Anonymous asked in PetsDogs · 1 decade ago

Does/did anybody grow up on a farm and have one of these dogs?

Great Pyrenees, Rottweiler, Bernese Mountain, Greater Swiss, St. Bernard, German Shepherd, or any other big working dog like a mastiff. Wut was/were ur dog's job(s)? I'm looking for a dog that can guard livestock, watch and guard my house and property, and large enough to pull cart, wagons, sled,etc. Does any of these dogs herd. Please dont give me any dog from the herding group.


Please tell me about these dogs and what they are capable of

16 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The Bernese Mountain dog is definitely not used for herding. They are great for pulling, companionship, and protection though. I used to have each of the breeds that you mentioned and the best all-around farm dog I've ever owned was a Great Pyrenees. He was great at guarding, large enough to pull a cart (think he enjoyed it), and was a great at protecting the animals (they usually are most aggressive towards other canines). My second choice for farm work would be a Greater Swiss Mountain dog, but they are very clingy and want to be around people all the time. The GP is more independent. German Shepherds are too high strung. Mastiffs aren't good for much except guarding and drafting. Rottis are okay except they are prone to heat exhaustion and don't have the stamina. So there you have it, my vote goes for the Great Pyrenees.

  • 1 decade ago

    Rottweilers were, originally, a drafting animal. Mastiffs were also used for drafting, as well as guardians. In fact, the Mastiff is an ancient breed, used by Roman soldiers during their wars. Both breeds are still guards, just as they were a hundred years ago and longer. Neither are particularly good at herding, although, you might be able to train them to watch the animals. The American Indians who lived on the Great Plains also used drafting dogs, but those have unfortunatly died out. Then there are the Huskies, but those are cold weather dogs, not really good for pulling in the heat--and they make terrible guard dogs.

    ("drafting" means: pulling a cart or other device)

  • 1 decade ago

    We have kept Great Pyrenees and I know several other people who do as well. They are not herding dogs in the sense that border collies are. They stay with their "family", but do not guide it. For instance, our neighbors have a small herd of arabian horses and a male g.p. to protect them (the foals) from coyotes. The dog just follows the herd wherever it goes--he does not make the horses go to any particular place. Our dog protected all of the animals on the farm, including chickens. They will guard their home and family from anything. However, I have no idea if they will pull carts or anything like that.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    We have owned 5 Great Pyrennes in the past and they would herd as well as guard. They have super natural instincts if well bred. I had one pup that I got when she was 5 weeks old due to the mother being run over and killed by a car. From day 1, she knew what her job was and did it. We had goats. The neighboring farm had goats too as well as cows and she would spend part of the day looking after our gotas and the other half at their farm watching after the neighbor's animals. Mainly she would find a shady spot along the fenceline where she could watch both herds. She had the best instincts of any guardian or herding dog I have ever seen or owned. I am sure they could be taught to pull a cart too. You might want a male for that as they are usually bigger. I know the Bermese Mountain dogs are supposed to be great dogs too for this but I have personally never owned one.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    I have a st. bernard/husky mix and i use to have a purebred st. bernard. The purebred one use to pull and sled in the winter and a small cart in the summer. He loved it. He never herded my horses. I don't approve of dogs herding horses. Way too dangerous for the horses and the dog. Others would disagree, but to each their own. That is what makes the world go round =) Any of the dogs, Except the Rottweiler and the German Shepherd, would be great for what you are looking for. Best wishes =)

    Source(s): my own experience =)
  • motroo
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    I have owned a Great Pyrenees and LOVED HER! she was great around other animals, and my children. She was very protective, and barked at everything that came close. My friend has one on a farm, and wouldn't choose any other dog to guard the chickens and goats, but again there could be a skunk across the land and she'll be barking at it. These are extremely laid back, and not at all aggressive (unless they really have to be)They are big enough to do manual labor on a farm. Bernese Mountain dogs are great dogs also, They are a little more aggressive,Their size alone is intimidating. I don't think that I would want one around other animals unless you started with a pup. They could very easily pull carts and wagons, and protect your property. Along with being very gentle with children.

  • 1 decade ago

    I can't speak for the other breeds, but I know Saint Bernards aren't really supposed to have the personality for guarding. Not to say they aren't out there, but I remember reading on a breed club website that if someone broke into your house, a Saint would be more likely to lead them to the family silver than be hostile, and that that's the way a responsible breeder breeds their dogs. I worked on a dairy farm that raised Saint Bernards, and they weren't even slightly protective. Even before they were officially introduced to me, I was able to go in the house to use the bathroom without even a bark from the dogs. I own 2 Saint Bernards, and my male will bark when someone comes in the yard, but he's never growled at anyone or anything- not even the cat we used to have. My female was protective of me while I was pregnant, and I'm currently having some dog aggression issues with her, but she doesn't even bark when strange people/vehicles come in the yard.

    My female did do pretty well in obedience class, and you might be able to train one to do what you want, but generally guarding isn't supposed to be in a Saint Bernard's personality naturally.

    Source(s): -Saint Bernard owner/obsessor LOL
  • 1 decade ago

    We had a shepard husky mix at one point. He was an awesome dog. He was pretty much just a pet, but no one came in our house that wasn't supposed to. My grandpa learned his lesson about scaring my sister and I when we were walking back from the barn one night too. He didn't get bit, but he sure thought he was going to :)

    Rottweilers can be trained to herd and pull a cart. If trained correctly they make great pets and are usually very loyal and protective of their families. I would suggest doing research on the breeds that you listed to see what breed temperment and agility would best suit your needs. Good luck.

  • 1 decade ago

    I had a female German Shepherd once that was great about guarding. She had a totally different bark if a PERSON came around, another sound when a dog came around, a different sound when a horse got out and even different when the geese got in the road. She always managed to chase everything back to where it belonged.

    I had Saints for a while...just too darn hot for them here. They had a time breathing in the summer time.

    I also have had Aussies and they were great with the horses.

  • 1 decade ago

    I did we used to have 2 rottis and a great dane akita mix, and 1 english mastiff. My mom liked the bigger dogs because they get attached to the animals and their owners. Our rottis marlow and Shiloh were always out back with the other animals (goats, sheeps) our dane mix didn't do so good with the livestock but was fine with all the poultry birds ( we had chicken and roosters, and pigeons and also pet birds) and he was very VERY protective of the property and his family but i cant say all danes or dane mixes are like that.And our Mastiff well he was too loving to everyone and anything but he was great for working. I used to build a lot of aviary's and he was good for like you said pulling small wagons of supplies for us. Hope that helps

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.