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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just wanted to see if there were any other people with LGD's. Would like to hear about the other breeds out there, their strengths and weaknesses. I only have experience with the Great Pyrenees and Kangals. More recently getting into the Malakli, more of a dual purpose breed though.
I raise my Kangals to protect my Exotic Fowl from the ever abundant coyotes and other vermin. I would rather protect them naturally than try to trap, kill, poison, etc...
For me the Pyrenees (At least the ones I had) would only bark at the fences to keep the coyotes back. But in the winter when packs of 10-30 coyotes would come to feed, the Pyrenees would get overtaken.
I feel that with what ever breed, having more than one is important. More the better. I havent heard a coyote howl in 6 years since getting my Kangals.
Would like to hear about other breeds.
 

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Well, I'm not sure exactly what breed Léon is, but I've had a few people tell me he might be an Estrela mountain dog, so we are going with that for now. he fits the standard both phisically and temperament-wise. Recently, his guarding and protection instinct have really kicked in, so we are learning to manage his agressivity towards other dogs and some people. Overall, he is one very loyal, affectionate, stubborn, sometimes frustrating, but always loving dog.



Your dogs are beautiful, by the way!
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Beautiful dog, are they related to the CAO? He sounds like my Malakli with temperment. The Kangals are alot more people friendly. Usually only agressive to those that make us uncomfortable. The Malakli love you so much,,, but they dont want to share you,,,haha. How big is your boy? This is a Malakli,,,, the Kangals big cousin!!!!!!
 

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They are originally from Portugal. Here is more about the breed history: http://www.emdaa.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4&Itemid=31

Léon is around 120 -123 lbs, and I haven't measured him in awhile, but I think he is around 40-42 inches at the withers, so not as big as many other LGBs. Big enough for me though!

He is the definition of a one person dog: he tolerates other people, but only listens to me. He loves to be around his people all the time, but doesn't let strangers get close. It's really nice when we go out walking in the evening to know that he would protect me should anything arise. On the other hand, it's no as easy to be around other dogs as he gets quite protective when they approach me. We are constantly working on a balance between socializing and keeping him from getting nervous or defensive.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Sounds like a big dog. I love them. Funny how I used to see Rotts, German Shepherds as big dogs. But now seem small.
Sounds like yours is a typical LGD. Have some great traits as a family guardian. Just important to socialize them. But you are so right. We can go anywhere and feel safe. Wife and kids at home alone, feel safe. Neighbors being robbed by METH HEADS, guess they are still smart enough to avoid my house. And even a 4 month old pup guards as well as a grown German Shepherd. Part of the breeding to function as a LGD. People frown when I recomend a LGD breed for a family Guardian. But to me it makes all the sense.
Low Prey drive, so children and pets are safer. Usually low energy breed when action not needed. Always on watch! Although may allow someone into your space,, will always be on watch. And LOVE like the best of dogs. There are a few disadvanteges, but nothing intolerable. Appretiate the link!!! Neat breed. How did you run across such a rare breed?
 

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Overall, he is one very loyal, affectionate, stubborn, sometimes frustrating, but always loving dog.

You forgot drop dead gorgeous. :)
 

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My experience is with several breeds, but the one I like best is the the CO. I like the temperament. Then the Kangal and CAO.

What I love is the size, beauty, defense drive, loyalty and ability to survive elements in the CO and some of which is found in the others but Kangal isn't as high of defense drive and want to roam, move more. CAO the same, CO is a real home body though so I like that.
 

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I do not know why you would have seen german shepherds as huge since they are limited to 24-26 inches for males at the shoulder. To many here in America do like to breed dogs super large or super small against breed standard though.

German shepherd are not livestock guardians, they are herders.

Your dog is lovely. What have you found to be the best and worst traits of the breed?
 

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Sounds like a big dog. I love them. Funny how I used to see Rotts, German Shepherds as big dogs. But now seem small.
Ha, my Rottweiler is the biggest dog i've ever had and he seems very small to me (26 inchs and around 105 pounds). It blows my mind when people say he's big. I bet he would look like a kitten to you :)

I don't really think I have waht it takes to own one, so I most likely never will, but I LOVE COs. They are just wonderful dogs.
 

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Neat breed. How did you run across such a rare breed?
As I said, no one knows for sure what he is, but he fits all the descriptions of Estrelas I have read, and two breeders have contacted me and told me they are sure he is one. The mystery is still how the heck did he get to be lost in the forest in Canada 2 years ago, in the dead of winter.

Overall, he is one very loyal, affectionate, stubborn, sometimes frustrating, but always loving dog.

You forgot drop dead gorgeous. :)
Now THAT goes without saying! :smile:
 

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What I like about CAO is that while they make a good LGD they also have herding ability, to move and keep together a flock or bunch. CO really don't do that in true fashion.
 

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I keep 4 Pyrs & an Akabsh/Maremma cross...Only two Pyrs are in with my goats though...The other 3 did not cut it as working guardians so they guard the couch...lol!
I agree that a Pyrs first line of defense is barking to ward off intruders & you are right...A Pyr or two are no match for a pack of hungry coyotes!...Thankfully there is no real predator problem around here so my dogs do the job...No sense in bothering with my little goats for a predator when he can go to the farm down the road & not be hassled by angry Pyrs!
Now my Akabsh/Maremma cross was in with sheep for 4 yrs. before he came into rescue...I found he hated being away from his people & chased the goats no matter what I did so he is a happy house dog now...One difference I have noticed between him & my Pyrs is that he alerts a lot less & when he does he means it!...Kind of a bark softly & carry & heavy bite if needed kind of dog.
Your dog is absolutely stunning!:wave:
 

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Beautiful dog, are they related to the CAO? He sounds like my Malakli with temperment. The Kangals are alot more people friendly. Usually only agressive to those that make us uncomfortable. The Malakli love you so much,,, but they dont want to share you,,,haha. How big is your boy? This is a Malakli,,,, the Kangals big cousin!!!!!!
holy crap, that is one BIG dog! Welcome to the board. Wish Brad A was around to chat with you, he has a very interesting group of dogs
 

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I am wondering how tall the man is?, his proportions make him look fairly short.
Beautiful dog you have there, totally stunning!
 

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Are Tibetian Mastiffs true LGDs? Cause they're a breed I really love.
A CO is high on my "most coveted list". I am in complete awe of the breed as a whole. Only met one IRL, and she wasn't overly fond of me (I worked in the kennel she was boarded at). This particular dog once bit through a car tire...
I'm looking into pyrs. I've met a lot of them, and have yet to meet one I did not like.
 
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