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Dogs

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Is it really impossible to train dogs away from chickens once they have killed/eaten one?

I've got a Catahoula mix and a Boston terrier
I was hoping the Catahoula could become a guard for the chickens

Is this impossible now?
post #2 of 9
In my experiance yes. I have two mutts that have bird dog in them and even after training them they killed hens. I went as far as to hit them and chase with with one of their kills after 11dead hens they have killed a total of 12. The only thing that keeps my flock safe from our dogs is a fence and clipping the hens wings so they dont fly over the fence and in to the dogs yard. I have a friend who has a collie and she learned after him using a shock collar not to mess with the birds(i am not a fan but i did get overly deperate after hitting them and yeah that still didnt work). For me with the breed they are its not possible to retrain them, a week ago they caught a dove mid air and killed it so they are great hunters 😐 so what might work for non hunting dogs might not work for others. I also had a husky and he would kill chickens if he got out i never found were the chickens were coming from to replace them. But some dogs will be dogs just remember that no matter how hard you try they can never be trusted alone after killing.
post #3 of 9

I don't believe it's impossible. There are many people on BYC who have had dogs kill a chicken and still trained them to leave them alone. It's not the "taste of blood" that keeps them coming back. For some, it's the prey drive in the dog. Some breeds have a higher prey drive than others. For some, it's a lack of training and owners who are unable or unwilling to put in the time to train their dogs. There is no simple answer here. As Ridgerunner always says, "You're dealing with a living animal." There are no guarantees. How old are your dogs? If they're pups, I think the younger they are when you start training, the better. If they're adults, it may take a little longer, but I don't think they're a lost cause. It seems that many people will get chickens, let the dogs out and think that everyone will automatically live in harmony. Nope. Not gonna happen. Those dogs need to know that the chickens are now part of their territory and need to leave them alone. Do some research. Look up user "Centrarchid". He's trained a lot of dogs and has shared his experiences with a few of them. Currently he's got a thread on the "Managing Your Flock" section about his new pup, Ben. There is some interesting reading there.

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1008645/english-shepherd-as-poultry-guardian

Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

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Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

Reply
post #4 of 9
It takes a lot of work but can be done and takes a long time before the dog can be trusted to be left alone with them if ever. I use a shock collar on my wirehair and it works if done properly but she knows when she isn't wearing that collar, so if she is wearing the collar and I am nearby she is OK,I will probably never trust her enough to leave her alone with them. She does have an extremely strong hunt instinct for all small animals especially birds
Edited by blucoondawg - 11/17/15 at 6:35pm
post #5 of 9
My father in law has a solution he says is fool proof but it is pretty gruesome. I have never needed to try it but he swears that if you tie a dead bird to the dogs neck and let the bird rot the dog will become so disgusted with the smell he will never touch a bird again. But like I said I have never tried itm
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by OrganicFarmWife View Post

My father in law has a solution he says is fool proof but it is pretty gruesome. I have never needed to try it but he swears that if you tie a dead bird to the dogs neck and let the bird rot the dog will become so disgusted with the smell he will never touch a bird again. But like I said I have never tried itm
I've heard this also
I only have one carcass, so it's tied to my Catahoula right now

I have her and my Boston crated together
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by comptonkids View Post

I've heard this also
I only have one carcass, so it's tied to my Catahoula right now

I have her and my Boston crated together
Well keep us updated. I would love to know how it works.
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by OrganicFarmWife View Post

Well keep us updated. I would love to know how it works.
I will smile.png I hope it works
I need the chickens, but I love the dogs
post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by comptonkids View Post

I will smile.png I hope it works
I need the chickens, but I love the dogs
I hear you. I got lucky with my old Australian Shepherd mutt. She will happily eat a dead chicken but never bothers the live ones. She is getting up there though and I know I will soon need to replace her. we are thinking we want a puppy so everything else can beat it up and teach the puppy to fear the smaller animals.
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