Jeff Fuentes Gleghorn
A Great Pyrenees dog named Casper returned home after protecting his owner’s sheep from at least eight coyotes in Georgia. Owner John Wierwiller told Atlanta’s WAGA-TV that Casper fought the coyote pack for over half an hour, killing eight of the would-be sheep thieves. Casper was also wounded in the fight, and he ran off after it was over. Two days later the Pyrenees returned injured, missing some skin and part of his tail.
Great Pyrenees are a type of dog originally from the Pyrenees mountain range in France. According to the American Kennel Club, they are large dogs, often over 100 pounds, and were bred to stop “sheep-stealing wolves and other predators” in the mountains. As Casper shows, they are still excellent sheep guards today, but they can also be placid, friendly family pets. But buyer beware: the Great Pyrenees was bred to be an intelligent, independent dog, and does not take to training well. They are known for being stubborn and growing bored of obedience training. Their guard dog roots have also left them with a strong instinct to bark.
Casper himself is being cared for by Wierwiller. The LifeLine Animal Project has also raised over $15,000 to cover the sheepdogs hospital bills, so he may be back with the sheep he risked his life to protect in the future.