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  1. #1
    Puppy (New Member) riley's Avatar

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    Default Any of this sound familiar?

    Our 1.5 year old Great Pyr mix, Mason, shows some interesting behavior and I'm wondering if any of it is common among the breed.

    He does the Pyr paw a lot, frequently doesn't understand why he should listen to a command, and likes to sleep alone at night. I figure those are the breed (?) But he also:

    Stands on his hind legs. He does it as a form of greeting when we get home, and also whenever he sees a small dog (he LOVES playing with small dogs). When we encounter a small dog on the leash and he sees them from a distance, he will stand on his hind legs and sometimes does what we call "backflips"...where he essentially falls backwards! He always catches himself, but it's pretty funny looking and I've never seen another dog do it before. It's surprising because otherwise he is SO CALM and mellow. He just really loves small dogs and something changes in him.

    Sleeps a lot. Is this one normal? I've never timed it, but sometimes it feels like he'd sleep for 20 hours a day if he could. The guy loves his bed.

    If he has a toy in his mouth he will walk around with his chin tucked down, and look up at you. It's so cute.

    He communicates physically instead of vocally. He gives the door a paw when he needs to go out, and he play-mouths and play-paws a LOT. We're trying hard to get him to stop doing this but he's such a physical dog. He's not a barker at all, and will whine only if he REALLY needs something, but otherwise he uses his body to communicate. Is this Pyr or not?

    We aren't positive what he is mixed with, but we suspect St. Bernard and possibly a little Australian Shepherd.

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

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    Quote Originally Posted by riley View Post
    He does the Pyr paw a lot, frequently doesn't understand why he should listen to a command,
    those are more pyr

    The rest of the stuff sound more like an individual thing.

    To me he doesn't look like he has saint in him. He doesn't have the mass of a saint and his head does not have that mastiff look. The mastiff head is quite distinct and different from a pyr head. It is more likely that he has some aussie in him.

    My Bro was part aussie we think and he definitely was not built like a pyr. He was a lot more refined and streamlined.

  3. #3
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) SebastiansMom's Avatar

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    Mason's markings look like those of a tricolor hound to me - maybe a treeing walker coonhound? I know very little about hounds, in general, but maybe that's where he gets his standing behavior?

    Sebastian is a Saint/Pyr/Anatolian mix. He shares Mason's love of sleep, extensive use of the Pyr paw, selective listening skills, and physical communication style. However, he is also a very vocal communicator, as well, and only stands on his hind legs when he wants to give me "special" hugs (yep, he's neutered, and has been since he was three months old - he just loves hugging).

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    This is Sebastian at around 1.5 years old. He's got that blocky Mastiff head. He does not have the mass of a Full Saint. He is 32" tall at the shoulder, but in this picture, he was hovering right under 100lb. His full coat also had not grown in at that point, making him look even thinner.

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    This is Sebastian last year, when he was four. He is still nowhere near the size of a Saint, weighing 110lb. His coat makes him look a lot bigger than that.
    Sebastian is on Facebook!
    www.facebook.com/SirSaintSebastian

  4. #4
    Puppy (New Member) riley's Avatar

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    This is very interesting...I'd love to hear what anyone else thinks he is mixed with. The reason we've thought Saint is because of his body markings, and honestly a few people have remarked "he looks like a Saint Bernard" out of the blue after first meeting him. He also has a strange coat color on his body markings - the large brown patches are a reverse ombré, where the hair is lighter brown at the base of the hair and almost black when it reaches the tips. For some reason this reminded me of a Saint? Not sure. I definitely agree about his head though. Here are a few more pics, I'll try to include some full body.


    You can see the ombré I'm talking about near the hand in one pic (and he looks extra fluffy because he'd just had a bath)
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  5. #5
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) SebastiansMom's Avatar

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    Whatever breeds are in his mix, he is a gorgeous boy!

    I see hound in your Avatar pic, but no hound in the four most recent pics. Of those four, I can maybe see a tiny bit of Saint in the second photo, but not at all in the other three. That doesn't mean that it's not there, though. It would be interesting to see what a DNA test had to say. From what I understand, they aren't 100% reliable, but...

