Hi everyone! My 8 ducks have happily had the yard to themselves the whole time I've had them. I just added a new puppy to the family, and I am looking for suggestions of ways for them to happily live together. The dog is a maltese, yorkie mix, so it is small (will be 6 lbs full grown). I specifically avoided getting a dog bigger than the ducks, or one that is of a hunting breed - but I think all terrier derived breeds retain some hunting traits. When I take the puppy outside to go potty, I keep it on the leash. If he is on the leash, the ducks are fine, and will come within a few feet of us to get a look. The problem is - if he is let off the leash, he thinks it is his job to put the ducks in the pond. He will walk up to each one until they turn around and hop in. Most of the time, he is just walking calmly to them, and guiding them in - but other times, he is quite rowdy about it, and I'm afraid one of the ducks will get injured trying to get away from him.
My ducks have free roam of the yard, and they were here first - but I do want the dog to be able to run around the yard too. He is an inside pet, and will never be allowed to be outside unsupervised. As long as the ducks are in the pond, he doesn't even care about them. If they get out, he puts them back in. I have a few ducks that don't like the pond, they would rather be in the stream. I don't want to disrupt their routine.
Have you successfully trained your dogs to be near your ducks without chasing? Should I put them in their house before the dog runs free? Will everything calm down when the newness wears off - or will it get worse?
He has never been aggressive with the ducks - I will not tolerate that. Not growling or barking - but happily putting them where he thinks they belong.