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  1. #1
    Young Dawg (Member)

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    Smile 1st Time Pry Owner

    I am adopting my first pry found in a local animal shelter. Thankfully he appears to have been well socialized and raised to be a people pry as he walks well on leash, sits to be rubbed, etc. as opposed to a herd guardian that bonded with livestock rather than people. While I've always had large dogs, they've been goldens, shepherds, and mutts; breeds that want to please their person. For this adventure I'm reading all I can to prepare for this transition to pyr-dom. I have an older golden that will hopefully help train the (estimated) 8-12 month old pup that his job is to watch over me while I'm working in the yard or at the barn with horses. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Jewel's Avatar

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    Is your property securely fenced to keep your pyr in? It can take a while for a pyr to bond with its new family. If your property is securely fenced, I would take the time to get to know your pyr. Learn what interests / motivates him. Teach him the rules and boundaries in a consistent, calm and confident manner. Reward him well for good behavior. Redirect rather than punish undesirable behavior. In order to bond with a pyr, you need to earn its respect. Sounds kinda crazy but it really is how it works.

  3. #3
    Young Dawg (Member)

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    We have an area with a four foot fence where I will be with him to play while he gets to know my older golden and a smaller fenced area with five and six foot chain link fence that we are covering just in case he's a climber. Otherwise he'll be on leash around the yard and barn or inside with me. I have a crate and will see if he's been trained to enter. We also have a tiled sunroom we use as a dog room when we go out. Some of the rescues I've had have been so abused, if I said 'no' too sharply they would shake and break my heart. This will be a challenge but I've found that building trust is the fun part and once they adopt me as their person, we go slow and enjoy the training. I look forward to learning from others through this forum. A pyr rescue group is having a picnic in April and I hope to meet others leaving nearby.

  4. #4
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Rena450's Avatar

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    I've had 3 Goldens prior to adopting my Pyr, Lyric. She was 9 months old when I got her and she was raised on a farm but well socialized with people. I've had her for 9 months now (she is 1 1/2 yrs old) and it took about 6 months for us to bond - and it is a bond different from the ones I had with my Goldens - hard to explain. Lyric has my heart that's for sure.

    Jewel is correct - I agree with everything she said when it comes to getting to know your Pyr. Setting the rules and boundaries part is important.

    My greatest challenge was getting Lyric to let me know she had to go outside to go potty, that took a while, but, no problem now. Also, if she was outside in the fenced backyard, she would never come to me or even look at me if I called her from the doorwall. She is now starting to do that most of the time - she doesn't run to me immediately like my Golden did - but, on her own time ... when she gets around to it, she gets a treat and I make a huge deal out of it. Otherwise, I get the leash and put it on her -( she never runs away from me) - and I bring her in that way - she never refuses or pulls away. Now, if she doesn't see me checking on her in the backyard, she come up on the deck and look for me in the house.

    She loves people, good with other dogs, sits to be petted, lets me take things from her mouth that she shouldn't have and hasn't destroyed anything, except for one of my slippers a few months back.

    This is a great forum - everyone here has a wealth of knowledge and good advice/suggestions. I'm glad I found it ......

  5. #5
    Young Dawg (Member)

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    Thank you for your reply and encouragement.

    I was supposed to pick up Mr Darcy from the animal shelter last Tuesday after getting neutered on Monday but he had a resp issue so he'll be on meds for two weeks then try again. I visited him Monday and he was going much better so we walked outside for a couple of hours. He does well on a leash at "heel" and loose on an extending leash. When he got to the end of the leash I would stop and wait for him to look at me and could call him back with loads of praise. I have no such expectations when I get him home, just hopes that with time and help from golden Jesse, he will know this is home and his job is to look after me.
    I've had five stray dogs in the last year (including a belgian malinois; folks still drop animals in the country and renters leave them behind) that I've had spayed or neutered and found homes. All were extremely skittish at first but adopted me as their person so I have hope knowing it will take more time due to breed characteristics.
    This forum and two pyr facebook pages have provided a lot of information and solutions to member issues so I'm acting like a sponge to absorb all I can from the experiences of others. Having horses I've learned the slower the training, the better the outcome and there is always more to learn. There's nothing like a 1,000+ pound prey animal, including fearful rescues, to teach humble respect and patience.

