The Maremmano Abruzzese, or Maremma Sheepdog, is an Italian pastoral breed whose lineage dates back some 2000 years ago - spoken about in ancient Roman literature. They are a dedicated and work-oriented breed that need property as they prefer to be outside with a job to accomplish.
They are natural guardians acting when they sense a threat. They were imported from Italy in the 1970's to guard sheep and goats. Now, they are employed to guard chickens and even property, in particular, vineyards. In fact, in Modern Farmer magazine, these guardians were noted in the article, 5 Reasons Every Winery Needs a Dog.
The Maremma is an old breed, thought to descend from the sheep guardians of the Middle East. Coming to the US from the Maremmano and Abruzzo regions of central Italy, they maintained this lineage by assisting Italian shepherds with protecting sheep from wolves. Once considered two separate breeds, one from either region, the ENCI (the national dog association of Italy) unified them in 1958 to become the Maremmano Abruzzesse of today.
The Pastore Abruzzese, or Shepherd Dog of the Abruzzi, is the longer-bodied, longer-haired. The Pastore Maremmano or Shepherd Dog of the Maremma has the shorter, rougher coat.
Traditionally, the Maremma worked under the shepherd's supervision during the day and remained unattended with flocks at night in smaller enclosures. Today, they continue to fulfill this task, moving beyond their Italian borders to help protect all types of livestock in Australia, the United States, and Canada - even penguins! They are an amazing animal dedicating their life to farm and family. This is the Maremma!
pictured above -
Ennio, the rougher coated Pastore Maremmano