View Full Version : Male or Female?

01-15-2010, 03:18 PM
What was y'all's (the Texas way of saying it) reason for getting a male or female pyr? Do you have a preference for one gender over the other?

Growing up we've always had male dogs because my father preferred male dogs. So, I preferred male dogs more so because we've never had a female dog. We ended up with Fifi because she needed a home and I thought that the independence of the pyr would be a good choice for a first dog for my hubsand. Gender didn't really play a big part in that decision. We hit a homerun with Fifi.

When we got our male it was very much an impulse adoption. There he was at Petsmart, he was so cute and I just wanted to hold him for a bit.... But had he been female, I don't think we would have gotten the pup because I had heard that female to female aggression could be really bad.

After Fifi passed away, we could have chosen to get a male dog because I know my male can get along with certain males. But male pyrs are just so BIG! Besides, we had a really good experience with Fifi as my first female dog. So, Bijou became part of the family :)

What about you???

01-15-2010, 03:42 PM
Interesting topic!
My fiance prefers female dogs and I prefer male dogs. Since I'm the primary caretaker, I guess my preference played a bigger role when we picked Kuma out.
I don't know what it is, but it seems natural to me that my furry best friend is the opposite gender, kinda like he balances me out.
I think once Steve either changes jobs or is promoted to a position where he's no longer on the road Monday -Friday and we can settle down, I'd like to add another dog to our family, a female companion for Kuma and to make Steve happy.

01-15-2010, 05:33 PM
My husband love Malamutes. In the malamute you only have one female period
So that is why we have males in our house. When I met my husband I had a female poodle. I had to keep them apart or she would kill it but my pug is a male no problem there. Have know female passed away in Nov. SO in our house it will be boys

nick's spirit
01-15-2010, 05:46 PM
Our first Pyr was a female, Spirit, didn't know anything about the breed, went to look at puppies and the females were left...we lived in Idaho at the time, 120 acres...thought we needed a large dog. Second Pyr we got was a male. I had called Pyr Rescue regarding some bad treatment of adult & puppy Pyr's. The person I was talking with was a "real" breeder and after several conversations found out that she had a litter of pups and when she sent us the photos of Nick we fell in love! Our current Pyr is a female, Holly, again just went to look at pups, she & her sister were left. I figured since we had Nick it was best, if we got another Pyr it should be a female. Asking my husband what he thought about all of our dogs, he says he prefers females. I really have no prference either way. I think it best to get the opposite gender of dog from the current dog you have and the most important...temperment...don't care if they are male or female, I just want one I can take with me where they will be welcomed and admired as polite companions.

01-15-2010, 06:01 PM
I'm not a great one to ask.... I got a female mix that picked me, we were actually looking for a dog for my ex (now) wife. And my rescue Cheval is a male. He needed us and I kinda liked the balance of having one of each. That was before I read that you should really split them up by gender, just lucky i guess. ANd if you buy it there's the old addage about male dogs are better gaurds of stuff, and females gaurd people more.

Trenary Ducks
01-15-2010, 06:39 PM
I asked for a female out of the litter because I heard that they ate less than a male. Furthermore, the breeder felt that the females were better at guarding.

01-15-2010, 07:45 PM
I've found that females of most breeds are more difficult to manage...and I have had both male and females...even at the same time. My female Shephard was a true bit**! and you might want to capitalize that! My male Shephard was a real pushover even though he was 40 pounds heavier. Something about the female personality.......and I say that with all due respect ladies!! Let's face it....the females are the stronger willed of all breeds, human and animal!! :D :D :D :D

01-16-2010, 08:51 AM
we've had several different combinations in our household at all times. We try to keep a balance in the pack dynamic when we adopt. We currently have one female and two males...the female has a stronger personality which balances out the two males, who are both pushovers. It's been reverse a few times in the past when we had two pushover females and a dominant male.

01-16-2010, 09:31 AM
Before Cider I had two male (fixed) Black Lab mix dogs. One at a time. They seemed to be more outgoing than their littermates. I chose males for no other particular reason.
We wanted our LGD to be male because of the size. Sometime between two to three years old, when he's a more mature LGD, we plan on getting Cider a female pup for him to train. I believe there will be less isues to deal with having a male and a female.
Cider has been altered and so will the female.

