Maremma Sheepdog vs Great Pyrenees - Breed Comparison

Maremma Sheepdog vs Great PyreneesMaremma Sheepdog is originated from Italy but Great Pyrenees is originated from France. Maremma Sheepdog may grow 9 cm / 3 inches shorter than Great Pyrenees. Maremma Sheepdog may weigh 9 kg / 19 pounds lesser than Great Pyrenees. Both Maremma Sheepdog and Great Pyrenees has almost same life span. Maremma Sheepdog may have less litter size than Great Pyrenees. Both Maremma Sheepdog and Great Pyrenees requires Moderate maintenance.

Basic Information

Group:
Working dog
Working dog
Origin:
Italy
France
Height Male:
65 - 73 cm
25 - 29 inches
70 - 82 cm
27 - 33 inches
Height Female:
65 - 73 cm
25 - 29 inches
65 - 78 cm
25 - 31 inches
Weight Male:
35 - 45 kg
77 - 100 pounds
48 - 54 kg
105 - 120 pounds
Weight Female:
35 - 45 kg
77 - 100 pounds
44 - 54 kg
97 - 120 pounds
Life Span:
10 - 13 Years
10 - 12 Years
Litter Size:
6 - 9
7 - 12
Size:
Large dog
Large dog
Other Names:
Maremmano, Abruzzese Sheepdog
Pyrenean Mountain Dog
Colors Available:
White
cream, White, white with patches of light tan or grey
Coat:
Long and Thick
Medium to long, coarse, straight or wavy
Shedding:
Moderate, Seasonal
Moderate
Temperament:
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, Territorial
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Territorial
Grooming:
Moderate maintenance
Moderate maintenance
Trainability:
Easy
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
Yes

History

maremma sheepdogKnown also as the Cane de Pastore Maremmano-Abruzzese, the Maremma Sheepdog is often referred to as the Maremmano or the Abruzzese Sheepdog.

This is a working dog – a guardian of sheep and an indigenous dog to central Italy. The dog has been used for centuries already to guard sheep.

It was in 1924 that the first standard for the breed was published.

great pyreneesThe Great Pyrenees could be from Spain or France because the dog hails from the Pyrenees Mountains, which spans both France and Spain.

The dog was used to defend flocks from predators but its lineage goes a long way back, thousands of years in fact. It is thought that they only arrived in Europe about 5,000 years ago. The dog was adopted into the court of Louis the XIV as a royal dog.

During the mid 1600s, the dog's numbers dwindled but the French developed kennel clubs where the dog could be bred and its numbers restored. It was in 1933 that the Great Pyrenees received American Kennel Club recognition.

Description

maremma sheepdog puppyThe Maremma Sheepdog is a large dog with a muscular build. Some people who have owned these distinctive-looking dogs say he is like a big bear. He stands at 65 to 73 cm in height, both male and female, and he weighs 35 to 45 kg.

The coat is long, thick and white with a dense undercoat. If you look you’ll see flashes of pale orange or apricot amid the white. There is thicker, longer hair around the neck area.

The nose is black, the eyes brown and the ears medium length and floppy. The long tail is set low and is thickly feathered. You can expect 6 – 10 puppies from these dogs.

Temperament:

The Maremma has always been used to guarding sheep, and today even though he is looked upon as a wonderful, friendly companion dog, he also makes an excellent watch dog, being brave and courageous. He isn’t the kind of dog that you think of as getting wildly excited over something, as he has a dignified aura about him.

He is an independent dog, so training and sociaization will be absolutely imperative as he is strong-willed and likes to do things his way. Once trained and socialized, it is amazing to see such a large dog obeying all your commands such as ‘lie down, come, sit an stay'. He is very intelligent and shouldn’t have any trouble learning these basic commands.

He is calm and gets on well with children as well as other pets in the home. With his role as guardian of sheep, he has learned to be loyal and patient and will make a loyal ad loving family pet he takes his role as guardian very seriously.

He loves hard work, and shepherds have always appreciated the splendid work he does guarding their flocks. As a companion you will also appreciate the many excellent qualities he possesses.

The Maremma Sheepdog isn’t recommended for life in the city where there is a tiny garden. He has always been accustomed to large open spaces and requires a large garden. He won’t tolerate heat well with that thick coat of his and will require a shady spot in your garden to retreat to.

great pyrenees puppyThis is a beautiful dog, noticeable by the essentially white coat and his overall size, standing at 70 to 82cm and weighing between 40 to 54 kg.

The double coat is medium to long, coarse and straight or wavy and and it can be solid white, cream or white with patches of light tan or grey.

The nose is black, the eyes brown, the ears of medium length and floppy and the tail long and plumed.

Temperament:

The Great Pyrenees is an intelligent, strong willed dog with a mind of his own so he will be able to be trained and socialized successfully.

His huge size will require that he be trained because when he is indoors he can knock things over and he must be able to respond to you telling him to lie down.

