Pesharim - Granpappy
I'm gonna be a Granpappy of grandpuppies.
My Great Dane bitch is getting ready to litter. This will be the third generation of the same family of dogs to inhabit my household and be part of my family. The first girl dog we had, Kara, a Saint Dane (combination Great Dane and Saint Bernard) was the bitch of the sire of this generation. She was a great dog and favored a Great Dane in appearance except she was light brown in coloring. She was extremely tall and fast and loved running the deer, but unfortunately she was shot by a hunter early one morning. We're still not sure if she was mistaken for a doe or just shot out of spite but luckily she as hit dead square in the chest by a high caliber round, and so she only rolled once (given the evidence of where I found her on the ground) and died quickly. Still, it tore me up for awhile. She was a great gal.
Luckily she had lived long enough to litter once and we kept some of that litter of ten, the rest we sold.
The combination cross breed of Great Dane and Saint Bernard is really beautiful and most of the time comes out looking one of two ways; Like a Great Dane in figure with a slim, tall and lithe body, as well as like a Great Dane in snout and face but with either short of long hair and of various colors (I call this variation the Saint Dane), or looking and colored and built like a Saint Bernard but with the face and snout of a Great Dane (I call this variation the Great Bernard). The Great Bernard is really beautiful cause you get all of the strength and power and intelligence of the Saint Bernard without the ugly pug nose.
We kept two of the Great Bernards from Kara's litter and both were very hardy and tough, large, powerful, and fast, but George, one of my Great Bernards was bitten either by a copperhead or cotton mouth or got into a nest of snakes at the river. He was long haired and by the time we figured out what had happened to him we had to get the horse doctor to come out and put him down. God, that was awful. I sure was attached to that dog and he was one helluvah good dog. I mean one of the best I've ever even heard tale of. He was amazing. And tough as new fired pig iron.
Our other Great Bernard, who looks just like a Saint Bernard, except for the fact that he has a long snout and in the face looks like a Great Dane (a truly beautiful animal) lived. He was bitten by a snake (or a couple) once too but we had the horse doctor operate on him cause we found it on his paw and although he lost about 30% of the paw initially to necrotic tissue and snake toxins he was young and tough and we nursed him for about two months back to full health. So he has lived thankfully and now we have a black as midnight Great Dane bitch who we have mated him with to produce a new litter of Great Bernards and Saint Danes.
I'm really looking forward to this litter as it will be our third generation of pups from the same family and I can't say enough good about these new breeds. They are massive, powerful, fast, good hunters (you wouldn't know it from the size but they are excellent squirrel dogs), loyal, extremely intelligent, make incredibly good watchdogs and are fearless (more about that in my newsletter) and are good with kids. My Great Bernards even attacked an armed policeman because he thought the policeman was an attacker because the agent came out to the house while I wasn't around and my dogs thought he was going to attack my girls. The agent was dressed in all black SWAT/Assault gear and since I personally trained by dogs to attack any armed intruder (especially in black - that's how I dressed when I trained them) who comes near my wife or daughters while I'm not around both my dogs went for the cop. The cop wasn't hurt, he got back to his cruiser in time with only a fang scrape to the elbow, and although I didn't like the fact that they had attacked an agent secretly I was so proud I could have popped. It didn't even take a command, my dogs just saw the cop, saw he was armed and approaching my girls and just automatically drove him off.
The cop had just come to the house to talk to me about a case involving one of my neighbors and although he was shaken up and told me my dogs scared the crap out of him, he also said those were the two best guard dogs he's ever seen. Said they were so fast and quiet that he would have never noticed them until he was surrounded had my daughters not tried to call them back. I taught my dogs not to bark on the attack until right up on someone (so as not to give away their position) and then bark and growl and nip and snipe like crazy to drive off any intruder. I also trained them to take down the intruder if they have to, especially an armed one. They sure did me proud. After the agent caught his breath and calmed down we both had a laugh about it, though he did have to undergo rabies treatments as a precaution (you have to undergo rabies treatments if you're bitten on duty regardless, even though neither of my dogs had it) and you could tell he was still wary of my dogs. I just glad he never drew and took to shooting. I shoot around my dogs all of the time but neither one ever liked it, and I'm also glad he didn't shoot either of them out of fear. I guess they took him so quickly and by surprise that all he could think of to do was run. So as far as a watchdog you can't beat the breed, and I'm absolutely certain either one of my dogs, or both, would have given their lives to save my daughters. You can't beat that as far as loyalty goes.
As far as I know I'm one of the first people to ever breed these two kinds of dogs, the Great Bernard and Saint Dane. And I'm really looking forward to seeing what my bitch will produce. She's extremely tall, in great shape, and is extremely intelligent. So far I've always used a male Great Bernard and a female Saint Dane or Great Dane as the bitch. I've never tried breeding a Great Dane sire and a Saint Bernard bitch, but that was Kara's lineage, her mother was Saint Bernard and her father Great Dane.
I highly recommend the breed(s) and intend to keep breeding future generations from the same family and stock. By the time my children grow up I'll be able to pass on a pup or two to their children as well.
The only real problems are feeding, both breeds eat a huge amount (but I don't mind that, I like to see healthy appetites and strong and intelligent creatures) and they need a lot of room (but since we have a large estate, we're set in that regard as well) to run and hunt and get plenty of exercise, and adolescent chewing. I believe they could chew through a good size oak, no problem, if they ever took a mind to it. Otherwise the only problems are fairly short lifespan (about 9 to 12 years) and because of the huge size and mass, in later life I expect hip, joint, and bone problems. But I also intend to experiment with improving the breed to create dogs with longer lifespans and I've been experimenting since they were all pups with vitamins, diet, nutrition, and supplements to ward off any hip problems.
Overall I'm extremely proud of my dogs and am really looking forward to this new litter.
They should be a mess of really beautiful brutes. If they are as strong, intelligent, and capable as their parents then they'll also do me proud.
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