    I do think that Australian Shepherd is a good guess. His coloring seems to be more consistent with Aussie than with Saint. From the pictures, it looks like Mason's coat has a combination of warm and cool tones. Of the Saints I have seen, their markings have all been warm-toned. Also, with half-masked Saints, the color of the eyepatch is usually either the same color as or darker than the color at the tops of the ears. The black in a Saint's mask is important, as it helped him see on sunny days with snow on the ground by cutting down on the glare.

    My Chester is an "anybody's guess" dog. His vet records list him as a retriever mix. My official guess is predominately lab/pit mix. His vet thinks he's part Shar Pei, which is believable. His behaviorist thinks that he has some Rottweiler. Given the fact that he's only about 17" tall and 60ish pounds, I'm not so sure.

    With Sebastian, we have a better idea. His rescue received some information about his parents when he and his littermates were surrendered. Still, I have had people claim that he was a full Anatolian, that he was an Akita, and my favorite, that he was a Great Dane. The people who know Pyrs tend to see the Pyr in him, and everyone else just calls him Beethoven.
    Sebastian is on Facebook!
    www.facebook.com/SirSaintSebastian

  6. #6
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) nick's spirit's Avatar

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    Riley.....agree the paw is a Pyr trait as you have found out

    Rudy the Pyr loves to stand up & greet, but we discourage that for a number of reasons

    Now, Angel the Aussie....loves to come up to you, wiggle her little butt off, then when you reach down to pet her...she falls over....and it sounds like exactly what you are describing with Mason...hard to tell unless ones actually sees it.

    As I look at Mason's ears....I personally see Aussie....

    here's a few photos of Angel

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  7. #7
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Antonia's Avatar

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    I had a Pyr x Aussie girl and could see that possibility of a mix in your boy. She was built on finer lines than my other Pyr mixes and had more waviness in her coat. She also had patches of color but mom was Blue Merle and my girl ended up with predominantly pale tan/white coat with colored trim. Her coat changed color many times as she matured. She did have color patches that were lighter towards her skin and darker on the ends. The man I got her from had Pyr X Aussie pups from a tri-color dam and the looked very similar to your boy except their tails had been docked... How big is your boy? My Pyr x Aussie girl matured around 86lbs. Probably a bit chubbier than I would have kept her. Generally, you'd think that both Anatolian and St. Bernard would increase mature weight rather than reducing it. My Pyr x Anatolian boy matured at 155lbs... My Pyr x Aussie girl was very mouth-oriented from puppyhood and also was big on getting up on her hind legs and prancing around. First photo shows her at about a year old. Second photo is her at about 3 years.
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  8. #8
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) snow0160's Avatar

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    At first glance, I thought Aussie as well. I have worked with aussie rescues a long time ago and when they are mixed with other breeds it is hard to tell they are aussies. We had a puppy that someone thought was a landseer newfoundland once but it was just a giant australian shepard. I could understand why you thought St. Bernard because you also see similar patches on them too. I would say the dog's gait is the biggest giveaway. The dog that everyone thought was a landseer was very agile like an aussie. Newfies never move like that. I hope this helps? Enjoy your dog, he is beatutiful and very cute profile photo btw.

  9. #9
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Tsunibear's Avatar

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    I think he is part hunting dog and not herding. My opinion would be like an English Springer Spaniel with a Pyr. His feathering is rather thin and his coat has a lovely wave to it which is common in hunting dogs. As he matures that could change though. It's hard to tell to be honest.

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

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    This was my Bro, who was half pyr, half retriever/aussie. He was all white but a couple of his siblings were not. Two of them had golden patches on them.




    I can see Mason might have hound in him. His coloring is very striking. Wonder if mixing merle with pyr could do that. Aussies have merles and then there is the catahoula. Pyrs can have patches of color on them, and so the patches of color could be from the pyr and the color itself could be from the other breed(s) in him.

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