We found one.

gandle(4 NE)October 12, 2010

A pyrennes puppy, 10 weeks old. Ad in the Sunday paper from a breeder only about 30 miles from here. I talked Leone into checking them out and I fell in love instantly. There were 2 left. A male and a female. The male is all white and the female is white with a black eye and almost a black hat on her head.

I have loved pyrennes dogs since son got the first almost 30 years ago. The first was Jethro, huge, all white and a little stand-offish, he just acted like he would rather be doing his job wich was protecting the sheep, calves and poultry and he was very good at it. No coyote losses when Jethro was on the job.

Next was Homer and he had to be the nicest dog I ever knew. He liked everybody, loved cats, wagged his tail at squirrels and birds. He weighed over 160 pounds and thought he was a lap dog. Again, no coyote losses when he was on duty. If you happened to be close to Homer when coyotes started howling at night you almost felt the growl instead of hearing it was more of a rumble than a growl.

Next was Bear, a great dog too but unfortunately he developed bone cancer and only lived a little over 3 years.

I would have happily paid the breeders the $300 they were asking but Leone had a cooler head and said lets think about it for a few days. Lets check with a couple of vets and get their opinion on the breeders and their stock and she had another good argument that I had in the back of my mind but didn't want to think about. You are not in the best of health and what happens if the dog outlives you? Also, a huge dog like that really needs more exercise than either of us will give them.

Those are good arguments and yes I would rather not think about them but I guess she really is right.

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Of course, she is right, but which one are you getting? Boy or Girl? What are you going to name the chosen one?

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 4:46PM
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I agree with Leone about the exercise. Is there someone in your family who would agree to take him/her if that became necessary? We did that with Digby and it is such a relief knowing he will have a good home when and if the time comes.Pyrennes are beautiful dogs.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 8:24PM
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jazmynsmom(Z5 Madison-ish)

Those are important considerations. Steve and I are unable to give our puppy as much exercise as she needs, and are benefiting from the little girl next door who really wants, but isn't allowed until next summer, a puppy of her own. She takes Tullie on about five walks a week, is helping with the training (we've agreed on a handful of tricks that ONLY SHE will teach), will be helping with the hunting training and is reported to be telling neighbors she's "kind of like the puppy's co-owner." Do you have a similar neighbor nearby?

Of course it's possible the dog could outlive you. That doesn't mean you shouldn't get one: only that you need to have a plan for the pup, just like all the other parts of your life. And there is always the option to rescue and older GP in Nebraska. Older dogs require less exercise and often come mostly trained.

Then again, a semi-trained GP could always be properly exercised while helping you with your limited mobility... Wouldn't that be a sight in your neighborhood!

I know I don't have to tell you that, in study after study, dogs have been proven to lengthen and improve the quality of the lives of their owners. Forget an apple a day. You might be on to something. :o)

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 8:45PM
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Go for it George. Seize life.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 8:57PM
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Around here, the animal shelters discourage or plain refuse to allow puppies to be adopted by people of a certain age. I think they have a valid point, because of the concerns expressed in this thread. How about getting a new friend that knows some of the old tricks.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 9:00PM
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and just in case you don't know what Gandle looks like..here he is with one of his buddies.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 9:20PM
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I vote for the female.
If I were choosing.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 10:30PM
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I am so happy everyone is saying what I hoped. I totally agree George. Let's say that worse comes to worse. What if the dog outlives you? In the meantime, you will have enjoyed one of your topmost favorite things in life, the dog will have had a happy home, and maybe the dog could even keep Leone company, or go on to another loving home. I just don't see any reason not to have a dog. Those loving creatures that give life with each stroke of their coat (great exercise, great for keeping blood pressure down, and happiness up!). Go for it!

    Bookmark   October 13, 2010 at 9:16AM
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It's a sensitive issue, for sure. As a pet person, I'm inclined to say "go for it." But I understand your concern for the what if's. I wonder if you could appoint godparents for your new canine family member? Just like with human children, these folks would agree to become the new owners should you or Leone not be around.