01-16-2010, 07:07 PM
:D I've decided I would like to move to Eugene Oregon and live with Queenie and Cider.....I need lots of space to roam around in and Queenie needs a companion :D ;)

01-16-2010, 11:44 PM
I got Monty 2 years ago and I didn't care about gender I just wanted the fawn Shar-Pei over his sister who was black and more out going. I have had some issues with Monty due to a bad trainer messing him up. So when I was looking for another dog I decided I wanted something with hair and a female because Monty does have issues. Plus I can put bows and such in a females hair which I do often to Missy. At first I was looking for something easy to train like an Australian Shepard and then I found Missy. I drove out 5 hours and picked her up and fell in love. She is so mellow compared to my male dog. They are night and day, kinda neither one will listen to me right away that is something they have in common. I guess I am partial to females because I can do so much to them grooming wise. Just like I like hair over no hair. The fluffier the better to me.

01-17-2010, 08:27 AM
:D Queenie and Cider would probably have some great times together. But Kate, I'm afraid you might go into shock at the climatic change from Florida to Oregon. We do get a little rain now and then.
And not many swimming beaches along this coast. Cold water and dangerous tides.
Space to roam you say? That we have. Here's a pic showing a piece of Cider's yard. The curving road in the upper right of the pic is Cider's property line.
And one along the creek bottom of Cider and the goats heading toward some oak trees for acorns. Notice the lichen on the alder and ash trees in the background. Yes, the climate here is a bit damp.
But if you're ever in the neighborhood be sure to look us up.

01-17-2010, 09:40 AM
I was born and raised in New England so I am familiar with cold and damp. We moved to FL just about 6 years ago and lately I have been having second thoughts about where I would truly like to live.....I do not like the summers here at all and I'm not getting any younger so I better make up my mind pretty fast! I did mention to my husband I would love to have some acreage somewhere with milking goats....sell the milk for goats cheese. We have a small "fainting goat" farm near me here in FL and she uses 5-6 GPs to keep watch over her goats. They do not look nearly as nice as Cider for being totally "outside" dogs! They actually look pretty pathetic.....no grooming, loaded with fleas, etc. My life in Florida has not been exactly what I had expected mainly because of the recent economy but we are holding on til things look a bit better before deciding to sell and relocate. Hubby has a decent job here as a truck driver for a large company which is more than what most of the people have down here right now. If/when there comes a time to move on, I'll be outta' here like I was shot out of a cannon!
Are your goats milking goats? I don't think I could ever do a "meat" thing.....only a by product type of situation for me....like eggs, milk, fertilizer etc. Cider sure looks like he enjoys that wide open space. I know Queenie would absolutely love to just roam around....unfortunately, she would probably roam right off the property!

01-17-2010, 11:11 AM
Kate, I hope that sometime in the near future, you and Queenie can relocate to a place you're truly happy with. My fiance lived in Florida for years, and wants us to move there- but this is the one thing I'm putting my foot down about. I grew up in Minnesota and spent my summers in China in 105 degree F heat waves. I don't do well with either temperature extreme- it makes me cranky to live outside my small range of preferred temperature.
I too, yearn for a larger property but unfortunately, it'll be a long time before that dream comes true. I'll be inheriting a wooded 80 acres in northern California, but it's just not the right time to build a home there like I want to. Plus they don't have a lot of type of work my fiance does. But I can bet that Kuma would love it there, able to dig and frolic to his heart's content.

01-17-2010, 12:51 PM
I currently live in California and I can deal with the weather we have here. What I really want is to move to Oregon or Nevada because, I really want snow and some acreage to play with. Where I am at in California we don't get snow. I mean I can drive two hours and bam there is snow but then I drive home and it is gone.

01-17-2010, 08:29 PM
We live in Northern CA. Our house is on 3 acres, our fenced in area isn't that big though ~ but I walk them 2 miles every morning. I have a 2000 acre property about an hour north of us, but haven't taken them up there yet. Maybe after we get through all this rain I'll take them up there and see what they think.

My father was a Marine Pilot, so I've moved all my life (just about every 3 years until I got married a year ago.....) but I have to say, I love Northern CA~ my dad's family is all here so that is nice... but I love the climate and the scenery.

01-17-2010, 09:28 PM
Ah, we are city folks. The 4 of us live in a 1000 sq. ft. bungalow that sits on a .17 acre lot (yes, the period comes before the numbers :p ).

Cider's home is beautiful. My kids would have fun running around there. But I dont' know that I'd fit in. My first thought about living in the country is always, gee, how long does it take just get to a grocery store??

Even though we live in the city, my kids get a 3 mile walk every weekday morning and we walk a totally different route everyday. On weekends we go 4 to 5 miles at the parks and trails. They also both take agility classes and we go to an agility trial once a month. We don't have the open space to run free, but we try to make up for it with lots of activities. :D

Tsunibear, absolutely love Monty's wrinkles!!

