Here in Northern Ontario, Canada people love blueberries and we have them in abundance. Sinatra and Mr. Bean even enjoy them. I had one dog who would sit right in the patch and munch away.
Unfortunately, this year a late frost killed off the blueberry flowers so that in August, when both people and bears go blueberry picking, the crop was very small. The bears were extremely hungry as blueberries are one of their main food choices. As a result, the bears came into the city in large enough numbers that someone saw one nearly every day. Sadly, our Natural Resource Department has been short staffed for close to 10 years and they have reneged their responsibility for the bears. It fell to the local police to kill a number of bears just to keep people safe. This is a choice they made only when the bears seriously endangered people by displaying aggressive behavior like ripping up doors to get into a house.
What does this have to do with dogs? During the time this was all going on with bears digging into garbage right in people’s yard — tearing apart steel garbage containers to get at the bags —someone called the radio station and suggested we bring in some Karelian Bear Dogs to deal with the problem.
A dog willing to chase a bear? Never heard of it. After some research here is the lowdown on this formidable dog.
|STATISTICS||BLACK BEAR||KARELIAN BEAR DOG|
|Ursus americanus||Canis lupus familiaris|
|Height||2-1/2 to 3 feet||21-24 inches|
|Weight||90 to 600 lbs||44.1 to 50.7 lbs|
|Colouring||Black with some brown||Black and white|
|Personality||Solitary animals, though you will see a mother with her cub(s) as we did. The mother abandons cubs when they are 2 years old.||Very social with humans but not other dogs, prone to separation anxiety.|
|Population||Widespread distribution and large population due to admirable ability to adapt.
Smart enough to hibernate in winter.
|Originated in Finland where it is highly regarded for its quick reflexes and fearlessness.
Looks for home with fireplace to past the winter. (kidding)