Tuesday, 07 July 2020 04:26

Myths: My dog ate a bear!

We have read about or seen videos on YouTube of dogs attacking wolves at work and fending off or killing them. But how do shepherd dogs actually prevent a wolf attack? Let us find out more about what we say is "their job".

The truth is that even though they can fend off wild animals, this does not mean that these dogs have the raw power to take on or even dominate a wild animal such as a wolf or bear. If you have read this about any dog breed you should know that this is not true.

The wolf is a wild animal, not domesticated, with one instinct to guide it for its survival. This instinct is how he must hunt and kill to survive. Also, taking into account the strength a wolf has in its jaws (approximately 85 kg / cm2) in contrast to the jaws of a dog that can reach 50 kg per cm2 we understand that the wolf is an animal that is NOT playing when it attacks.

The ability of shepherd dogs to protect a herd lies in their numbers (usually there are 3, 5 or even more dogs protecting a herd) and the reluctance of wild animals to attack when the sheepdogs are there. The predators know that if they are injured they will not be able to hunt and as a result they will not be able to survive, and in view of this risk they usually do not attack.

An advantage that the Greek White Shepherd has in particular against these wild predators camouflage. Their color hides them when they are sitting inside the herd, with the result that the hunters do not detect them in time and panic as soon as they realize their presence.

Should the wolves decide to attack the herd, some of the dogs, the stronger and more courageous will chase the wolves away, and some other dogs will remain scattered throughout the herd to continue protecting it. Most of the dogs that will chase the wolves do not have a high chance to return. That's why we say that they give their lives for their herd (pack).

As for the videos we see on YouTube, you should know that the wolf is an animal that always hunts in a pack and that is where its power as a hunter lies. In all these videos we see lone wolves who are usually the ones who have been expelled from their herd and are usually on the verge of starvation or in poor health and always small in size. This is the only time a wolf will be forced to hunt alone.

Finally we see that the sheepdogs that protect the herd wear a collar with metal spikes, which is like armor for the dog, bearing in mind that the wolf in order to immediately execute a deadly blow to the pray, instinctively tries to bite it in the neck.

Apart from wolves, it is heard that dogs sometimes "fight" with bears. I do not need to explain how much more difficult it would be, as when we talk about an animal that, unlike the wolf (up to 80 kg) weighs from 300 to 600 kg and has the corresponding strength… As I mentioned earlier, these dogs increase the risk of attack for wild predators resulting, most of the time, in the conflict being completely avoided.

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O.F.L.E.T. stands for Greek White Shepherd Friends Club. It was created in 2016 with the purpose of helping the breed improve, educating people on these beautiful Greek dogs and registering it officially in Greece and internationally (FCI).

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