All over Australia these beautiful dogs are being misunderstood or sold through Pets shops as 'similar to Golden Retrievers'.. nothing could be further from the truth. The only similarity is the long coat. Maremma are a very free thinking dog that's history spans back many thousands of years to their origins in Italy. Traditionally the Maremma are flock protectors in the mountains of Italy where they work in partnership with the shepherd to protect the grazing flocks up in the hills, often used in groups or packs and being left as sole protectors to the flock. They are very intelligent dogs and more than capable of identifying a threat to their herd in the absence of the shepherd.
Sadly here in Australia and some other countries, they are being sold as a great domestic guard dog... which they can be, but full disclosure is not often made to prospective owners about their hard wired traits of guarding, which often leads to being misunderstood during their puppy-hood when many people realise they are not able to guide/train them or keep them any longer in a suburban setting. They are very vocal dogs and will bark at anything they perceive as a threat or change in their area, often resulting in Council complaints and removal of such dogs. These dogs then become displaced, and many find themselves in shelters and pounds or sadly on death row.
Maremma bond to their flocks or families, so once removed from them they can shut down and become sad and despondent which results in them becoming withdrawn, they do not jump at the wire fence in the pound full of smiles hoping to find a new home as prospective new owners walk past. More often than not, they huddle in the corner and rarely pass the rehoming 'pinch and poke test'
If these dogs are lucky enough to come to the attention of Maremma Rescue Victoria, Coordinated by Jill Stone & Jodie Cawood, they stand half a chance of finding a new home. Foster carers are a key issue here but with the lack of them, still some dogs are sadly pts.
please go here for further info regarding Maremma Rescue.
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