trimming—I need to set aside a day to get all three dogs done. Even then, I sometimes have to spread it out over a few days so I don’t completely wear out.
You’ll also need to be prepared to vacuum multiple times per
Everything sticks to their coats and is brought inside. Some days, we have more leaves and small twigs around the house than fur. I’m not sure which I’d prefer!
Related: 5 Must-Have Tools for Grooming Great Pyrenees
What are other reasons a Great Pyrenees might not be for someone?
Judi crockett says
If you have a problem with drool – long long slimy sticky strings of drool on clothing, across their own nose, all over my golden retrievers after pyr play.
Stephanie Cruickshank says
Lol…it IS gross. But so what and haha!!
If I had read this before getting my 8 week old rescue or done any research at all I never would have gotten her but she was so cute & I didn’t know what a Pyr was. So home she came. The 1st year was a huge learning curve. I read all I could on the breed. I was terrified but thanks to a horrible childhood that gave me abandonment issues I refused to give up & took her to every class I could find, trained her as a therapy dog to give her a job & loved her no matter what she did or destroyed. It wasn’t easy but I believe there are no bad dogs, just bad owners. I now have 2 Pyrs but no yard, lots of holes, chewed furniture, very vocal Pyrs, enough fur & dirt inside to make another yard & a clogged vacuum but I wouldn’t change it for the world. I am thankful every day for them but I’m not typical. Think & research 1st!!❤️
<3 LOVE <3
i never wanted one and cant imagine i ever will, but i absolutely admire you for sticking with it and honoring your commitment – the way i think it should ALWAYS be when animals are involved, but sadly, we all know there are too many people for whom "commitment" is a nice idea, but comes with all sorts of exceptions (excuses).
Stephanie Cruickshank says
I love you Sister/Brother!!!
Charlie Russom says
Mrs. Cruickshank, a large solid white dog was found on our deck. Skinny and scared. I gave it some water and some dog food. A friend told me to look at the Pyrenees to try to identify the breed. We live out in the county and she has gotten use to us and plays and has the run of the 6 acres, and beyond. If there was 1 thing to positively identify a pyr, what would it be? I think she is still a pup. Came up about a week ago.
Shawn Sisler says
Double back dewclaws, white nails, black nose, lips, and paw pads. I have a 2-year-old GP, Po, and can confirm most of this article. The barking is because they are capable of hearing miles away, they hear stuff we can’t and we can’t see. Po knows daddy’s truck and barks when he hears it coming, literally a mile away. Good things to know are they are hypo-allergenic, loving, playful when outside, and usually very lazy inside, and if they are socialized well they do amazing with kiddos. I wouldn’t trade my boy for anything. He’s a rescue and was abused, yet harbors no aggressive traits. Oh, and great with other animals.
Doug Maisel says
I just lost miine. Omar was all Pyr, as described. A great soul. But I declined the Pyr puppy well-meaning friends urged on me to ease my grief.
Wow, Roseann, we have so much in common. I grew up with dogs, as my mother was a dog trainer. I always said, I wanted a Golden Retriever when I got married, and I did, in 1991. The I had a Black Lab, a Bernese Mountain do, a lad/rot mix, another golden. until 2018. I said, spur of the moment, how about a Pyreness. In 2 days, I had one purchased through a breeder that my mother knew. OMG. I wish I did research on this breed before hand. But, I do love her. The barking, especially at night, so we have to lock her in the house, due to neighbors not happy. The taking items and running outside, and destroying. The not listening, being stubborn. BUT, she has been trained and is a Therapy dog for our local hospital and library. Wish I would of known things prior. LOL
Fran Fridman says
We’ve had Gr. Pyres for the last 30 years. Two at a time. Only the 1st was a puppy that we purchased from a breeder. All the rest were adopted. When one died we adopted one to replace it. Now we have 2 mixed 1/2 Pyrenees/1/2 St Bernard. We’ve only had them a month. Since we never had a St. Bernard – I cannot really specify differences mostly because each of our adopted Pyres had different backgrounds and personalities. These 2 are amazing. I’m now trying to get them to lay down on command. They’ve learned to sit on command and hand gesture. Sometimes obedience training is difficult and you have to learn what works for each dog.
Todd Glover says
I rescued mine a year and a half ago. He was 6 months old. Someone left him at a campground. He ran loose for 3 months. He’s still a work in progress but a loveable as can be. He’s got me pretty well trained already.
Eric Kemp says
Agree! Our Pyr is such a joy to own!!!
Marty McCaffrey says
Barking I don’t mind, I just open the door, take him out and let him see for himself it’s OK! All bets are off if a garbage truck appears anywhere!
Digging is not so bad, but god forbid there’s mud in the yard, he’ll find it and roll in it till he’s brown.
Escape artist! Absolutely, have a fifty foot leash to give him the feeling of roaming, speaking of which, he’s adopted all the neighbors kids! They help when he escapes! Usually through the front door!
