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Great Pyrenees / Chien de Montagne des Pyrénées

Updated on August 25, 2015

The Great Pyrenees, Pyrenean Mountain Dog, Patou or "Chien de Montagnes des Pyrénées" is one of the FCI recognized French breeds.

First mentioned in the 15th century, he served as a guard in the castles of the Pyrenees. As a result, he provided his services as a herding and guard dog. Today he is also performed as a companion and family dog, the natural protective instinct should not remain unmentioned.


The Pyrenean Mountain Dog has a rich, dense and rather long hair dress. The undercoat is dense and fine hair, while the outer coat is thick and rather rough. The hair around the neck condense into a mane. At the tail and on the legs the coat is also longer. The coat color is pure white or pale yellow, with or without badges. These badges can be light gray, light yellow, tan or gray wolf and occur on the head (mask all possible), the ears and the tail.
His cousin on the Spanish side of the Pyrenees, the Pyrenean Mastiff (Pyrenean Mastiff), differs only insignificantly from him. France and Spain were unable to agree on a standard itself.
The breed is large and stocky to 80 cm, they should be rather long than tall. It has a muscular and straight back. The chest is broad and deep. The head is large and V-shaped with small, triangular and flat adjacent floppy ears. The eyes are dark brown and almond-shaped, the nose always from deep black color. The hairy, bushy tail strikes across the back a bow, and the paws are compact.


He is attentive, well-balanced, alert, brave, intelligent, relatively independently and hardened. He is a little Stubborn, barks little, but noisy, is tough and very agile for his size. The good-natured, friendly, kids love dog is vigilant and suspicious towards strangers and incorruptible in good and long education; he defends his family with all his might.

Within a herd, it is an outstanding guard. Its role is not to gather the sheep but to protect them. To do this, it is habituated very early to live with them, so it then considers the sheep family. If the dog detects an intruder, he barks and stands between the herd and what he sees as a threat. But we must be very careful in the mountains, because being very protective for the herd, he will not hesitate to bite walkers who pass nearby.

Within a family, it is an animal which is naturally a good guard, because of its protective nature. He has a great sense of family and knows to recognize the friends he has not seen in a while. Very gentle with children and rather placid, yet it is poorly adapted to city life. It is indeed a dog that needs space and whose powerful barking can be a source of annoyance to neighbors.

The breed needs plenty of exercise. Since they do not accept unconditionally any command obedience exercises are the worse choice for them. It is their desire to move most suited when one undertakes long walks with them and they can even run and play without a leash. These dogs may also be used for pulling small wagons or run freely on a large area, where they control their own territory.

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