Tag Archives: france

Hot Dog! (06/12)

have you ever seen one of these?

Great Pyrenees

Great Pyrenees

I had not, but I met one named Mookie (I think I had an ewok with the same name).

Here is some info on the breed:

The Great Pyrenees, also known as Pyrenean Mountain Dog, is a very old breed, and has been used for millennia by the shepherds which includes Basque people, who inhabit parts of the region in and around the Pyrenees Mountains of southern France and northern Spain. More recently, the breed served as the official dog of the royal French court (whose prominence began circa the Middle Ages, and lasted until the middle of the nineteenth century). During World War II the dogs were used to haul artillery over the Pyrenean Mountain range to and from Spain and France. They are related to several other large white European livestock guardian dogs (LGD), including the Italian Maremma Sheepdog, Kuvasz (Hungary), Akbash Dog (Turkey) and Polish Tatra or Polski Owczarek Podhalański.


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Don’t Call it a Comeback (03/29)

We've been here for years, there are just more of us now

We've been here for years, there are just more of us now!

The Poitou comes from the Equus asinus species and is – basically – a donkey with dreadlocks.    The Poitou was bred exclusively to be used in the breeding of mules (one of the traditional activities of the region) and as such was exported throughout the world in numbers.

However, the success story of the Poitou was destined not to last.  With the advent of industry and mechanized farming, the call for the Poitou declined and as demand fell, so did the numbers of this amazing looking beast.

In 1977 a survey revealed that there were only twelve stallions (the locals call them baudets) and thirteen mares (likewise, known as anesses) left.

Local authorities, keen to retain this unique but vestigial remnant of local history, together with the French National Parks, breeders and scientists, joined together to create a studbook.

Thanks to this program there are now over one hundred Poitous of each gender in their native region alive and well and ready to breed some more.  Worldwide there are around a thousand.

read full story.

Ah…it’s nice to hear a story with a happy ending ever now and then, isn’t it?

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