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FARM Brave and Loyal: An Illustrated Celebration of Livestock Guardian Dogs
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    Happy on the mountain
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    58,181

    Brave and Loyal: An Illustrated Celebration of Livestock Guardian Dogs

    DW bought a copy of this, at Tractor Supply IIRC. It's a neat book, I haven't had a chance to read it yet as she just finished it. On looking it over, it seems more a 'reading' book than a 'reference' book, there's no index or bibliography. The table of contents is just that and gives little hint of what's where.

    It's printed on calendared (slick) paper with great pictures. It's a heavy and substantial book.

    I post Amazon links mostly for the access to customer reviews, they seem good but not abundant for this narrow interest book, but I thought some here might find it useful.

    fwiw-
    ================

    https://www.amazon.com/Brave-Loyal-I.../dp/151070910X

    Hardcover: 224 pages
    Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing; Ill edition (January 3, 2017)
    Language: English
    ISBN-10: 151070910X
    ISBN-13: 978-1510709102
    Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 1.3 x 9.4 inches

    Learn about the brave dogs who help guard livestock around the world!

    Wolf populations in the Rocky Mountains have reached recovery goals due in large part to an environmentally friendly method of predator control now in use on western ranches: livestock protection dogs (also called livestock guardian dogs). Although these dogs have been used around the world for thousands of years in primitive systems of livestock production, it’s only in the past four decades that they have been put to work in America in a systematic manner. Guardian dogs were imported to the United States, and their use has allowed the expansion of predator populations into areas where the animals were previously subject to lethal control. The use of guardian dogs is typical wherever livestock may encounter predators—from fox and coyotes, to wolves and grizzly bears.

    In Brave and Loyal, Cat Urbigkit tracks her journeys from a Wyoming sheep ranch to learn about working livestock protection dogs around the globe. Using historic accounts, published research, personal interviews on four continents, and her own experience on western rangelands, she provides the reader an intimate look into the everyday lives of working livestock protection dogs. Brave and Loyal includes details on raising successful guardians, their behaviors, a discussion of breeds and historic use, an assessment of numbers for various predator challenges, the adoption and spread of programs to place guardians on American farms and ranches, problems and benefits associated with guardian dogs, predator ploys, and matching the dog to the predator challenge. Urbigkit’s work provides the best information on working livestock guardian dogs around the globe, accompanied by more than one hundred beautiful color photos.
    The wonder of our time isnít how angry we are at politics and politicians; itís how little weíve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  2. #2
    They ARE really cool dogs, in their proper place. Generations (and even centuries)of breeding have made them a relatively poor choice for someone who wants a pet. They don't recognize or respect boundaries... if you have a small property, you could find yours protecting three neighbors' livestock as well, and that *could* include "protecting" them from their rightful owner! LOL!

    They get so devoted to "their" livestock (no matter what species you conditioned them to protect) that I've seen several instances of the dogs simply being given away or shipped with the last animals to leave... their devastation at losing "their" charges is similar to a one man dog whose owner dies.

    They are difficult to impossible to train beyond the most basic obedience, and most owners don't even try... they want the dogs to be completely autonomous and do their work without needing direction or help.

    They aren't my cup of tea, personally. I prefer a dog that is devoted to its humans, and includes livestock protection as part of its job because it recognizes the livestock (and any children) as part of its "pack". I love dogs that are smart enough to learn what our needs are, and to step in to help in any way possible. Where we live, a good English Shepherd or two fit the bill perfectly... smart enough to run the place if they had opposable thumbs, yet biddable enough to obey... they're second in command, but with a few exceptions (in a couple bad lines) won't ever challenge you for the Alpha spot. They're bold enough and generally big enough to chase off a pack of coyotes or a black bear. Ours have run mountain lions off at least twice.

    If I lived out west and had to pasture herds or flocks over huge areas, and had wolves of grizzlies to contend with, a few good LGDs would be my first choice. I'd supplement them with herding dogs, as well.

    In most places under a few hundred acres, especially where tgere are close neighbors, both the dogs and humans are likely to end up unhappy.

    There will always be some exceptions.

    Summerthyme

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Happy on the mountain
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    Very well said, ST.

    The parents (and one other dog) of the two young dogs currently guarding the New Goat Show (60 odd head of goats) in our pasture reportedly took on and killed a 350 pound black bear that encroached on their flock a few weeks ago. These two are Anatolian shepherds.

    They are huge dogs and quite powerful. They like DW and I because we feed them on days their owner can't get by here to do it. But we are very respectful of them. They obviously are not pets, and I totally agree these breeds are not good family dogs.

    Of course, we are accustomed to Filas, which are people guardian dogs, and treat 'their' people just as livestock guardian dogs treat their flocks
    The wonder of our time isnít how angry we are at politics and politicians; itís how little weíve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  4. #4
    Never planned on getting one but we acquired a Great Pyrenees about five years ago. He's a house dog along with the two Border Collies.What a combination!

    We don't know much about his early life. He belonged to an elderly lady who'd adopted him from the pound but just couldn't keep him home. After he showed up here for the fourth time - dragging a twelve foot chain - she took us up on the offer to keep him. He's the most long-suffering,loving,goofy, bouncy fur ball.He tolerates the collies trying to round him up, and just loves everything and everybody.But he has issues! He hates the outdoors! Practically crosses his legs and waits until he's about to burst before he'll ask to go pee. If we want him to go lay down all we have to say is "you going outside,Kojo?" and he scurries off into his "house" - the corner kitchen cabinet with the lazy Susan removed. He's terrified of any loud or strange noise. So thunder, gunshots, rain on the metal roof, or when the power goes out, like earlier this week. Talk about a soup sandwich in a rain storm! He just becomes a quivering wreck. But we love him to bits. And his fur spins up into the most luxurious yarn!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    East Texas
    Posts
    2,545
    Quote Originally Posted by Dozdoats View Post
    Very well said, ST.

