With such similar parent breeds, the Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd is the ultimate family dog. Watch out, though, because these pups may not be a good fit for every household! Here is a look at what to expect from this mixed breed so that you can decide whether it is the right pooch for you. Let’s begin.
What are the Basic Traits of the Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
- Height: 21 – 28 inches
- Weight: 60 – 115lbs
- Coat: Double coated, medium to long fur
- Level of Affection: High
- Kid-Friendly: Yes, with proper training
- Dog Friendly: Yes, with proper socialization
- Cat Friendly: Potentially, with proper training
- Preferred Climate: Cool climate
- Shedding Levels: High
- Trainability: Moderate
- Potential to Bark/Howl: High
What Do Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds Look Like?
As with most mixed breeds, it can be difficult to predict what the Great Pyrenees will look like. They may take after either parent or their physical appearance may be a perfect combination of their parent genes.
How Big Will a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd Get?
Most Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds will grow big enough to fall into the large breed category. Naturally, some may be on the smaller side, but know that your pup will take up a significant amount of space in your home. Males are often larger than females.
What Kind of Coat Will a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd Have?
This mixed breed will have a very fluffy double coat. You should be prepared for a lot of shedding throughout the year. These dogs may have medium to long fur, depending on which parent that they take after.
The topcoat may be straight or wavy and has a coarse texture. The undercoat will be thickest and feel woolly to the touch. Some males may have a thicker patch of fur around the neck.
It is unlikely that a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd will have a coat that is a solid color. White may be a dominant shade, but this pup will have markings that are white, black, tan, blue merle, red merle, gray, or reddish-brown.
They may have a darker mask around their face as well as dark fur on their ears. You may find speckled patches of color around their legs.
What Kind of Temperament Will a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd Have?
The Great Pyrenees and Australian Shepherds have been bred to be independent thinking working dogs. Despite being pets, they retain many of these traits, making them dominant and willful dogs. This is why Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds aren’t recommended for first-time owners.
These dogs need a loving but firm hand. You – and other family members – will need to establish yourself as the leader or find that this pup is resistant to all types of training or commands.
Once you get past their stubbornness, you will be hard-pressed to find a more loyal or loving dog. They will follow you around and take any opportunity to cuddle with you or lie on you like a blanket.
The Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd is great around children, gentle, and very loving. That being said, these dogs can have strong herding tendencies that can manifest around younger children. Make sure that you always supervise them around small children to prevent this.
These dogs are wary around strangers which can be a problem as Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds also tend to be protective of their owners. To avoid any issues, socialize your puppy at a young age. This will make them more comfortable around other people.
As they are pretty social, Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds can get along with other dogs. You will need to socialize them at a young age, however, to guarantee that they get along. It should be noted that this mixed breed may try to herd smaller dogs or cats.
What are the Main Health Issues of Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds?
As a mixed breed, Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds tend to be healthier than purebred dogs. Nevertheless, the parent breeds do have certain health issues in common that may manifest in their mixed offspring as well.
What is the Life Expectancy of the Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
These dogs have a lifespan of 11 to 14 years. This is a bit longer than most other large dog breeds. To guarantee that your dog lives a long, healthy, and happy life, it is important to follow proper nutrition recommendations, give them enough exercise, and stay on top of vet visits.
What are the Common Health Issues of the Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
Here are the main health conditions to watch out for:
- Hip and elbow dysplasia
- Eye conditions
- Drug sensitivity
You should be especially cautious with your puppy while they are growing. This is because Great Pyrenees tend to grow at a rapid rate until they are 18 months old. During this period, your puppy may experience a lot of discomforts and it is important to handle them gently and to exercise them carefully until this stage is over.
What are the Nutrition Requirements for a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
The right level of nutrition is determined by breed, size, energy level, and health conditions. This can make it difficult to decide which specific dog food brand to give a mixed breed such as the Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd.
As a puppy, it is enough to give your pooch high-quality dog food. Look for brands that only use proper protein, fat, and carbohydrates sources and are free of artificial preservatives or additives. Good dog food will also contain an appropriate balance of the main food groups.
Always ask your vet for advice. They will be able to consider your pup’s specific needs and recommend a dog food that is perfectly suited to them. This is especially important if your dog has any health conditions that can be managed via diet.
