We know the breed existed in relative isolation in the Pyrenees Mountains for thousands of years. Historically, they were the property of the Mountain Shepherds. They guarded the sheep and the shepherds from the mountain bears and wolves that were prevalent on the day. To say the breed is French is possibly an oversimplification. The breed is surely Pyrenean. The Basque being one of the traditional Shepherds, the breed is frequently associated with these unique people. The Basque were likely the indigenous people in the region when the Pyr or his immediate ancestor(s) arrived to the area. Indeed the Basque brought the use the breed in the "New World" and tell legendary stories about the breed. So it can be easily assumed that there was a long history of association back in the "Homeland". There is little, if any, real evidence of this Basque association that predates World War I. You see, the written form of the Basque language is a modern innovation, so no written record of the Breeds association with the Basque seems to be in existance relative the Basque. How the breed got to the Pyrenees is some subject of speculation and conjecture and more than this brief overview will delve. Certainly the French have historically been the protector and guardian of the breed. On at least two occasions in the 20th century they virtually rescued the breed from extinction and waged a valiant campaign to safeguard the original qualities of the breed. They did this through two world wars and many difficult times. So it seems fair to allow them to make this claim. As we develop this offering of information to the world, we will attempt to develop as accurately as possible the known history of the development of the human involvement with this really magnificent dog of the mountain.
Monsieur Théodore Dretzen- Zaïela
Champion Porthos and President Fallières