By the way, Cider lives in Willamette Valley, no? We are quite partial to Oregon pinot noirs. We hope one day to do a tour of the vineyards in Oregon and maybe we can drop by to see Cider?? :D

pyr haven
01-17-2010, 10:11 PM
hi based on postings here, i think most pyr owners do love/ dream of wide open space? like the marlboro man image but wit snow :) ;)

kate, i know wat u mean about goat 4 meat. Mine is exactly tat, but we use them in our program for the poor i.e. free stud services (we got a big mean macho black goat), and we give away the babies wit the promise never to kill but for breeding. It's the same wit our geese (not for stud sorry). our females somehow are very2 fertile and multiply like rabbits. (now if only our planned chicken will be same).

if ever any of u are in the "area", it'll be grand if u all happen to "drop by", my pyrs mud lee and kitty kat are always looking for new playmates, human or canine. Except tat of course, u'll need to fly 24hrs to get here.

jewel, being a city person, it's wonderful to have the basic luxuries in life out here! I mean real basic like clean water! Animal poop is a fact of life (my pyrs have an an affinity for goat poop and umm, will roll in cow dung), so is undressed livestock (seafood so fresh it's still alive when in my kitchen sink), muddy yellow sometimes gritty water for bath, and snakes! in california where my pups come from, coyotes (my pups' sire, my terrier X's sire were both killed by coyotes). tat said, i absolutely it it here. it's not too remote yet if must, modern amenities like shopping mall is 1-2hrs drive away.

on topic, either male or female is ok, but i do find males are more easy going (my females tend to be more dominant and male, pushover) but damn loyal. and yeah, the male sleeps a lot and the female guards more. Territorial, i think my male a liitle more than the female.

01-18-2010, 12:20 AM
We live in Northern CA. Our house is on 3 acres, our fenced in area isn't that big though ~ but I walk them 2 miles every morning. I have a 2000 acre property about an hour north of us, but haven't taken them up there yet. Maybe after we get through all this rain I'll take them up there and see what they think.

My father was a Marine Pilot, so I've moved all my life (just about every 3 years until I got married a year ago.....) but I have to say, I love Northern CA~ my dad's family is all here so that is nice... but I love the climate and the scenery.

See I live in the Central Valley it's pretty don't get me wrong, California is super pretty. I mean I am driving distance from everything and I live in a city but it's a big house. I want room to roam and have a horse eventually cause I miss having one. I am weird I would be happy staying here in California but I would have to go further up north or closer to the Grape Vines so I could have snow.

Jewel thanks he loves hearing how cute he is.

01-18-2010, 08:27 AM
Our goats are Boer's. Meat goats. Actually most of the does are a Boer/Nubian cross. Nubian being a dairy goat. Boer's are not known for their milk production so crossing with a dairy ensures the kids will have enough to eat.
We have one full blood Nubian doe to provide extra milk if needed. If not needed by kids will be used for cheese, yogurt, soaps and lotions.
This will be our third year of raising goats. Our first kidding season that most kids will be sold instead of kept for breeding stock.
80% of the world eats goat meat. Though it is just starting to catch on in this country. And as the ethnic population in the country grows so does the demand for goat meat.
The first full blood Boers were brought to this country in the early 90's. '93 I think. Fairly recently.
Something like 75% of goat meat consumed in the U.S. is imported from places like Australia and New Zealand. The demand for domestic goat meat is large.
We have plenty of invasive blackberry vines on our property we wished to get rid of. Goats love blackberry. Where some breeds of goat spend more time than others ruminating, chewing their cud, Boer cross goats spend a lot of time eating.
We also have a lot of other things going on around the farm and did not relish the idea of having to milk goats twice a day. A neccessity if going the dairy route.
We are not a vegetarian family. We like meat. Goat meat happens to be a healthy meat. Very lean. Has the protein of beef but the fat content of chicken.
This is a business. We try to ignore the fact they're cute. But I'd be lying if I said it was easy.
And Jewel, yes, Cider does live in the Willamette valley. Two vinyards/wineries are less than a half mile away. Six within about a twenty mile radius. Send me a message if you ever plan on visiting Oregon.
Sorry for the length of this post and the fact it had nothing to do with the original topic. When I get started talking about goats I have a hard time shutting up.

pyr haven
01-18-2010, 06:28 PM
This is a business. We try to ignore the fact they're cute. But I'd be lying if I said it was easy.
Sorry for the length of this post and the fact it had nothing to do with the original topic. When I get started talking about goats I have a hard time shutting up.