This mixed breed does have a high potential for weight gain. To avoid this, follow the manufacturer’s feeding guidelines properly. Only provide food at mealtimes and don’t leave food out for your dog to graze on. You should also limit how many treats your dog gets.
How Much Exercise Does a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd Need?
One of the reasons a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd isn’t a good fit for all families is because this is a high-energy breed. Bred to be working dogs, these pups require a great deal of exercise daily.
You will need to exercise this mixed breed between half an hour and an hour a day. Every dog is different so you will have to figure out how much physical activity is right for them. You may want to start at the twenty-minute mark and slowly work your way up from there.
If your dog appears to have a lot of energy to expend after your bout of exercise, it means they need more. On the other hand, if they appear drained, then you need to cut down on physical activity.
Try to mix up the kind of exercise you give your dog. On most days a good, long walk will do, although you may want to break these up into two sessions so that your pup doesn’t get bored throughout the day.
At the same time, try to add in some Frisbee or games of fetch. If your pooch takes after their Australian Shepherd parents, you will find that they take to agility training as well.
As mentioned, you need to be careful with your puppy during their main growing stage. Up until they are 18 months, be gentle with how you exercise your puppy. It is best to speak to your vet about which kind of physical activity is acceptable for them.
Try to keep your dog off hard surfaces such as concrete. Instead, try to walk them on grass or similar surfaces that are more comfortable for their bones.
How Much Grooming Does a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd Need?
Their thick, double coats mean that these dogs shed throughout the year. If their coat is similar to that of an Australian Shepherd, they may blow their coat one or two times during the year, causing them to shed more.
Despite the shedding, it is easy to keep your Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd well-groomed. To reduce shedding, brush them several times a week. When they blow their coat, increase this to once a day.
As these dogs have a double coat, use a slicker brush as well as an undercoat rake. The latter will help to dislodge loose fur stuck on the bottommost layer. During the shedding season, use a de-shedding brush for greater efficiency.
It is best to limit how often you bathe these dogs. A bath every few months should do the trick. Only break this cycle if your dog is very smelly or dirty.
What is the Best Living Environment for a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
These dogs love cool or cold climates and thrive in them due to their thick coats. They do not do as well in warm or moderate climates.
If your Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd lives in a warmer region, take steps to keep them safe and comfortable. During the warm months always keep your dog indoors, preferably near a fan or air conditioning. They will need easy access to cool, fresh water at all times.
You should only take your dog out during the cooler parts of the day – early morning or early evening. Avoid taking them out for a walk or hike at any other time as these dogs are prone to overheating.
Their size and energy levels make Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds unsuitable for apartments. These dogs may also be prone to barking when bored or left alone and this may not work well if you share walls with your neighbors.
Ideally, these dogs should live in a moderate-sized home with plenty of yard space. They are happiest when they can come in and out of the house all day long. Being able to play in the yard helps them to work off any excess energy and avoid destructive behavior.
How Do You Train a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
This mixed breed is incredibly intelligent and can pick up a wide variety of commands and tricks. At the same time, this pooch has a dominant and stubborn streak.
This is why you need to introduce and establish yourself as a dominant figure in your family from the moment that you bring your puppy home. They will be more likely to listen to you if they know that you are in charge.
Be firm with their training, but always use positive reinforcement. Your dog will be more committed to their training if you use affection and treats to guide them.
Where Can You Find a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
You will need to find a breeder that specifically deals with this mixed breed. This may take a little research and you may need to look outside your immediate region.
Always choose a reputable breeder. A good breeder will thoroughly research the medical and genetic histories of both parents as well as their predecessors. In doing so, they can reduce the risk of common health issues in your dog.
Can You Adopt a Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd?
Considered a designer breed, it is uncommon to find Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd mixes in shelters. You may want to look at shelters outside your immediate area or greater success.
Here are some frequently asked questions regarding Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds:
How Big Do Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds Get?
These dogs can grow up to 28 inches and weigh as much as 115lbs and are classified as large.
Are Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds Good Family Dogs?
These dogs are incredibly friendly and loving. They are also great with children.
Do Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherds Shed a Lot?
These dogs can shed quite a bit throughout the year, but fortunately, they are easy to groom.
This is what you need to know about the Great Pyrenees Australian Shepherd. Does this mixed breed seem like a good fit for your household?