Pyrenean Sheepdog Club of Great Britain
Berger des Pyrénées
 

CLUB INFO

BREED INFO

GALLERIES

THE PYRENEAN SHEEPDOG

The Pyrenean Sheepdog is known in its native country as Le Berger des Pyrénées where in fact it is an old indigenous breed, which has always remained in its place of origin. It is small in comparison with other sheepdog breeds, but this does not demean its ability to work tirelessly, sometimes from dawn to dusk herding large flocks of sheep. Its loyalty and willingness to obey its master drives it on to cover many miles in a working day. The breed can be traced back to the turn of the century but only gained recognition outside its area of origin during the 1914-18 war when it was used by the French Army as a messenger dog because of its speed and intelligence, during which it was nearly wiped out.

A highly intelligent hard working sheepdog, full of tremendous energy and stamina, easily recognised by its unique inquisitive and mischievous expression. When viewed in profile, it should give you the impression of being lean and racy, never carrying excess of weight, thus allowing it to travel at great speed when carrying out its herding work.

This breed is still used as a working sheepdog in France but equally it is used in a variety of other roles due to its keen sense of smell. Other modern day pursuits include; obedience, agility, fly ball, working trials and Cani Cross.

The coat on the long haired sheepdog is harsh and dense, resembling that of goats hair, but it should be a softer more woolly texture on the rump, the head coat should never conceal the eyes, it should be very short on top of the muzzle and the longer hair on the cheeks and face should sweep back to create a ‘windswept’ effect. It needs moderate grooming with no stripping or trimming necessary.

The predominant colour of the breed is fawn of varying shades; other colours are light to dark grey, black, blue merle, slate blue or brindle.

Height: - Dogs 40 – 48 cms. (15 ½ - 19 ins.) Bitches 38 – 46 cms. (15 – 18 ins.)

Potential owners of the Pyrenean Sheepdog would be well advised to gather as much information about the breed before purchasing a puppy, and potential exhibitors should obtain a copy of the breed standard to help them identify points to look for when making their selection from the litter. These dogs require a lot of exercise, at least an hour free running every day. They live to well over 10 years as a rule.

The most important thing to bear in mind if this dog is being considered, is that firstly, it is a working dog and therefore, not a suitable candidate for confinement to small houses, or flats that do not have adequate exercise areas, secondly, intense socialisation is a must from a very early age. They do have a tendency to become dominant and therefore need to be ‘mastered’. It is advised that this is not a breed for first time dog owners.

The standard says "wary of strangers". The word wary is not used to excuse nervousness or open aggression, by nature it will guard and stand away until it is sure of the situation, but in the presence of its master or mistress it should be confident and approachable.

The Pyrenean Sheepdog is a traditionally docked breed in France, its country of origin, although it is not docked in this country. They carry single or double dewclaws on the hind legs, (both are permitted).

The first Pyrenean Sheepdogs were registered with the Kennel Club in 1988, the breed has been introduced very slowly. Enthusiasts have taken the time, with a great amount of effort, to put into place the correct foundations to offer the breed the protection it rightly deserves, so that its appearance and characteristics are preserved.

The Pyrenean Sheepdog Club of Great Britain was formed in 1992 by a small number of enthusiasts who have worked hard to educate a growing membership about the breed. Milestones include; the acceptance of the Interim Breed Standard by the Kennel Club, coming off the Import Register in January 2006 and classes for the breed for the first time at Crufts 2008. Activities include; the production of a regular newsletter, annual attendance at Discover Dogs at Earls Court and the Discover Dogs Section of Crufts and an annual Fun Day. The club maintains links with the RACP (French Club). Two seminars have been held the speakers being the Secretary and the President respectively of the RACP. All has laid foundations to hopefully enable us to preserve the unique appearance and individual character of this sheepdog, which has remained, unchanged for close on a century.

 

Hon. Sec. Mrs. Liz Lewis Tel:- 0116 2881174  

Our information leaflet may be downloaded as:

  or

top

Copyright © 2016 - All Rights Reserved ~ Pyrenean Sheepdog Club of Great Britain