    The parents (and one other dog) of the two young dogs currently guarding the New Goat Show (60 odd head of goats) in our pasture reportedly took on and killed a 350 pound black bear that encroached on their flock a few weeks ago. These two are Anatolian shepherds.

    They are huge dogs and quite powerful. They like DW and I because we feed them on days their owner can't get by here to do it. But we are very respectful of them. They obviously are not pets, and I totally agree these breeds are not good family dogs.

    Of course, we are accustomed to Filas, which are people guardian dogs, and treat 'their' people just as livestock guardian dogs treat their flocks
    We had 2 anatolian shepherds when we raised goats. In 10 years of having goats, we never lost one to a predator. The female (Annie) was raised from a puppy by us and was very protective of her goats and my wife. If a stranger approached to look at the goats, she would stand between them and my wife. It was always a site to behold. She was such a great dog.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Green County, Kentucky
    Posts
    9,313
    I've had several LGD's over the years, and have developed some preferences. I won't have another purebred Great Pyrenees, although they are lovely dogs and great for some situations. But they are (as Summerthyme commented) roamers who don't respect boundaries, and they tend to bark All. Night. Long. The LGD I have now is half Maremma and half Akbash, and other than her recently developed propensity for nipping male visitors on the back-side (put a wallet in both back pockets if you come visit us, guys, LOL!) she is pretty near perfect. She only barks at night if it's necessary (coyotes are numerous around here), and while I do let her run loose because of where we live -- way out in the sagebrush in the high desert -- she totally respects fences and will stay in even a small paddock without any problems. She also thinks she's my baby (she was only six weeks old when I got her, and had been bottle-raised by another woman). I'm still working out how to make it work, but when we head for Kentucky in a couple of weeks, she will go with us.

    And I intend to get another LGD puppy to start raising pretty soon, maybe later this year. Cameo is six years old, and by the time the new puppy is mature and working, Cammie will be starting to slow down.

    Kathleen
    Behold, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him.
    Job 26:14

    wickr ID freeholder45

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Tampa, FL
    Posts
    561
    Here's my Skip, a Great Pyrenees ....at full gallop he runs like a freight train. He & his brother keep it tidy at night around the acreage.

    The collie in the shadows & her sister are the true RINGMASTERS though !



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Green County, Kentucky
    Posts
    9,313
    Quote Originally Posted by Ku Commando View Post
    Here's my Skip, a Great Pyrenees ....at full gallop he runs like a freight train. He & his brother keep it tidy at night around the acreage.

    The collie in the shadows & her sister are the true RINGMASTERS though !


    Beautiful dog, and the shortest coat I've ever seen on a Great Pyrenees! I want a coat like that on my next LGD puppy.

    Kathleen
    Behold, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him.
    Job 26:14

    wickr ID freeholder45

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Happy on the mountain
    Posts
    58,181
    Is Skip clipped? Great looking pups...

    Rufus, the Pyr who guarded last year's Goat Show here, was seriously shaggy. But then, it's colder in NW NC at 3000' than where you are ... We liked Rufus a lot, but he and his goats are now in another of their owner's pastures. Ours is kind of the 'nursery' for the goats- it was so neat to see Rufus in the sun on the hillside, all covered up with young kids. He likes babies, his owner says.
    The wonder of our time isnít how angry we are at politics and politicians; itís how little weíve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  10. #10
    We had an Australian shepherd (died 4 years ago) that was a superb dog of about 60#. When she reached her late golden tears we got two mixed breed pups from a lady with a huge Great Pyrenee bitch that befriended a large boxer in their community about 50 miles from here. The two pups grew to look exactly like this: (Anatolian shepherd)



    They were raised with the Aussie and very small children who carried them around like toys until they weighed too much. The female weighs right at 100# and the male is about 125#. The do exactly as the poster above said... they roam quite a bit... in good weather stay primarily outside the small fenced area and roam (I am guessing) about a 200 acre area. They are up seemingly all night, bark at night (usually back in the woods anywhere between 100 yards to 1/2 mile from the house and its fenced lot) and generally confront anything that comes anywhere near the house. They are friendly with people (once I greet the people but not until) and learn who are the friends. However... they kill any animals that get anywhere near the house regardless of size or type. They pretty much gave up on the deer when they realized they were too fast but still chase them if they approach the area around the house. In short, the critter situation changed greatly when the pups grew up. Coons, possums, skunks, foxes, coyotes etc. are seldom seen from the house anymore although the turkeys don't seem to bother them... perhaps because I have chickens.... don't really know why.

    When on a leash my 2 year old granddaughter could lead them as do wife and self and on occasion they will accompany me on walks... not always.... but....

    If I take a long walk and end up back in the woods as I did Tuesday and I sit down to rest or even lie down as I did that day..... I can look around and see one usually within 200 feet of me watching me. Tuesday I saw the female lying in the sun as was I and I got up, walked over and joined her. She is half my weight... snuggled up to me and we lay there about 45 minutes looking at the leafless tree canopy, counting our blessings and enjoying the good weather. (I would tell y'all we conversed a bit but you would know I am nuts so I'll not admit doing so.)

    When I started the return walk to the house she was with me about half way then took her own path through the dense woods. She was back on duty when I got to the house.

    I suppose they are classified as mutts but they are my buddies and are the best alarm system ever conceived.

    If I could feed them I would have a half dozen.

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