This is Nico, a rescue Akbash male pup about 7 months old. He came from a breeder in Montana who found themselves overwhelmed with puppies.
Nico has food guarding issues with his partner, Gio but outside of feeding times is very playful. He is doing well with his chicken-tending training sessions, though will chase a delectably fluttering hen when they accidentally fly into his pen.
A work in progress.
This is Diamond Gio, or ‘Gio’ for short. Not that it matters what we call him, as he is still learning what it means to come to his name. Gio is a purebred Maremma Sheepdog from Black Alder Ranch in Idaho and he is also about 8 months old.
Maremmas have been bred and used in Italy for hundreds of years to live in and among the sheep herds with little direction needed from the shepherds. They are close patrollers, meaning they prefer to stay with their charges rather than range farther out like the Akbash or Anatolian Shepherds. As he does not have sheep to guard yet, Gio is learning to be calm around chickens, to learn the property perimeter and get used to the occasional thunderstorms we have. He is awfully fluffy and is supposed to be the whitest of white, though during rainy days he is more of a mud color. On purpose.