Livestock Guardian Dogs
We consider ourselves very fortunate to have Anatolian Shepherd Dogs working as livestock guardians at Marble Peaks Ranch. Anatolian Shepherd Dogs are highly intelligent, constantly vigilant, and fiercely protective of their livestock and their property. Our Anatolians live with our Corriedale sheep 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. They guide the sheep out to pasture in the morning, watch over them as they graze, chase off predators, and lead them back to the barn at night. Livestock guardian dogs are a "predator friendly" form of livestock protection, because their presence deters predators from entering our pastures. We observe black bears, mountain lions, bobcats, and coyotes on other sections of our land and on neighboring ranches but not within our fences where the Anatolians Shepherds preside.
While there are a number of livestock guardian breeds, we consider the Anatolian Shepherd Dog to be the ideal breed. First and foremost, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog is still in active use as a flock guardian breed in its home country of Turkey. Import dogs from proven working bloodlines are available to enhance the genetic diversity of the breed in the United States. Second, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog has a stature both large and powerful enough to confront the most formidable predators (e.g., wolves, bears, and mountain lions), and yet is agile enough to cover long distances rapidly. Third, the Anatolian's coat is short and adapted to high summer temperatures, but it develops a dense undercoat for insulation in cold winter climates. For more information about the breed, visit Anatolian Shepherd Dogs International.
Below are photos of Shahane's daughter, Tanyeri. In Turkish "Tanyeri" translates as "daybreak." From her first contact with sheep, Tanyeri has displayed admirable gentleness and concern for lamb and ewes. She was trustworthy as the solo guardian of her own lamb flock at eight months old. Tanyeri will sit patiently and watch over ewes during lambing.