Thursday, August 25, 2011
Pyrs are Prone to Digging... My Arm!
My Cahota will jump on the sofa and do this for ten minutes, to say the least. Paw.. paw.. "Yes, Coatsy, we know you're there. Thank you." He will paw at the other dogs heads, he will paw anything. In talking with other Pyr owners, the same! The paw.. paw.. paw.. I won't discuss how to get them to stop doing this, as of course there are ways to train it out (I suppose.. stubborn Pyr!) however I've resigned this is a Pyr thing, and leave it at that.
Back in the adoption event days, you'd see 2 things. The inevitable "lean" against whichever human made themselves available, and then the "paw". "Oh! He likes me!". Yeah.. I'm sure he does. However, I think I'd be quicker to teach my Pyr to drive my car than to stop leaning and pawing! We've talked in groups about why we think this is!
Clearly it's affection based. I doubt anyone would disagree with that. Why don't they ever stop? I theorized that perhaps pawing was a benefit as a lifestock guardian. In that capacity, the dogs hang out with their sheep and follow them wherever they go. They inevitably "love" them, and protect them from those who approach. Did the pawing come about as a method to wake and/or encourage sleepy sheep to move along? "It's time to go", the sheep thought.. and there is your Pyr.. making sure even the laziest of sheep get up and move along. Perhaps they pawed away at them.. "wake up! time to go! I love you!"
As with most things common across a breed, there is a reason. This is probably the only thing I could think of! Of course, there is the obvious suggestion that it is merely a ploy for more attention; but then why do all Pyrs seem to do it? I have not experienced this degree of "pawing" from any other breed!
At the end of the day, we've taught one of our Pyrs to just 'lay down' and snuggle.. and stop trying to dig for gold in my arm. He still paws at first, but then we pat the sofa and he finally relents. I want him to tell me why he does it, but alas he insists it is a Great Pyrenees secret of which he cannot divulge!