Grooming, I actually like the bonding time!
What you didn’t mention is that they want to be the center of attention .
Loves water if it’s not past his chest.
Did manage to train him with the normal things, sit, sit up, paw, come, drop, speak ( easy) stay (not so much) but his two absolute favorite games are chase and hide and seek!
A little patience and a yard = Best dog ever!
I love my Cotton! He is exceptional. Rarely barks, is trained off leash, and verbal commands! He is my love! I’m so thankful for him and how wonderful he is!
I have a Great Pyr/Heeler mix. Love her to death! Rarely barks either, does well with underground fence. My other two dogs showed her the boundaries. Took her out to show her and she wouldn’t walk down by me at the line, but walked too close at the end of the line once and jumped, looking back to see who bit her. She doesn’t listen too well, but she is just almost 6 months old. And hates to have her nails done. I have to wrestle her and calm her down. She’s a lovable mess! We’ll see how she turns out…it’ll be interseting.
Big fan of fluff says
Yes pyrs are hard dogs 🐶 but very intelligent 🤓 in a way (which means digs and gets out cage like once a month)
But the best i have trained my fluff ball is sit,give paw and up that’s the best but I wouldn’t trade him for the world 💕
Andrea Miller-Merritt says
I feel the same about mine! He is the sweetest, loving gentle giant ever! He sits when I tell him to he lays down when I tell him to. He only barks when he hears other dogs barking and he is the best cuddler ever. Glad to see there are others that love them just as much as I do.
Deborah Beaton says
You seem to be the only one that says they can be trained off leash. I am looking at adopting a puppy he is Pyr and shepherd mix. I am hoping after reading this that he can be trained off leash and solid in stop sit. I think those are to of the most important commands if a situation arises and they are well trained when you say stop and sit that they do just that. They are such beautiful dogs.
I have a GP/Australian Shepherd mix who obeys every command & does not bark excessively. He lives inside, has never had an accident, does not destroy things (not even his toys). We walk miles each day off leash. I can even walk him thru downtown off leash. When it’s time to cross the street he knows to sit & look both ways. However, if he sees a cat, it’s all over with. He loves chasing cats 🙄. I wouldn’t trade him for the world.
Anca Fatu says
He must have more of the Aussie genes than the Pyr!😁
You guys are scaring I’m due to get my puppy in two weeks. I have four well behaved dogs now. Did you bring your gp to a doggie boot camp to become so well trained? How is yours so different then the nightmares describe above?
Stephanie Cruickshank says
Naomi Lucret says
I had 2 adult Pyr their pup and 2 goats show up on my property. They were all over fields before finding my house. The owner lives 3 miles away. He took every one home yesterday afternoon. By 8 pm the adults are back and sleeping on my porch. They’re very loving, but I feel like they’re not going to stop coming. I’m never turning them away. I know they need a bit more TLC for sure. What now? They are so relaxed here. A majority of My neighbors know the owner and are not fans at all.. They say they need our love..
John Hobson says
Oh, yes. My Pyrs consistently bark at the evil men who come to steal our garbage each week.
They are the most loyal best friend you will ever have but… everything that’s been told about barking, digging and a strong personality is all true.
Carol Campbell says
My Pyr HATES to be brushed. If I take out the brush, she runs into her crate. She is badly matted, so I need help.
Doing It For Dogs says
Please take her to a GROOMER. Like now. Like regularly.
Yes, take to groomer, they must be groomed !then try to introduce the brush to her daily, patience
I would start with scissors. get the matted hair gone. perhaps the brush hurts your pyr’s skin. use diluted hair conditioner after a bath. how about that stuff “No more tangles”? Use a different kind of comb/brush bristle. I have a long haired cat. he fights me unless I get in his face and make him understand that I am the Alpha cat and I make the rules.
Ann Bartholomew says
I know of what you speak. I have a female Turkish Van (long-haired cat) that would get over-stimulated with a pin brush & bite it. I use a regular hairbrush & she loves it.
Mane & tale (for horses & people) detangler!
Please hire a “rolling” groomer! They are the easiest way for your baby to be groomed! The groomers are trained to make the session as easy as possible on your fur baby!
Michelle Schnapp says
I take my Pyr to the groomer every 6 weeks. I used to be able to groom all my Pyrs in the past, but the one I have now is a failed LSD who had never lived in a house before mine. There were a lot of issues at first, but things are 100% better now. The grooming part hasn’t been like I’d like, but my groomer has taken care of all my Pyrs, my Newfie, Old English Sheep Dog & Leonberger that have gone to the Rainbow Bridge. My groomer loves my dogs & they’ve all loved her, so my life is much easier, lol.
Marlajean Hamby says
We rescued a 4 year old Pyr from our local shelter. No one would take him because he was so large. He had been there for 6 months and they were looking for a rescue sanctuary to take him. We are a very Senior Couple but still active, the Rescue agreed to let us take him on trial.
