We had the opportunity to go to our animal shelter (Heart of the Valley
) this past week to talk about guard dogs
to a summer camp group. While the Anatolians usual make a good impact with people, I wasn't sure how they wanted us to keep twenty 6 to 12 year olds entertained for an hour.
We arrived and there was a large "ooh!" that whispered throughout the room. We let Cookie and Griz off of their leashes and they happily snuggled into the kids laps, laying on the floor mats with them as we began the history of the breed, why we have these dogs and what makes them different from other canines.
The kids rubbed and scratched the dogs as they asked many thoughtful, well thought out questions. They were interested in something they had not seen before (Well, many had met Grizzly at various events we went to around town). Perhaps because they were from Montana and used to more of farm-ranch setting, but they were very intuned to when Cookie got up and needed some space or Griz made his way to greet every kid and adult in the room.
Yes, they are guard dogs and we have purposely not overly socialized them with other dogs. No other animals were in the room or in sight at our location. When one would walk by, both would perk up but just watch through the glass windows. Anatolians are smart enough to know when to turn it on or off. I trust this breed as much as I could trust any dog. And I am very glad they are part of our alpaca family.