DPW i love anything goat as much as geese and pyrs. rather than hijack this thread can u pl refer to a good goat community website? we feel very much the same for our livestock, we do not get too close except for MEK! (he's the smallest and was very frail, and was sickly but displays a very soft gentle and friendly demeanour). the livestock tat leaves our property do come back in nice small packages, the villagers here felt to oblige to "repay" us. a kid goes for about USD50 and full grown USD250. mutton is the most expensive meat here, and around the region and consumed by all ethnic groups. imports are mainly from oz. consider tat ave mthly income for locals is about USD250...again sorry to all here, to divert

01-19-2010, 09:38 AM
Sorry Pyr Haven I don't visit any goat community web sites. I spend too much time at this one as it is. :)
Here's a link to a goat farm here in Oregon. This is the kind of place we're striving to be in a couple of more years.


01-19-2010, 09:47 AM
All this talk of farms and space makes me want to pack up and move this instant.
Our property is outside of Douglas City, does anyone else live close by?

01-19-2010, 10:03 AM
No, but I'm with you Milu....let's just pack it up and find some wide open space! Perhaps I should reconsider my feelings about goat farming....maybe I could do the "meat" thing.....as long as I could still have some Nubians for the milk! It's not like I will have to do the butchering, right?? I am assuming you send the goats off for that? I have actually done some web searches for acreage in North Carolina and Virginia to see what might be out there. I'm not sure I could move as far as the west coast but I could certainly move inland a bit as long as there is some body of water...like a lake, pond, river etc. nearby. I definitely would consider doing something to bring some income off the property like goat herding, boarding, etc but my husband would definitely want to have a job with benefits. That means I would have to stay on the smaller/managable side of any venture. Thanks for the info DPW.

01-19-2010, 11:54 AM
See I have only seen meat goats. I have a friend who is a 4-H leader and she is in charge of the dairy goat kids and her mom is in charge of the meat goat kids. Well on her ranch she only had meat goats and after the show and they sell some of them but the others they use for their purpose. I won't lie at first it upset me because I named one and then tried it not knowing who it was. Goat meat is actually quite yummy. Boer goats tend to be prettier then Nubian, odd how a meat goat is prettier then a diary goat.

01-20-2010, 09:19 AM
As they say Tsunibear, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. :)
We are partial to the Boers and Nubians because of the floppy ears. Other breeds have ears that stand up. Except for La Mancha's. A breed of dairy goat. THEY DON'T HAVE EARS!!! Scary looking if you ask me. But a lot of people love 'em.
I do not butcher our goats Kate. I haul them to a USDA certified meat packing plant. And we don't name the ones we know are destined for the freezer.
I would heartily recommend raising goats to any one interested. Either as a business or just for pets. Your Pyr's would love you for it as well.
Handled and prepared correctly goat meat is delicious. And like I said it is also a healthy, lean meat. And goat cheese? Mmmm. There are also fiber goats. You've probably heard of Angora's. That could be another source of income for those interested.
I know this is a web site for Great Pyrenees but since Pyr's and goats go together so well and to provide some info for anyone interested I'm including two links to very good and informative goat sites. The first is weighted toward the dairy goat and the second on meat goats. But not Boers. There are Boer sites out there but if I'm looking for info I look at these two sites first.


01-20-2010, 10:11 AM
Oh man, DPW- I just googled La Macha goats to see what they looked like, and I'll admit it freaked me out a little too. From the side, they look like... horse/dinosaurs.
How many goats would you recommend keeping as pets? I think I'll suggest it to my father to keep a few (he's been dreaming about retiring and moving down to his property in Arkansas) and see how Kuma gets along with them- he was raised on a small farm with them and his father and grandmother were LSGs.

01-20-2010, 01:11 PM
Just make sure he gets at least two. A goat alone is a very sad goat. And really, really, really good fences.
Visit a goat farm in your area. Goat people love talking about goats. Visit during kidding season and you'll be hooked. Guaranteed.

01-20-2010, 05:37 PM
I just like the two colors on the Boer's more then the Nubian's weird I know. I got to bottle feed a kid once it was so amazing. Whenever I have room for some goats I will have some. Bottle feeding the kid was something I will never forget and I have bottle fed a lot of animals like calves and such not as cool as the kid. Also the La Mancha goat is interesting.

01-20-2010, 08:26 PM
I'm new here and we are getting our 2 pyr puppies in about 4 weeks. We also raise Goats (Nubian's) for the milk with a few meat/milk mixed in.

I don't see a "Hi - I'm new here" thread, so I thought that since I had goats, I'd introduce myself here and then try and cruse around looking for "raising guardian dogs with goats" advice.