He is rarely alone and never for more than 3 hours. We fenced in a large part of our yard for him and walk him twice a day a mile each time. He learned that we were not going to let him chase the Squirrels and Wild Turkeys in our neighborhood pretty quickly, no problem. He hates cars, and trucks, especially the garbage truck. Any suggestion on how to stop him from trying to attack them while we are hanging onto the leash for dear life? He is super sweet and very affectionate, we would never give him up. We have even gotten used to the dog hair in and on everything!
Brenda Graves says
When you walk your baby, keep him close to your side. Don’t let him wall in front of you. I use a 12 inch leash and was able to walk 3 pyrs at on time with very little pulling after about 2 weeks walking twice a day. It takes time. I also used a choke chain, which I do not recommend for everyone, please consult a trainer on how to use properly. Keep in mind I was walking 3 at time, now that I only have 1 that I can take on walks I don’t need to use a choke chain anymore. I learned how to walk my babies by watching The Dog Whisperer. I hope this helps you, best of luck and Thank you so much for rescuing.
Our Pyr also is the most adorable and affectionate dog we have ever met … He loves to bark, and bark, and bark and chase Amazon trucks along our fence line. He absolutely hates garbage trucks and loud motorcycles .. LOL….. However, he brings so much love to our home, we can’t imagine our home without him…..
I absolutely love this article. And yes, it is ALL true, plus some!! I too did all of my research before owning a Pyr and committed. I too thought I had it all under control. Well, she taught me who was boss! Lol. But I wouldn’t trade them for the world and now we accommodate our life and house to their needs. I wouldn’t own another breed! They are the most loving, loyal dogs out there. Yes they are super stubborn and bark endlessly. But they are worth every second of frustration. I would never give my children up just because they are smart and independent and full of life. They are my children. And I am blessed they have chosen to protect me!
Everything is very open with a precise description of the challenges.
It was definitely informative. Your site is extremely helpful.
Thanks for sharing!
I am glad I didn’t know all the downfalls to owning a Pyr. Riley is my heart. I accept him the way he is. Got a little dicey when he out of the blue started dragging me. We squared that away and…hey we are family.
Cheryl Priddy says
None of this article was a reason for me not getting another pyr…. My reason is because when you have been loved by a pyr… When they cross the rainbow bridge…. They take part of your heart with them.. Its been several years since my family lost our Charlie…. And the hurt is still there…I miss him daily… That’s the hardest part for me…
I don’t know how old this post is, but I had to respond because we just lost our Artorous yesterday. He was one month from his 13th birthday. I can’t possibly find the words to describe my feelings. Over the last thirty years we have bought 3 as puppies, and rescued/adopted 4 Great Pyrs. Each one was unique, Tasha was 13 when she lost control of her legs, but my first pyr, Holli died at 7 (autoimmune disease). Nicki was estimated at ten yrs, and Rocki was abandoned at the local shelter. Velvadeer was a transport to a rescue, and Lisle came from a puppy mill at 4yrs. I’m older know, not sure if I can handle such a heartbreak again.
I guess I got lucky. I have had giant breeds before but my pyr is my first LGD. I got her from the top breeder in the country . She barks but not incessantly, she is 2 1/2 and has never been destructive . Has been left loose in the house since she was 8 months old. She is extremely affectionate and usually does what she is told. The only issue I ever had was she used to go into the parrots cage, pull out the dirty newspaper and sit and guard it. Snapped at me when I tried to take it. Did that once and I fixed the problem real fast. Now when she takes the paper and I say what do you have, she hides in the corner facing the wall. She is one of the best dogs I ever owned and despite the hair, she’s perfection
Elaine Tanner says
Will try that with my 10 month old. Just about got him off shoes an, boots and couches.
Our girl is 4 months and starting to shed cotton balls. She is a puppy so everything is a potential toy.,We do not chase her for anything. Teach come, treat at counter. Give, gently remove object and thank her. Treat. Take her to find her toy and treat . She is starting to drop the object and come for a treat now. She is testing what is a toy she is allowed and would prefer all shoes and toilet paper rolls:) I keep close watch when she is out free in the house.
Our Pry mix barked aggressively at every delivery/postal service worker who came to the door, until my daughter set him up with subscription toy & treat boxes. After the second delivery, Sarge caught on that getting boxes was awesome! Now he still barks at deliveries, but his tail is wagging and his tone is definitely not aggressive!
Jon Michael says
We’re on our third … the grandson of our first. This is a great article and is generally true in all respects. We have been successful with our invisible fence, but it’s also around 3+ acres and two creeks, so perhaps the significant size is sufficient to satisfy their, now his, wanderlust. I raised Dobermann’s for 20 years and thought I knew “smart” until our first Great Pyr … there is no contest … the Pyrs are the smartest, albeit most independent breed and therefore you can’t judge “smart” by teaching tricks … they can’t be bothered by stupid tricks … but present them with a complex problem and they’ll work thru it instantly and respond appropriately. They are amazing, loyal and loving …
Juanita Huisentruit says
Sooo true, my girls get on top of our firepit table so they can look over the fence to make sure no zombies are coming. They bark at a leaf falling from the tree. ( hey it might hit me on the head) We have a broom and dust pan in every room to gather hair and a shop vac in the living room at all times. Locks on all gates they know how to open them. Would I ever get rid of the most loving dogs I have ever had ? NEVER.