As a large dog, he isn’t suited for tiny homes, as he requires lots of space even though he doesn’t require a lot of exercise. Not only that, he takes his watchdog duties seriously and he is inclined to bark a lot, and in a small place, you’ll be getting constant complaints from the neighbors.

When trained and socialized, your big dog is social, active and loving. He gets on well with children, the elderly and with pets in the home. He isn’t that overly active and will happily make himself at home on your couch and bed.

Health Problems

maremma sheepdog dogThis ancient dog breed is robust and can reach 11 to 13 years of age when cared for properly. Like any other dogs, he can be prone to certain health problems.

One of these is hip dysplasia. Preventing your dog from becoming overweight can work towards preventing these kinds of musculoskeletal issues. Hip dysplasia occurs when your dog’s hip joints don’t develop properly so that the hips partially dislocate.

It is painful for your dog and it can be debilitating, leading to arthritis too and making it difficult for your pet to get around and to get up from lying down. There are a number of treatment options offered by your vet.

great pyrenees dogYour Great Pyrenees is a big dog with an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years. His large size means you will need to look out for typical 'big dog' ailments such as hip dysplasia.

This problem can cause your pet to be in pain and he can also become lame, battling to walk and play and battling to get up after lying down.

Also, look out for bone cancer with your pet and as mentioned previously, bloat, which is a life threatening disease where the stomach of the dog swells up.

Caring The Pet

Exercise:

maremma sheepdog puppiesAs already suggested, this large dog will need space and he will need to be exercised. Apart from long walks in he countryside or in the park or your neighborhood, he will also need other activities that stimulate him mentally and physically.

Grooming:

The thick, all-weather coat of the Maremma will need a thorough bushing at least twice a week to get rid of all those loose hairs. When you are brushing him, look around for signs of ticks and fleas too and run your hands over him to feel for any unusual lumps.

Diet:

The Maremma is a large-breed dog, so before you get a big dog like this, decide whether you have the financial means to feed him and look after him properly. He is going to cost a lot to feed, so think it through first.

He will need to be fed a high-quality commercial dog food which has been specially formulated for a dog of his size. Keep the food of dogs simple. We’re all tempted to feed our dog treats like things such as chocolates, coffee, nuts, onions, grapes and raisins but these can cause havoc with your dog’s stomach.

Stick to simple, nutritious food. Boiled chicken, brown rice or pasta and vegetables such as potatoes, spinach and carrots can do wonders for your pet when you sometimes mix this into his kibble.

Try and mix some raw meat into his diet occasionally. Make sure he always has access to fresh, cool water.

Exercise:

great pyrenees puppiesYour Great Pyrenees isn't going to be a dog leaping around you demanding a game or walk like what you get from some energetic dogs. He certainly doesn't require strenuous exercise but will require a nice, brisk walk every day. Give him some ball or rope games too. He's territorial and likes large grounds to walk around and guard and this constant guarding is a good form of exercise too.

Grooming:

With two layers, the coat of the Great Pyrenees will need to be brushed twice a week to prevent burrs attaching to the fur and to prevent it from matting, It also gets rid of loose hair during shedding.

He tends to drool so it's handy keeping a damp cloth close by just to give his face area a wipe down. Your dog's ears will need to be cleaned with special ear-cleaning lotion and his nails will also need to be trimmed.

Socialization and Training:

Socialize your Great Pyrenees with other dogs and people from a young age. Without proper socialization, this breed can become territorial and possessive of his family, which could lead to aggression. He bonds with his family but tends to be wary of strangers.

Diet:

It is far better to feed your Great Pyrenees smaller meals throughout the day as opposed to 2 large meals a day. A large dog like him can develop bloat from gulping down a large amount of food too quickly.

If you feed your Great Pyrenees commercially manufactured food, make sure it is high in omega 3 and 6 to keep his thick white coat luxurious.

Your dog will need a dog food targeted at a large breed. Remember to include some raw meat as well as cooked chicken, vegetables and brown rice into his kibble and always ensure fresh, cool water is available.

Characteristics

maremma sheepdog dogsThis is a beautiful dog, but large, so don’t make the mistake of wanting a large dog like this for his looks. He will be expensive to feed.

If you have the means to provide a good home for him, he is friendly and good natured, even though he is strong-willed and independent.

Provide him with a good home and you’ll have a most splendid pet and companion.

great pyrenees dogsThe Great Pyrenees is such a calm, independent, serious, well-mannered dog who loves to be around his human family and to please them. He is gentle and knows how to behave well around children, the elderly as well as with any pets in the home.

He makes a wonderful companion and although he loves indoor life as much as outdoor life, he is much happier settling into life in the country or the suburbs as opposed to life in the city and a tiny property.

Give your big white coated pet all the love he thrives on, and you'll enjoy a wonderful relationship with this large, amicable dog.

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