01-20-2010, 08:32 PM
Tell us more about yourself! Where are you getting the pups from? Did you pick out which ones already?

01-20-2010, 09:50 PM
HA! This thread started out about gender of dogs, and now we are at milk or meat goats :p Love it!! Welcome Ilgoats!!

01-20-2010, 09:51 PM
Yeah, I was just thinking that we're awful about staying on topic :)

pyr haven
01-21-2010, 02:25 AM
absolutely my last post on goat, i have to thank dpw for the replies, truly u sound like u have a great farm and a happy handsome pyr! for those interested in pet goat, there is a small floppy ear variety, very easy to care for (green garbage disposer), nice personality (and equally charming poop). i do not know the name of tat type goat, but my kids just fell in love wit it. it was very2 expensive tho

01-21-2010, 07:04 AM
Well - since no one kicked me off for bing OT :D : I have a herd currently of 35 Nubians, 18 of which are goat kids born in a 7 day period. Some will be replacement does, some as 4H sales, and 1 buckling retained. The rest will go to freezer camp as ground or summer sausage.

We also have 1 Belted Galloway freemartin (going to slaughter Feb), 1 red angus, 2 highland cows (hopefully bred) and their last year spring heifer calves.

We have gone to see the puppies, their living environment,their parents, parents working environment, talked to the breeders vet (who happens to be our vet as well - small world), and committed to 1 male/1 female. They will be altered based on the advice of the vet.

I did freak out when the breeder told me each grown pyr ate 2x44# bags of food a week! Then after a little research and further conversation found out she meant per month.

We homeschool 3 kids, live on about 12 acres an hour out of St. Louis, make about 80% of our own food (I am horrible at bread), and sometimes I wake up and say "How did I get here from L.A.?" If it concerns anything from cheese to crafting - we prob. do it.

Enough about me - the puppies have not received names yet because we know they will be here a long time and want to make sure we choose the right ones. Each child has their own affinity (one wants to be a large animal dermatologist and so spends hours on fur/skin care). She and I will be responsible for maintaining their coats.

We are excited and a little apprehensive as we want to do this right.

I'll look around more here before asking any more questions as I'm gonna guess that most of my beginner questions have been addressed.

Thank you for the warm welcome.

(to see pictures of goats/area and future pictures of puppies)

01-21-2010, 09:00 AM
Welcome ILGoats.

If you do not know about it yet a great book on the subject is "Livestock Protection Dogs. Selection, Care and Training." I learned a lot from that one book.
One issue you may face with raising two pups is the possibility of them spending more time playing with each other rather than bonding with the livestock.
If possible introduce the pups to goats that are slightly bigger than they are. This way the pups learn that goats are not toys to play with. The pups will grow faster than the goats so you must keep replacing younger goats with older ones.
Prepare for a change in behavior at about 6 or 7 months or so. At this age it's possible for the pups to seemingly forget everything they have learned. Instinctually or from you.
Ours was fantastic with the goats up to the time he became larger than all of them. He then became bored with just sitting around watching the goats eat. He wanted to play. And his play could become rough. Or he would wander off in search of fun. We still keep a closer eye on him than when he was young.
If a pup has no older dog to teach him/her acceptable behavior around livestock it can take until the dog reaches 3 years old before they mature enough to be trusted to be left alone with livestock for long periods of time without supervision. From what I've learned around 2 years of age is more common with 3 years being the time to give up on the dog as a competant LGD.
I'll take the blame for hijacking this thread. No more goat talk from me. Unless directly related to Pyr's. :D

01-21-2010, 12:16 PM
Based on what I have seen around here, I ordered the book Monday.

Is there a thread under "Training" that shows a way to introduce pups to livestock? I'll post my plan there (which may be completely wrong, but that's okay because I'd rather ask then mess up big time).

01-21-2010, 01:30 PM
There is also a thread I think you should read called 'Frustrated by my escape artists' under the pyr behavior section that mentions the problem that DPW brought up- that is, two younger pyrs who have more fun playing with each other and running off than they do guarding livestock.

01-22-2010, 07:24 AM
I remember that post I think....the owners had to ultimately relocate one of the Pyrs because it was leading the other one astray or something along those lines. I suppose the attitudes could be a bit different about dog ownership when one has a working Pyr....similar to that of a canine officer in law enforcement. The dog needs to be reliable when it comes to the job....if not then it is replaced or relinqhished to a different home/situation. I understand the concept behind this but would have a hard time personally giving up a dog once I bonded with it. How does one even do foster care? I'd end up with a house full of dogs! I'm just a sucker for animals I guess....