We went through 11 vacuums with our pair of pyrs but finally settled on a huge shop vac lol! Ours were well contained by a fence but angel was so smart she knew that hubby forgot to latch the extremely heavy 6’ tall wood gate that I needed help opening and out she went to see her boyfriend down the street. My friend had a pyr that has twice scaled the fence and went a few blocks to Walgreens and let himself in the automatic door. They said he walked in like he owned the place!
I have owned four Pyrs over the years & I absolutely love the breed. It takes dedication to train them as some days, they won’t comply, but there are things you can be successful at – such as not dragging you down the street as you’re walking them.
My latest Pyr was a LSD but apparently not very good at it. Wanted to spend time playing with the goats & people. I was unaware that he had never lived in a house before I adopted him, so there were a lot of challenges. I brush him weekly most times & I have him bathed & groomed every 3 months.
No matter the amount of frustration he has given me, I never had a thought of returning him to rescue. It just too more time than I anticipated. There is a lot of digging & he seems to LOVE being filthy, but it dries & you brush him & ta-da, he’s white again.
Do you research before you get a Pyr. They cause a lot of work with dirt & fur, and grooming, so if you’re not up to it, get a different breed. If you are up to it, you won’t ever be sorry!
They are actually huge white cats in disguise (-:
Our two are very independent– we even thought one of our Pyrs was deaf! But, no, he just has selective hearing. Now he throws his refrigerator – sized body across the door to the house to keep us outdoors in pet-me mode, rather than allowing us to go indoors. Very smart! Very angelic! Very dedicated and loving! Very much a unique creature with an endless supply of saliva and fur! Best dog ever– but certainly not for people who want a carefree pet! For one thing, Pyr owners are forever sleep-deprived! They keep us awake barking…but HE hears coyotes far, far away, and we don’t. Our “deaf” dog who can’t hear the word “come” or “treat” (yes, he ignores that one, too!) can hear the most distant predator. Tons of work; expensive grooming bills; tons of slobber…but worth it to a special kind of human! They are our angels and protectors!
Donna dibble says
EVERYTHING YOU SAID IS TRUE i’VE HAD THEM FOR ABOUT 30 YEARS RIGHT NOW i have one who dosent like any other dogs in his house HE WAS ACTUALLY RAISED WITH A GERMAN SHEPERD FOR YEARS AND SHE PASSED AWAY LAST YEAR AND i think he loves all the affection he gets except when he see’s me put on my scrubs and I CALL him in he becomes deaf and ignores me so I RETRIEVE FROM THE YARD This boy hasn’t chewed anything in 6 years but I have them chew my sectional So when I get a puppy I always say and what are you going to chew The drool on this boy is alot he’s areal wet mouth and I almost slipped in the kithcen LOL But it is my most Bloved Breed
Steve Kepple says
I adore our Pyrs and would probably die for them, just as I know they would die for me. But I wouldn’t want them in the house. They belong with our goats, as I see it and as they see it.
Dianne Wilks says
We had a Pyrenees . She came from a Breeder .As a Puppy…what an adorable ball of fluff. She grew rapidly.Loved exploring / from very young had her groomed regularly. Some of my friends knitted with their Pyrs Coat . Blankets / Sweaters etc. We went to classes . However in all our years together,I really never heard her Bark unnecessarily. So was surprised by these other Stories. Had many people that wanted her. However , only my Death would do that….one of my Favourite Breeds.
Mind you I also Loved immensely my Rottweiler. Our Pyrs Name was SASSY .
Our Rottweilers Name was HANNAH. Beautiful , Wonderful Pets . ♥️❤️🌺🌺🌺🌺
I have 2 pyrs and am shaking my head. They don’t bark all of the time. They do dig but the yard isn’t destroyed. There are a couple of good sized holes but in two places that they regularly station themselves to watch the place. And our fence, while strong isn’t 6 ft. They will not and have never jumped the fence. Now, honestly, they can smell an open gate or a hole in the fence but don’t jump. Not saying they couldn’t but they don’t.
My boyfriend just got me a pyr. She’s so beautiful. I’m going to continue to read the tips on how to manage her. But I’m pregnant and I want to know if they’re good with children?
WONDERFULwith them! So Genoa d protective. Best of luck!
I don’t know how old this post is, so sorry if old news. My big boy was 8 moths old when he came into my family. He played rough! Once, I had a black eye and Another time thought I broke my nose, not to mention lots of bruises. I am 5’5” and was taken off my feet numerous times. He was so gentle with my grandkids, but know that accidents will happen. Very protective. Stood between me and someone who meant harm.