  6. #6
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Shaggys Mom's Avatar

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    Hello from Texas. I have a question--what is it with so many Pyr owners also having Goldens, or having had Goldens? We lost our last golden Sophie to hemangiosarcoma last Oct. 12 just 3 months shy of her 13th birthday. Had had 5 goldens before her.

    When our 13 year old golden died in 2014 I told my vet I was not going to get another dog. I lost my first dog in 1956 andhad lost so many English Setters, 2 Irish Setters and 5 golden retrievers and I could not go thru that one more time. He simply said "Sandra, your heart will tell you what to do." He had been my vet for about 25 years (this was his first hospital) and he KNOWS me to well. Honey died on Aut. 13 and on Aug. 31 we had our first Pyr, adopted a blind, 7 year old who had had such a miserable first 6 years--apparenetly crated or in very small cage the entire time as he was stunted, no muscle tone AT ALL, and been dumped on a college parking lot. Covered in poop, raging ear infection and staph skin infection. No idea how to be on a leash, knew no commands at all. His rescuer applied to foster him (she normall fosters Bassets) and had him for 15 months. She is a full time college prof, had a toddler, her own dogs and fosters, so not a lot of time to spend with Shaggy. She did teach him to be on leash, had regular vet care and worked hard to get his skin soft on his back legs and lower back, etc wo hair was growing back.

    She had him for 15 months but nobody was interested in adopted a dog that had been blind his entire life, chroinic ear infection, no muscles. Had been blind his entire life, eye slits were to small. But reading about him and seeing his picture, he tugged at our hearts and we chose him over healthy dogs. She brought him to us and when they walked into the house he reeked. Had had a bath the day before at vet, so was his ears.

    Long story short here, she is vegan and feeds her dogs vegan. Food made of just grains and fruits and veggies. He had been about 30 pounds underweright according to the vet record she gave me, and he had only put on 5 pounds in that 15 months. I put him on grain free food and also cooked a little turkey stew for him to mix with his supper. Dehydrated some chicken strips also. And made boiled sweet potato treats for him. He loved short walks--was gonna take time to build up his musles and he learned the aly of our yard in no time. We kept the back door open and have a fountain there on the covered patio by the door and he learned very fast the way in and out was by the sound of the fountain. He had total freedom (have a 6 foot fence back yard). He would patrol the yard, stand at the back fence wagging his tail as the dogs behind us barked. For some reason he didn't bark and at first we thought he had had the surgery to stop it. But eventually he did start to let out a single woof and once about 5 of them in a row. He LOVED for me to hand feed him his kibble and all I ever felt were those big soft feathery lips. He started wagging his tail so much we startee calling him Shaggy Waggy. And so very, very sadly we lost him just 3 1/2 weeks after we got him--hemangiosarcoma. Druying that short time he had gained almost 3 pounds. He died Sept. 23, 2014. To this day we still talk about him and wonder how beautiful he would be today with good food, exercise--oh, our vet cleared his ears up and he no longer backed away if you got near his ears. He would plop that big head in our laps for ear rubs. We can picture him with his fur much thicker and long on his tail, no more ribs and backbone poking out. Oh, sorry about getting off on Shaggy, but I just sometimes have to talk about this amazing dog who had been so mistreat almost his entire life, but was so gentle and at ease with us.

    Anway, the rescue said we could hae our money back or pick another dog and we chose Moose. He had been with his owners for 4 years but they were moving up north to do a Bed and Breakfast and knew that was no place for a Pyr. They hd adopted him from the rescue and rules--you turn them back in if you hae to give them up. However they did ask if they could foster him until he either found a home or they had to move. We were contacted two days after he had been turned back in, but was still with his owners. I talked to them, and we met them half way up to get him. He was 7 years old at the time. They asked me if I would e-mailo and let them know how he had made the 100 mile trip, I did and sent e-mails with picture of him at the beach, at Tractor Supply, at Lowes, in our yard, etc. THEN I got an e-mail asking if we would be willing to take their 11 yer old golden retriever, Sophie. They had had her since she was 5 weeks gold. Had arthritis in her hips and they didn't think those far north winters would be good forher. Yep, we took that sweet little girl. Hubby called her Sweet Pea. Oh, and since I am queen of our house and do as I please, I "knighted Moose and he is now Sir Moose.

