Spotlight on...Great Pyranees

Matchmaker, Matchmaker

Size:  Large

Grooming needs:  Moderate (1 hour/week)

Exercise:  Long walks daily

Environment:  Inside with access to large fenced area

Temperament:  Calm, Intelligent

Life Expectancy:  10-12 years

Interesting fact:  Great Pyrenees are centuries-old guard dogs believed to have protected flocks of sheep. In medieval France, they served as fortress guards and were also kept in groups by chateau owners.

Appearance:  This is a large, majestic looking dog with a stunning, thick white coat.  They have brown, almond-shaped eyes, a black nose and drop (floppy) ears.  They range 85-100 lbs, and are slightly longer than they are tall.  Their fluffy, weather-resistant coat gives the impression they have a heavier bone structure than they do.  They are powerful and agile.  They uniquely have double dew claws on their hind legs.

Personality:  The Great Pyrenees or “Pyrs” are devoted to their people but wary of strangers.  They are self-reliant and intelligent, and can be seen as stubborn.  This willfulness is important for a working dog that traditionally spent significant time alone with his flock and needed the ability to make decisions based on his own experience.

Pyrenees are calm, affectionate and gentle with family members.  They enjoy a consistent and predictable life with quiet time to rest.

Common Health Problems:  Hip Dysplasia, Luxating Patella and Congenital Heart Disease are concerns, but overall this is a hardy breed.

Best Match:  Pyrs can adapt to many types of environments, but they do take up a lot of space.  They do not do well in hot weather and enjoy the cold and snow.  The Pyr’s natural guarding instinct will extend to the world if given the chance.  Outdoors they need to be on leash or in fenced areas.

Though their grooming needs are reasonable, about an hour’s weekly brushing, they shed heavily year round.  Their best match fur-parents will be okay with not wearing black!  This loving breed makes a wonderful pet for the right guardians.

Featured Adoptable:  Bigalow is a very sweet, easygoing 1-1/2-year-old Great Pyrenees looking for a family to call his own.  He gets along with other dogs and kids as well, and his foster mom says he is a little too interested in cats.  He is a loving gentleman who will greet you with a tail wag and a smile!  He really loves attention and affection and wants a family who isn't gone too much of the day.  To learn more or to meet Bigalow, contact:, National Great Pyrenees Rescue. He is in Junction City, Oregon.

Megan Mahan lives in Eugene with her boyfriend Jacob, their adopted Lab Maddie, many saltwater fish and two miniature Silver Appleyard Ducks, Louie and Olive.