They are wonderful! My only issue has been the strong herding desire which sometimes causes our Pyr to herd my toddler. However, it’s true that my toddler has also never been lost on our 5 acres 🤣
B Sullivan says
They are fantastic with children! Our grandson used to lie on the floor with Bailey and use her as a pillow. One caution, however, do not let children ride them (or any large dog) like a horse.
She will guard that child like her own. They are herding dogs and will do the same with children. I had 2 pyr’s and they would get on each side of my 3 year old niece and walk her past the stairs. They are amazing animals. Someone said it above – once you are loved by a pyr there is nothing else like it. My Dallas just passed on Tuesday 12 years old and my heart is shattered. Take the time to train, love, BRUSH and love her some more and she will reward you with protection and a sense of safety you have never felt before.
Despite all that facts, I still want to have a great pyrenees!
Stubborn as a mule but I wouldn’t trade him for the world. Most affectionate dog I have ever owned. Never stops barking absolutely loves being brushed doesn’t dig. I am now making sweaters for children in Siberia!!!!! Buying stock in vacuum manufacturers lol
Pamela Partridge says
Hi, I have a Karakachan/Great Pyr cross. She is so smart and funny. She is 7 months old now. Has never chewed anything in the house. Just lucky i guess. She loves her own toys. She likes to do laps around the kitchen Island with a toy in her mouth. Outside is another story. She loves to go to the top of the sawdust pile and dig her way to the bottom. Digs holes around the house’s foundation. Chases leaves, squirrels, anything that moves. Jumps and tries to get birds out of the sky. After visiting the neighbors a few times she now has a pasture of her own in between the female goat pasture and male goat pasture. She is an absolute delight. I have never laughed so hard. She is so fun and loving. Likes to lay on top of me on the couch, however, now that she is a 90lb 7 month old puppy it is getting a bit more difficult. Can’t wait to see how big she gets when full grown.
First time ever owning a Pyr. We have always had relatively small dogs that weight 20 lbs Max. I am also glad I knew nothing about the breed when we got him because I never would have taken him. Though still a puppy at 10 months & 85lbs, I love this big ole clumsy puppy to death and wouldn’t trade him for anything. Luckily he doesn’t bark that much; only when playing with our shitzu, which he thinks is one of his toys. He does shed so much. When I sweep every day, I can sweep up enough hair to make another Shitzu. he has to have his feet cleaned at the door & his feet washed every night to help keep the house clean. He is always digging. I sometimes thinks he is looking for China but he is a very loving dog with immense energy. He is very loyal & smart. Get one, you will fall in love with them.
I love ny pyr he is independent stubborn half deaf and most you say is true, Billy don’t bark so much but is very good at eating our stuff.
All problem is water compared to the affection and great personality in the dog the biggest problem I have whit Billy is that he think he is a knee dog, he just don’t realize how big he is. It takes hours days weeks and mounts to learn him basics in training but it’s worth it
I am looking into getting a Pyr as my first dog that is solely mine. I grew up with doodles and was looking to find one, but the pet store down the road has the most beautiful little girl Pyr I have ever seen (I really don’t like to look at dogs from pet stores, but she is just too cute). I wanted to do research before I decide so that I don’t dive in and end up with a dog that is too much. I live in a townhouse with three roommates and one husky/lab mix. He is incredibly excitable and wants a friend so bad! I am worried about barking and escaping since we live in an apartment near the main roads. Can somebody with experience tell me if it would be a good idea? I just want her to have the best home, and I don’t want her to be unhappy.
Helen Retan says
I have a female. She barks all day and night, and is always listening & watching. Sometimes it’s just the TV she hears. She also digs, hole after hole in the yard. She recently discovered the fire pit, where she likes to dig out ashes then lay in the center of it. UGH.
Yes… hair, hair everywhere! I had a kennel for her with a 6′ high fence since she’s a runner. Guess what? She somehow ate a hole through the fencing, squeezed out and went on a 7 hour run. She is very loyal, and likes to sleep on the floor next to my bed at night. She’s like having a toddler around but somehow worse. I still lover her though!
I love our Pyrenees!! I’m so glad we got her. Yes she barks at night. Yes she likes to roam. And yes she digs. But she has never once jumped her yard, is friendly to our livestock and kids, loves to be by my side for farm chores, and is the lovingest flood ever!! We did a special training program using an e collar and it has done wonders for our relationship. I highly recommend planning to pay a top quality trainer if you get one of these beautiful dogs!
I have 6 dogs 4 GP’s a chocolate lab and a border collie jack russell mix. My first was riley she has been an amazing dog and very loyal. I think you have to give up the idea of controlling them at all. I live in the country there are about 10 houses in my neighborhood and everyone has atleast 4 acres everyone knows everyone of my dogs. The kids love my dogs because they are so friendly. You can move around anywhere in our neighborhood and my dogs not hear you and go looking for the voice they dont recognize there is no where to hide from them at night and they will keep unknown people coyotes deer wolves and bobcats away from what the perceive as the entire area to protect. I would not give up any of my dogs much less my GP’s for barking.