    Good luck with your Mr. Darcy (on of the lady's on the golden forum named her golden pup Mr. Darcy). And everyone is right--you do kneed a fence, 6 foot wooden fence is what we have. Sir Moose has dug big holes in the yard (like under the cedar tree and the really tall hibiscus bushes) but never tried to dig under the fence. He may be a bit rare becaue 99% of the time he comes when called no matter where in the yard he is. He enjoys being brush and raked, BUT if he even THINKS I am going near the water hose he tears into the house. And he does bark--he lets us know a leaf landed on the roof, that a dog 1/2 mile away is making nose trying to get into a trash can, etc. etc.
    Jerry and Moose

  7. #7
    Young Dawg (Member)

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    Even though we rescue animals for their well being, they adopt us as their family, often picking one as their person. My golden was tied to a tree for the first year of his life and could have pulled Santa's sleigh to my car. He was walking on a leash the first weekend with me but to this day will freak out if tied. Even with that lovable, playful personality goldens are known for, he has a protective side and has proven that several times, once growling with teeth shown and later taking down the same guy that was coming for me. When he had a heat stroke a few years back, there was no doubt $3500 was money well spent to save him. We've had three basset hounds from renters, one left behind, one taken from a crackhead, the other was in a small cage with no food and water in a garage in July-I fed him out of the owner's take out container then left the rest for the owner. If only I could do the same thing to idiots that they do to animals, be it tied to a tree without food or water or other horrors inflicted.
    To the Administrators of the forum: I apologize if I ranted too much. Please advise as needed.

  8. #8
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Christi's Avatar

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    One thing I would like to caution all of you on is that just because a youngish peer is friendly and sociable now, does not mean it will remain so. My boy has lived with me since he was 8 weeks old, was exposed to many different people on a regular basis and was extremely well behaved and friendly with all but just a few people he didn't seem to care for. Then around a year and a few months all that changed. People that he had encountered many times, sat for pets and took treats from he growled and barked at, he became suspicious of any stranger, and is now kept away from people outside my family and a very very few friends that he doesn't have an issue with. This is not to say it happens to every Pyr, but it is fairly common, and something you need to keep an eye out for.

  9. #9
    Young Dawg (Member)

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    That's all grades of scary. So, does anyone have any suggestions for moving forward with training, social encounters, anything? We live on a farm with horses, cows, dogs, barn cats and have visitors of all ages. I had a strange vehicle in the driveway and someone knocking on the front door. Everyone that knows us always comes to the back so when someone comes to the front door, I meet them with my now older golden and a gun (behind my back). We live in a safe area in the country but I don't take chances and wanted another large dog to be with me around the farm. I have read that pyrs are good at accepting folks that we welcome but are good at sensing possible threats as my golden has. Now I'm concerned that friends and family might be at risk and the thought of our adult children or grandchildren being bitten is terrifying. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  10. #10
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) SebastiansMom's Avatar

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    Sassy, the best advice I can give is to train and socialize him the way you would any puppy, but have a plan to manage and treat any behavioral issues that may come up as he reaches maturity.

    I would recommend bookmarking the following two webpages, and looking to find the behavior expert closest to you:

    http://www.animalbehaviorsociety.org...-directory.php

    http://www.dacvb.org/about/member-directory/

    Hopefully, you will never need to contact anyone on either of these lists, but if a problem should arise, these are the people you would want on your side.

    I adopted Sebastian when he was three months old, and worked very hard socializing him with people and dogs. We went to stores, restaurants with dog-friendly patios, he came to work with me every day, we went to dog parks, and he went to day care a few times per month. He is great with people of all shapes, sizes and ethnicities, but started having problems with other dogs as he reached mental maturity. His behavior started to change when he was 2 1/2, and by the time he was 3 1/2, he was unable to tolerate the sight of most dogs he didn't already know.
    Sebastian is on Facebook!
    www.facebook.com/SirSaintSebastian

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