Tuesday, August 18, 2009

we need another great pyrenees

we need another great pyrenees dog. henry needs back-up. i have come to so completely trust henry that i don't close up the chickens anymore. i know this is lazy and might come to bite me in the butt. life is just so much easier when you don't have to think about all the animals safety twenty four - seven.

i must admit that henry does bark alot--a whole lot. his bark is loud, deep and penetrating. at first it seemed excessive that he would bark at each passing butterfly or rustling leaf. anymore, it is comforting. i never thought id be able to become accustomed to such a racket. to that end tabitha is not a dog person and similarly feels comforted by his deep warning rumble.

henry takes his job very seriously. he is of a singular focus. having such dedication to his work makes him seem aloof. in fact he is nearly un-trainable. this is not a problem because he is extremely smart and has profound guarding instincts. i have taught him two things. his boundary and that he's not to eat food unless told it is ok by an omelay. the boundary issue was difficult. henry is not to enter the immediate yard even if coaxed by small playmate children. it was a long time in the making but he will not under any circumstances enter the yard open gate or no.

the food thing is important because in a pack the alpha eats first and everyone else waits. i don't want a power struggle with a dog that nearly outweighs me. i contribute these two small training successes to henry's intelligence, breeding and his young age when we got him. he mostly comes when you call him, not always. the best thing about henry is he's not needy. he likes a good pat on the head but could just as easily go without.

for a huge dog he doesn't eat much either and never finishes his bowl of food. when i refill it there are always a few nuggets of food left in his bowl. although he did kill an interloping possum and eat most of it the other day. he defecates at the boundary of his territory. kids playing in the field never step in it.

i will never own another type of dog and only get them at a very young age. we feel very lucky to have henry and might be pushing our luck trying to get another dog but i can't imagine not having the peace of mind that he offers on the farm.
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