Stephanie P says
We absolutely love our Pyr! His name is Kodah and he’s super smart and such a great dog! Does anyone else have issues with food aggression with thier Pyr? He’s a little over a year old (we’ve had him since he was 6 weeks, so cute!). He just gets VERY aggressive when you even look at him while he’s eating. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. 🙂
Have him sit, and wait for a few moments before allowing him to eat. This worked with my girl, after she growled at a family member while eating. Never had another issue.
Not sure if this will work for you or if you are monitoring this board but my daughter’s dog did the SAME THING. He would growl and keep looking until you left him alone and still growl ha. She paid quite a bit of money to find out what the problem was (the dog is probably about 4 so this has been a long time issue) and for all that money she found out that if you put his food bowl to where he can see you head on instead of having to look over his shoulder he was fine. No more growling and spending forever trying to get him to eat lol. Good luck.
I’ve had a goldendoodle for several years now & recently got a baby pyr. You aren’t kidding when you say they bark a lot. He is kenneled at night and he could bark for hours. He is extremely stubborn and demanding. We love him to pieces, but it is getting really difficult. He is 4 months old now, if anyone has any tips we’d really appreciate it.
I have had 5 over the years and currently have a female who is 8 and a huge male who is 5.
I would suggest going to regular training- whilst they are stubborn as they have too think for themselves in their livestock guarding roles they do accept routine.
My 2 know what to do without commands and are very good with kids don’t dig and don’t bark excessively. At 4 months he will be a large handful so training and routine is essential
ElizabeTh Hart says
I have a golden retriever/ Great Pyrenees mix and he’s the best dog ever. Yes he barks at night, yes he digs holes, no he doesn’t do tricks, but he is the most loving, gentle dog I have ever had!
I loved my Pyr! He’s gone now, but i remember him barking and annoying the neighbors…..my neighbors STILL don’t like me! I developed a great relationship with his groomer….who was just wonderful with him. She found out real quick that she couldn’t crate him after his bath, he destroyed several large crates as he wouldn’t tolerate being confined, so he would just run around the salon until I picked him up! He got along well with all other dogs AND my kitties! The worst (and best) thing i can say about him: He was smarted than me, and more determined……and I’m a veterinarian!
Carol vultaggio says
I love my big goofball. Yes he is stubborn ,sheds,drools and barks if the wind changes lol. The only thing I wish I could change is he is aggressive when it comes to his food. We have worked on that and he will let me and me only to move his dish. My problem Is II also have a pom that has a appetite like a lg dog. So when I seen there was a food problem I simply feed them separate. Thought my problem was solved,nope they had a scuffle over bird food that fell on the floor! Seriously bird food. I’m at a lost to fix this problem.
I’m getting a year old rescue pyrador (so the vet says Pyrenees/lab mix). I’m so excited. My daughter has her now and I get her in about a week. She does not bark overly much, but is super handsy. She is not as furry as a GP but has a GP tail and a lab or baby seal face! Incredibly loving and good with other dogs.
My worries are that she will run away. We have a good fence but also have a 60 acre farm. We would like for her to be able to be loose on the farm with the horses and cows when we are there without running away. Any suggestions on how to train?
I know she is a runner because she was found running on a highway and she has tried to run out of my daughters yard through the gate. I believe that she escaped from her original owners however, she had no collar, was not chipped and no one claimed her when we put notices in the lost and found. So at this point, after several months, we are taking her. We just don’t want to suffer the same fate and lose her.
Hi Jane. Is your sixty acres fenced? We have 32 acres fenced and cross fenced with electric. One of our dogs was getting out by squeezing under the gate. She did this twice when someone was riding a bike and she started chasing the bike. One time the biker turned around and rode back so I could catch her which was a relief. When they get excited they don’t listen (mostly don’t listen even when not excited unless food involved). Cars drive fast on our public road. If you don’t have a fence I don’t know how you will contain a runner. I don’t know if it would even help if you walked your boundaries with her. So far (four years) the dogs have not gone past the fence (digging or otherwise). I wish you luck!
Andrea Shoemaker says
I just adopted a Pyrenees a month agp and am having none of the issues being described here. Except the vacuuming. He doesn’t bark at night at all. I live in a condo. so no digging or escaping. He is extremely well behaved , and always comes when called. Plus he never has potty accidents.
Meg p says
I have just adopted a 5 year old pyr/lab mix and like yours has been super well behaved for the first week. Wondering if this changed as your settled in?
I love mine so much- she is such a sweet wonderful dog. She was a stray, which seems like part of their m.o. I can tell someone loved this baby! Seems like GPS collar is in order!
