Even though I built a sturdy shelter for our soon-to-arrive goats, I have been a little nervous because we have an abundance of predators out here. Most are nocturnal, but not all. There have also been spottings of coyotes during daylight hours, as well as reports of big predators like mountain lions (though we are not in the mountains, but close enough) and an occasional stray dog that could take down a small animal.
My husband and I pondered the possibility of a livestock guardian. We had a German Shepherd who passed away two years ago, and we missed our big boy. After a little research we decided a Great Pyrenees mix would be a good fit for our burgeoning mini-farm. I searched Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and the local animal shelter for possibilities. Great Pyrenees puppies are expensive, so I was hoping to “catch a bargain,” so to speak.
A couple of weeks ago, someone posted a photo of a beautiful Pyrenees that had been taken to the animal shelter. A stray. I thought, “Oh, what a pretty dog,” and went on with my day. After all, he would surely be claimed by his owner.
The next day my oldest daughter went on a day-date with her boyfriend to the animal shelter. She texted a short video of a dog, declaring it to be the sweetest dog who was the only one not barking (a definite plus!) and I recognized him immediately as the dog I had seen online the day before! He was still there.
The following day was a Saturday, so I hauled my three youngest to the shelter to see if he was available and how he interacted with them. My son, who is 14, was excited because it was his turn to name one of our pets and he already had a name in mind. Davis is a huge basketball fan, and Steph Curry is his favorite. It was an easy choice! We walked up and down the rows of cages until we found him.
As we loved on this sweet boy, a volunteer saw us and approached with a smile. We told him we were looking for a livestock guardian, that the dog would live outdoors with goats. He nodded and said this dog would be perfect for that job. He told us they get Pyrenees through there all the time because people don’t realize how much this breed needs to work, so they get bored and run away. After a while, owners get tired of chasing after them and give up.
We had to wait a few more days, in case someone claimed him, but no one ever came. They asked us to bring our little dogs to the shelter to meet him on neutral ground, and it’s a good thing because Clara and Hollie were not exactly welcoming. After much growling and snarling (from the little dogs…the Pyrenees just wanted to play!), we welcomed home the newest addition to Arundelle Green!
Curry spent his first week home in a cone because he had been neutered and wouldn’t leave the incision alone. He handled it like a champ, though, and is now cone-free. He had his first vet visit and it turns out he is still a puppy! She estimates he is 10-12 months old and still has some growing to do. At 79 pounds already, he is going to be a big boy!
We love him.
He is, indeed, a perfect fit.
And now to bring home the goats…
It’s a flurry of fur and happiness here, at Arundelle Green!