Dana Hoven got her dog Gwendolyne six years ago in Spokane. Gwenny, as she is called, is a South African Boerboel breed and weighs 150 pounds. That's large enough to fill the role they were bred for as protectors of the family farm in Africa.
Pet of the week: Gwendolyne is a great guard
Dana Hoven got her dog Gwendolyne six years ago and as you can see, Gwendolyne makes an impression. She's a large dog, a South African Boerboel, who came from Moon Mountain Ranch in Spokane, WA.
Hoven picked her out online at first but, "She was actually promised to somebody else, but we went out to visit because I didn't understand how the dog could measure so small but then you look at the pictures and they are so big, so when we went out to visit, she was suddenly available."
Gwendolyne weighed 45 pounds, at the age of 3 months when she came to live with Hoven but these are big dogs and weighs 150 pounds now.
"Gwenny eats all natural food because she has a horrible corn allergy," Hoven explained, getting the food at Petco.
These dogs, according to Hoven, were bred to guard homesteads in South Africa. "They are considered the 'Farmer's Dog' and they were sent out with the children so the female stays with the child when they take the sheep out and the male will patrol the perimeter. That's where their protectiveness comes from. They have been known to take on lions and whoever they need to take on to protect the children. She's very child oriented and she's always been super sweet and gentle with the kids."
"Gwenny is great because she doesn't chase anything. No birds, no squirrels, none of that. The only thing she does is make sure she's between you and me, and she's done that very effectively. She's very protective, and she's very sweet and great with children."
There are no dog toys in the house because Gwendolyne won't fetch and doesn't need them.
Her best friend is a local sheepdog because they are tall enough to play.
Hoven talked about Gwendolyne's early days. "She grew up with an orange tabby cat and he would like to jump out from behind corners at her and scare her. So she gets a little nervous around cats because she's pretty sure they're going to bonk her on the nose. Yes, she was kept in line by a 13 pound cat."
It's an easy life for this dog because as Hoven explained, "She gets up when we get up and has breakfast then takes a long nap, then goes for a walk, then takes another long nap, then welcomes everyone from school, and then takes another long nap then squeezes her way on to the couch for the evening."
How to nominate your pet for Pet of the Week:
Want to nominate your pet for Pet of the Week? Stop by the VCA West Seattle Animal Hospital at 5261 California Ave. S.W. and just ask for a form. A nomination is not a guarantee of appearance and your name and photo may appear in our newspaper and online.
Photos may or may not be used and our "Pet Reporter" may be in touch with you to arrange to take a photo. Pets nominated will be chosen on the basis of uniqueness of the pet and the quality of the story and information submitted.