I just had to comment on the GP after reading all your comments! I just lost my GP a few months ago & my heart aches! He filled a huge hole in my heart left by my Leonberger that passed over the rainbow bridge 3 months before. His name was Gus but we thought he needed a BIG name because he was so BIG! So we renamed him – Sir Gus A Ruffsalot! I know I don’t have to tell you where he got his name! He was a re-homer off Craigslist at 2 1/2 years old. When I got him on New Years Eve 2015-2016, he weighed in at 148 #! He topped out at 180#! He was a Great guard dog! A bit aggressive at first. The Vet said he needed to be socialized! (What did that mean? I needed to take him to more dances! LOL!) I had a 1/2 acre of land with a 4ft chain link fence. His previous owner said I didn’t have to worry about him jumping the fence & he never did! GP’s are night owls & I was a night shift worker! Their breed instinctively sleeps all day and typically stays up all night & watches over the sheep, protecting them from the wolves! I got him 3 plastic lamb planters to watch over, but he was more interested in dragging the plastic Swan planter filled with sand around the yard & tossing his water bowl around! LOL! He chased the squirrels & the bunnies around the yard for a while, until he figured out that they were faster than he was! He wasn’t interested in dog toys of any kind or chasing after a stick! You threw it, you go fetch it! We had to get a rubber coated wire leash for him to be out front, because that dog could hog tie himself quicker than I could say his name, then get mad & chew thru the rope & RUN! He was faster than we were & if he ran, I would have to grab the keys to the truck in order to get him! We found out that if we quit chasing him, he would come back on his own! He never really dug holes in my yard, he just rearranged the dirt or mulch! If it was BLACK, he was in it! When I got him, his hind legs were hugely matted! I was told that he didn’t like to be brushed, but I sat down with him for a few days & gently brushed & cut the mats out of his hair. He loved to be brushed after that, but don’t get to close to his butt! If there were an mats on him, I would just cut them out! He had so much hair, no one noticed! We would take him to a dog salon where you could bathe him yourself. It was perfect! When we went there, it would take two of us at least two hours to bathe him and brush and dry him! He was such a Fluff Ball! When his feet were muddy, I would put him in the garage & I swear he had bleach in his saliva! Give him a few hours & his feet were as white as they could be! He hated having his toenails done! He snapped at the girl at Pet Smart & they called & told me to come get him! Banned from Pet Smart! He didn’t care & when your dog sits down & refuses to go into the Dog Grooming Shop, don’t make him! There’s a reason! Just leave, he knows something you don’t! I made Gus go in to get a bath & those two women running the show, had him so stressed out when I went to get him & then charged me over a hundred dollars! That’s when we started doing it ourselves! Much happier & he never refused to go in! At first he was food aggressive, but I put him in his place from the beginning, as I had too! He was bigger & faster than I was! Don’t leave your food sitting any where close! He chewed the plastic lid off of a container with barbecued beef in it & he lifted a lid off of a box and ate an entire roll of oreo cookies! When I first got him, I saw him out in the back yard eating something, but I didn’t give him anything to eat! I went out there to see what he was eating, the Grill Brush! OMG! You would think he would eat anything! Wrong! The Vet said he had to lose some weight! OK! aid he could have carrots & green beans. I gave him a carrot, he took it outside, laid it on the ground & it stayed there! The green beans, What? What is this? He looked at me like I was crazy, took that foot, folded it in & around the other side of that plate & pushed it away with his nose! He didn’t really drool much, but he was disgusting to eat with! Tried to put him in the garage when he ate, but he wasn’t going to have it! He wanted to eat with us! I ended up eating every meal standing up, because he was right at table height & when he was done he would come over & breath on my food! I used disposable water bowls & food bowls! He went every where with me, except when it was too hot out. He loved the snow & about 130 in the morning it was touch football time! He was a Barker, hence his name, Ruffsalot! Selective hearing, OMG! He would hide behind the pool & ignore me, like I wasn’t even there! When I would go out to get him, he would run to the back forty & make me chase him! I have a male friend that would come over & let him out at night & stay with him when I was working & all he had to say was “Gus come on, get in here” & he was up & moving! HE WAS MY DOG! He never chewed anything in the house, EXCEPT, when I first got him, he nibbled my shoe strings in half on both of my work shoes & he ate a giant chocolate chip cookie one Christmas Eve! He did shed, a ton, but I was used to it from the previous dog I had! I could vacuum 3-4 times a day, not to mention the hair in my truck! He took up 3/4 of the back floorboard! When I took him to the duck pond for walks, he would make it about 3/4 of the way around & then he was DONE! Have you ever tried to get a 180# dog to get up or do anything for that matter? If he wanted attention, which was all the time! He would come up beside you & put his head under your arm & flip it up, until you petted him, then Don’t STOP! EVER! He had full access to the house, so you never knew where you would find him! He was so sensitive! If you raised your voice he would get up & run to the back of the house, thinking you were yelling at him for something! But we weren’t! He hated to see other dogs going for a walk! He would start barking, standing up, Tail up & practically taking down the Oak tree in the front, but on Halloween he would lay in the driveway with his costume on & let everyone come up to get candy without a peep! One year we saw some people coming up the driveway & we waited at door, but no one came! I walked around the corner only to see one of the neighbors & her two kids taking pictures with GUS! Arms around the dog & he was standing there, all smiles! I LOVED Sir Gus A Ruffsalot & so did everyone who met him! I miss him everyday! This was just a small bit of the Joy he brought into my life & Thank You for letting me share his Life with You! I think it helped me to talk about him! Thank You!
