You've done your research and now feel ready to buy a Great Pyrenees puppy.  Remember that this puppy will be a part of your family and life for many years to come.  All Great Pyrenees puppies are cute, please resist impulse buying.   Take the appropriate measures to purchase the right puppy for your family. A regional list of GPCA breeders may be obtained by contacting Kerry Kern Woods, 1206 West Bender Road, Ellensburg,
WA 98926,, 509-925-3339. lub Information, All GPCA members agree to abide by the GPCA Code of Ethics.  

Below are suggested questions to ask a breeder. Ask breeders lots of questions and expect them to ask many questions of you. Should a breeder not ask questions of you, consider looking elsewhere, as good breeders are very concerned about the homes that their puppies are going to, not just a "puppy sale".  

Question: Are both parents registered with the American Kennel Club or the Canadian Kennel Club?
Answer: There are other registries but not all may be legitimate. Copies of the parent’s registrations should be available to the puppy buyer.  

Question: Do you x-ray the hips of your breeding stock?
Answer: Yes. The x-ray should be certified & rated by OFA, GDC, Penn Hip or a certified radiologist.
The number one structural problem in the Great Pyrenees breed is hip dysplasia.  

Question: Do you help with rescue?
Answer: All breeders should help with rescue in some way. “If You Won’t Rescue, Don’t Breed”.  

 What health problems are inherent in this breed? Do you give a written contract that covers health concerns and guarantees?
A written contract is a must to protect the puppy, buyer and breeder. Skin and ear problems are the most common problems of Great Pyrenees. Hip dysplasia and patellas are an area for concern.
As with all breeds, more evidence of cancer is being seen.  

Question: Are you a member of the Great Pyrenees Club of America, and/or a member of a local breed or dog club.
Answer: Breeders that are involved with their breed as a rule are better breeders.  

Question: How many dogs do you currently own? How many different breeds of dogs do you own? How many litters do you have each year? Why did you breed this litter?
Answer: These are questions to determine if you are dealing with a puppy mill. Keep in mind that many litters can indicate a puppy mill.  Breeders should be up front when asked questions, if they are evasive you may not want to buy a puppy from them.  

Question: Do you have a web site?
Answer: A “glitzy” web site does not always mean that it is a reputable breeder. Let your questions and the breeder’s answers guide you.  

Question: Is it possible to visit the parents of the puppies and the puppies at the appropriate time?
Answer: A buyer should be able to visit the home of the breeder to meet the breeder and to see the conditions of the dogs and the kennel. Although elaborate equipment is not necessary, the area should be clean. The puppies should be healthy and in a warm, dry and clean environment.  

Question: What vet care (vaccinations, wormings, and health checks) do you give your pups before they go to their new homes. At what age do you allow your pups to go? How do you determine what pup goes to each home and do you do temperament tests?
Answer: Puppies should not leave the breeder before 8 weeks of age. Written documentation of all vaccinations, wormings, vet checks, and what food has been fed should be giving to the new owner. The breeder should be able to explain why a certain pup was chosen for you.  

Question: Are references from prior puppy buyers available. Are you available to me after I purchase a puppy for guidance and questions? Will you take this pup back or help find a new home if circumstances change and I cannot keep it?
Answer: A breeder should be able to give references from prior buyers and from their veterinarian. A breed should be available for questions and asks to be notified of any problems to help with the issues. A reputable breeder takes back the dogs they have sold or helps the owner find a new home for the dog. It should be in the written contract that the breeder would be notified of any change of address of the buyer.  

Question:  Do you require spaying/neutering of your companion puppies and if not, why not?
Answer: Rescue is a huge problem in the Great Pyrenees breed and indiscriminate breeding is increasing this problem. If you are buying a companion quality puppy, your contract should state that the pup should be neutered/spayed by a certain age and the limited box checked on the AKC registration. Your pup may come to you already spayed/neutered and this should be stated in your contract.

Again, we urge anyone planning to buy a Great Pyrenees to research the breed carefully, and to be patient and cautious. The first available puppy or the lowest priced puppy may not be the best choice for you and your family.
Well-bred Pyrs are not constantly available and purchasing the right puppy may mean waiting for the breeder you feel is the right one for you and the right puppy for you. Well-bred Pyrs are not inexpensive and the price will
vary from area to area and breeder. Please be sure that you are willing and able to make the commitment to this puppy for the next 10 to 12 years.  Puppies are very cute, but they grow up to be large dogs with a lot of coat.
These dogs are living and sensitive animals who should not be discarded simply because they have become an inconvenience, or your personal life changes. A significant number of Great Pyrenees come into rescue each year,
because people did not research the breed thoroughly or did not take the commitment seriously. Please do not let the Pyr you purchase become one of those statistics.  