But c'mon, who are we kidding, George? You and Leone are most certainly going to out-live all of us. :o)

My vote is for the girl. It was your description of the black "hat" that got me! Call her Minnie for Minnie Pearl. lol


    Bookmark   October 13, 2010 at 12:05PM
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For the exercise problem--train it to pull a cart--then you can take the dog for a walk while riding in the cart ;)

    Bookmark   October 13, 2010 at 1:44PM
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meldy_nva(z6b VA)

I'm inclined to agree with others: make plans for the worst, and enjoy the present.

Ten years ago, DH decided we were too old to get a young pet. So far, that's ten years of living petless... what a major lack in our house.

Years ago, I had a friend who raised GP's for show dogs, and she trained them to pull a cart. They loved it; I think it suits their idea of proper behavior.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 11:02AM
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tibs(5/6 OH)

Go for it, George. You have loads of family around, one of them ought to be able to act as god parents. Meldy, if dh told me we were too old for pets, he would be out on the curb! We have always had cats, but when I retire I want to get a dog, too.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 11:30AM
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jazmynsmom(Z5 Madison-ish)

Meldy, your husband's logic hit a sore spot with me. When I was married to my ex-husband, his parents were very controlling. I had an opportunity after grad school to do an internship in Russia, and they pitched a fit. (The internship didn't come to fruition, but that had nothing to do with their protests.) My ex-father-in-law insisted that it was wrong for me to leave the country for even six months because they were "in their dying years." We've been divorced for over 16 years, and to the best of my knowledge, J & G are still alive and "living in their dying years."

Planning is one thing --- Deferred living is quite another! Clearly your husband's argument was nowhere near as bad as my Ex-FIL's, but boy does it hit a nerve I'm surprised still exists!

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 11:55AM
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We're all in our dying years from the minute we're born. LOL I can see why it would still hit a nerve. Talk about manipulation.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 12:47PM
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jazmynsmom's comment, struck a nerve. "Planning is one thing --- Deferred living is quite another".

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 8:44PM
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I can't be objective having just got a new pup, but getting and giving love from a pet is always a good thing. My previous dog was an adult when I adopted him and he was a wonderful dog. Even though I wasn't his first family he always seemed to fit in perfectly. Once he knew he was in a home where he was loved and taken care of he was very happy. My point being dogs are adaptable, so I think as long as your able provide training, and exercise, as well as the given of food, shelter, and of course lots of love you should be good to go. ( one other thought since you have lots of experience with dogs have you considered fostering for a resuce group? You usually get the food and veterinary costs covered and you keep a dog out of the shelter until a forever home comes a long just a thought) Let us know what happens Frogged

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 9:04PM
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gandle(4 NE)

Don't think less of me but I am going to veto the idea of getting a pup.

As much trouble as George has walking and keeping his balance I just know he would be with the dog trying to train and exercise it. I can just see him falling and breaking something else.

We have had many dogs and cats over the last 62 years and we still have his constant companion "nurse" cat.

Saying all this, they sure were cute pups, when the breeder let them out in the fenced area and they came running to us they fell over each other. 8 huge feet sticking up in the air. And the female doesn't have a blackeye and hat, they are dark brown.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2010 at 9:30PM
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Leone, many decisions are hard to make--and this is one of them. I empathize, completely.

I'm afraid that one of these days, my DH, who is often unsteady, is going to fall over our cat. She's always underfoot and very silent about being there! For this reason, she has a bedroom all to herself at night--with the door securely closed.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2010 at 2:36PM
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The lady we got our little Sassi girl from took one look at
us and asked point blank if we had someone that would give
Sassi a good home if something were to happen to us.
I assured her we did.

Every day I count among my blessings this wonderful little
angel came into our lives disguised as a black and white
poodle. She makes my heart smile every day. I can't imagine our lives without her.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2010 at 8:13PM
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Gandle, as much as I love dogs, I have to agree with Leone. My husband also is very unsteady on his feet. Unless it is a service dog, trained to support a person, it is unreasonable to expect a puppy to stay out of the way. Make it a big puppy and it is an accident waiting.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 8:08PM
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If a pup is out of the question, how about a trained adult dog? Maybe contact a service organization and see what's out there.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 8:17PM
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Leone, you are right in the veto. Now if he has an urge to be with doggies, what about volunteering at a shelter or just having a neighbor come over with their dog to visit?

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 8:47PM
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