Best dog I have ever owned. I LOVE MY GOLDEN PYRENEES. Listens very well, takes care of the family, is a gentle giant and soooo loving. I would recommend a Pyrenees to anyone. I can’t say enough good stuff about my boy Loyue. He is an absolutely amazing dog.
Mary Ann says
Yes they are barkers and stubborn and hairy. However, I wouldn’t trade my buddy Sam for all the money in the world. He is a loyal companion who only wants to protect and love me. Prys are also absolutely beautiful white fluffs. I absolutely love the breed. But if you are not able to put up with their ways, do them a big favor and find a different breed that will work for your family.
Interesting article, we had two, a brother and sister, we lived on a farm so had enough room for them, I kept them on zip lines when outside but they had access to house and would stay in the house at time but were comfortable in the kennel. We have more funny stories than issues, they do roam and once we had a yard sale and our neighbors abut 1/4 mile up the road in a trailer, and not a double wide, the lady told me that Molly and Moses come visiting them and their children and they let them in the house, Molly was a average sized GP, eventually when older did get up to about 130, Moses one the other hand was a large GP and was well over 150 his last year. Anyway, we just loved them and they repaid us with much loyalty especially protecting our grandchildren when they came for a stay. Not sure if it was the 6 reasons, maybe missed it but you have to careful with their ears and keep them clean. Moses lived to I think 10 or 11, and Molly to about 12. Miss them every day, and in closing in their later year when we relocated to a rural six acre residence they adapted well and would stay near, MOST of the time that is, but still had to be watched.
I have a 7-1/2 yes old Male, Badger markings around his ears. He draws huge amounts of attention wherever I take him. He is a wonderfully behaved dog. Full run of the house when we go to eat, etc.
Fearless, Loyal, knows how big he is (142.4) lbs and appears thin. Never as knocked a little one down. Extremely gentle with small children.
Lot is 1-1/2 acres, 6′ foot chain link and has never tried to escape. Guards us and our property. Strangers are not easily accepted.
I love this dog. Walk 3-4 miles each morning.
Rock Larsen says
I have been very lucky over the past 30 years with my Pyrenees all of which I got as 7 week old puppies. All have been pure white. Mine have always been indoor dogs that I took for long walks at least three times a day in the city, so digging and barking has never been a problem. I also have border collies so they have indoor companions when I’m not home. They have all been sweet natured and love attention. Heidi lived to be 11, Eva made it to 12 and 1/2, and my present Pyr Francesca (Franny) is only 5, so I hope to have her for several more years. They’ve been easy to train with patience, I wouldn’t recommend a Pyr for someone who is lazy about walks or wants a lap dog,
I do like this breed of dog. They are very different from a lab or setter. They are loving and enjoy being made over. However, they have their own mind. If they don’t want to “load up” they won’t load up and go off walking around the pasture..fast! I always tell him he’s not funny as I’m trying to catch him and he finally stops Big joke for him. The first three years they (two sisters now 4 and one male 3) chewed every leather glove that was left out, dug holes everywhere in the lawn and flower beds. One sister sleeps inside in a crate. She has never had an accident and was not trained for a crate when she was little. She waits at the door to come in at night. The other sister is allowed to roam the property without any problems. She will not stay in a kennel…digs out just like her sister. They stay within our fenced 32 acres, but if the gate is left open they would be gone. They chase cars and people along the fence line. They stop at the end. It doesn’t help that we have a border collie that enjoys doing this as well. They seem to know their territory. I do have a problem with our male attacking our sheep. He won’t stop so he is always penned when not under supervision. It is so odd that a guard dog is attacking sheep. We even have a muzzle we put on him when we take him out in the field for his run. He goes after the lambs sniffing them it seems, but without that muzzle he could hurt them in just a second. Not much of a life for him, but he is a sweet dog otherwise and gets along with cats and the other dogs. We’ve had him since he was 8 weeks old and he is now three. Believe me, we have given him second chances to correct his behavior at the loss of sheep and it’s impossible to allow him to roam. Oh, and yes they do bark consistently. Sometimes I wonder what the heck and then here comes someone walking out on the road that the dog had heard a mile away. It is generally quiet out away from neighborhoods so barking isn’t a problem unless they hear something out on the road.
Mary Hamilton says
I have a Great Pyr but he is great at doing tricks cuz we did it often.