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His name is Montana, after the state I got him in, and he is a 7 week old Akbash/Pyrenees. So far I think I'm simply anxieting because my last dog who I had many years ago died of diabetes when I was very young, and would hate for history to repeat itself. So far it's only been a couple of days and we are already establishing a good routine. I'm also making good progress in pity training. Currently I am on a hiatus from work, so we spend all day everyday together. Quite literally we eat, sleep and sometimes poop together... Just kidding about that last part... But maybe when he's old enough to go hiking... My only concern is that he was taken from his mother at such a young age (straight from the farm), and he was one off a litter of THIRTEEN!! He might be going through too much and might suffer some trauma... Additionally, he is going to be a companion/guard dog, but I don't live on a farm where he can act out his instincts. Anyone out there who can give me some tips, reassurance or comments?
 

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You are right to be a little concerned about being young when taken from the litter - but I wouldn't get too worked up about it - after all, there is nothing that you can do about it now! Just work with the pup, and deal with any behavioral issues as they arise - being really stressed around the pup won't create a nice calm environment for him to grow up in. Most pups can be a little shell-shocked when they are first taken from the litter - even at 8 weeks or more - it's a big change!! Go easy at first, and expect the energy level to rise as he warms up to the new situation and gets used to everything.

And while many dogs are bred for certain behaviors, that doesn't mean that they are definitely going to act on those behaviors, or that it will be a major issue if they are "not allowed" to follow those instincts. Its a genetic thing, so "instincts" mean that they have a higher liklihood to do those things, and that those things are going to be much easier to train into him if you so choose. It doesn't mean that every husky needs to be pulling a sled, or that every collie needs to be herding! In fact, some people make the mistake of lowering their expectations of the dog in that area - thinking that it is acceptable for a collie to bite/nip at people's legs "because he is herding and that is what collies do". He will only be a guard dog if you train him to be a guard dog. So if you want to train him to be a suburban companion - do it! You'll be fine.
 

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I had a Great Pyr for years.

In my experience, while they can be loud and want to roam, they'll protect any flock you give them. Including family.

So, be careful with that if there's an SO or kids (do you want your dog protecting your kids from you/you from your SO if there's an argument?), but otherwise they're sweet, gentle, wonderful dogs. Big! Loud! Destructive s ometimes! Stubborn as HE77, but good dogs.
 

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I have never owned a big dog, in fact Luke is my first (he's a puppy in my avatar there). But an Akbash/Pyr mix...awesome!!! Pics please.

Anyway, being taken from a mother at a young age is never good. So I would wait to see how he does and you don't want to rush anything with puppies as they're still growing. I do know if he's going to be a guard dog on a farm, that he should spend as much time with the sheep/goats/whatever you have so he can become part of their family to protect them. But that's from watching dog programs and reading books. I'm sure you knew all that already. :)
 

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I understand your worries. My last dog died suddenly and now when Kabota sneezes, I freak out. Hopefully, we'll get over it.

iaabc.com this is where you find good, positive behaviorists. If you run into trouble, they're there for you.

As to instincts, you just need to be aware of them and provide an outlet. My last dog was a GSD x golden retriever. He protected my property by alarm barking and we played lots of fetch. I taught him over 200 words. Kabota has one crazy prey drive, so we play with the flirt pole.

Stay calm, it'll be fine.
 
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