A few suggestions of web sites and books for further information. - Great Pyrenees Club of America - American Kennel Club - Livestock Guardian - clicker  

Great Pyrenees by Joan Hustice Walker, publisher Barron's
Great Pyrenees by Kim Lasley, TFH Publications
Livestock Protection Dogs by David Sims and Orysia Dawydiak,
Mother Knows Best by Carol Lea Benjamin, publisher Howell  


"A Puppy Buyer's Guide to the Internet: Online Resources to Find and Raise a Healthy Purebred Dog."
Website at:

This piece is a helpful summary of the search for and early socialization of a purebred puppy. We hope it is useful to your members, especially breeders who would like something new for their puppy kits.

The author is Stuart F. Eckmann, Co-Chair of the Health Committee of the Tibetan Terrier Club of America, the club’s liaison to the AKC/CHF, and developer of the Tibetan Terrier DNA Bank & Registry. He may be emailed at

Questions for AKC/CHF may be sent to or call toll-free 888-682-9696.



The Pyr has a single dewclaw on the front leg and a double dewclaw on the hind leg.

This double dewclaw is one of the distinguishing features of the breed, and a requirement in the breed standard. If a Pyr is to compete in the show ring, these dewclaws must be two completely separate, well formed claws, arising from the inner aspect of the pastern and distinguishable as separate, individual toes, for this is really what they are.

Some dogs have quite a rigid structure, while others have totally floppy dewclaws. They may be set quite low with the lower one almost touching the ground but generally are set a little higher, well clear of the dog's foot.

The purpose of these extra toes is not known and they serve no function in the breed today, but presumably had a use, back in the mists of time. Other French breeds such as the Pyrenean Shepherd and Beuceron also have double dewclaws, perhaps they shared a common, distant ancestor.

When observing the Pyr movement from the rear, it is important to remember that these dewclaws may give the impression that the dog is moving too close.

They never seem to cause problems, which surprises those who own other breeds without dewclaws. The only care they require is to keep the nail trimmed to prevent it growing right round and digging back into the toe.



Pets can have reactions to stings, just as people do. The dog will most likely be stung on the nose or mouth, or possibly the foot - the rest of his body is well protected by the coat.Unless you see it happen, his behavior will be puzzling, until the affected area starts to swell, which usually happens quickly.

The dog will be somewhat agitated and will run about shaking his head, or rubbing his muzzle with his paws. The area affected will start to swell within minutes and the swelling can become quite considerable over the next half hour or so. A sting in the mouth can cause an obstruction to the airway if not treated quickly.

An inspection of the affected area will probably reveal nothing, as the dog will usually manage to dislodge the sting by rubbing it. If it is still there, remove as quickly as you can.

Treatment choices:
Homeopathic Apis , which is prepared from bees, can be administered immediately, if you have it. It works well in preventing excessive swelling and its worth keeping a small bottle of Apis on hand, especially if your dog(or other family members) is known to be allergic to stings. Smearing a little honey on the sting site is also helpful to relieve the discomfort.

Veterinary treatment may be required if your dog reacts rather badly to stings. Your vet will administer antihistamine medication and steroids if he feels they are needed.



Anti-freeze is essential for your car -- but it's dangerous for your dog and cat. So dangerous that only one teaspoonful can kill an average cat and five tablespoonsful can kill a 30-pound dog. Anti-freeze smells good and tastes good. Don't risk the life and health of your pet. Don't leave pans of anti-freeze in the garage or let it flow into the street where pets can get to it. Check your radiator, hoses, and clamps periodically for leaks. Remember, animals can't read the warning labels on anti-freeze containers.



Only a healthy pet is a happy companion. To assure your pet's daily well-being requires regular care and close attention to any hint of ill health. The American Veterinary Medical Association therefore suggests that you consult your veterinarian if your pet shows any of the following signs:

- Abnormal discharges from the nose, eyes, or other body openings.
- Abnormal behavior, sudden viciousness, or lethargy.
- Abnormal lumps, limping, or difficulty getting up or lying down.
- Loss of appetite, marked weight losses or gains, or excessive water consumption.
- Difficult, abnormal, or uncontrolled waste elimination.
- Excessive head shaking, scratching, and licking or biting any part of the body.
- Dandruff, loss of hair, open sores, and a ragged or dull coat.
- Foul breath or excessive tarter deposits on teeth.



submitted by Jane Manturi

Yield: 25 servings

1/2 c Whole wheat flour
1 ts White sugar
1/4 ts Salt
6 tb Margarine - softened
1 Egg
1/2 c Non-fat dry powdered milk
1/2 c Cool water
1 tsp Garlic powder- NOT GARLIC SALT

Mix all dry ingredients - flour, sugar, salt, powdered milk and garlic powder - together. Add margarine, egg and water and mix. Knead for 3 to 5 minutes until dough forms a nice ball. Roll to about 1/2 inch thick and cut into desired shapes. Bake on lightly greased cookie sheet for 30 minutes at 350 degrees F.

For variation use chicken or beef broth.

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