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breaking dogs from killing chickens/tying dead bird to neck?

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 

I'm sorry if someone has already posted the same problem, but I've looked and couldn't find an answer to my specific question. Okay, so I have two 3 yr. old labs and both have a huge prey drive, which of course is a problem. They keep other chicken predators from coming near our chickens, but if they were to come in contact with one of our chickens, they would rip it apart.sad They have both killed a chicken before, and I think my only option would be that if they were to kill again I would get the bird and tie it to their necks and separate them from one another for a week or two. Is this method effective? Also, after researching on this topic I found a video where a woman did this and was charged for animal cruelty. Is it cruel to do this? I would think it would just teach them to dislike the idea of attacking a chicken. I really love my dogs and would not want to treat them cruelly, but they have both have killed and this seems to be an effective method for that. Even though they don't realize it, they keep away other predators, but they sometimes become predators themselves. Please know that I don't mean any harm to my dogs or chickens and would just like some advice. Any answers are appreciated.


Edited by Zaxby's2 - 4/22/11 at 12:56pm

Owner of 2 labs , 2 RIR hens, 2 BOs, a polish, a dominique, an EE, a frizzle, and a RIR rooster. Some how manage to not get tired of them.

Life is tough. Life is tougher if you're stupid.

Smile, Jesus loves you!   

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Owner of 2 labs , 2 RIR hens, 2 BOs, a polish, a dominique, an EE, a frizzle, and a RIR rooster. Some how manage to not get tired of them.

Life is tough. Life is tougher if you're stupid.

Smile, Jesus loves you!   

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post #2 of 41

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=489253

This
one talked about their similar problem.  The tying dead birds thing was also discussed.

I have one dog and nine chickens, AND MY ORDER FROM MCMURRAY HAS ARRIVED!!!!!!
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I have one dog and nine chickens, AND MY ORDER FROM MCMURRAY HAS ARRIVED!!!!!!
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post #3 of 41

My friend did that and did not change any habit of the dog.  I would have someone hold the dog on a leash, make them sit, and you hold a chicken and repeat NO, NO, and slowly bring the chicken to the dog. If he gets up make him sit again. Do this until he can sit there with out wanting to get the chicken. If he is obsesed have the handler make a sound and a poke to take his mind off of the chicken. My boxer kills opossum and skunks but won't touch the chickens.

post #4 of 41

In-laws tied a chicken killed by their dog (lab mix of some sort) around the neck until no one could stand the stench anymore.  They took it off.  The dog killed another chicken within 30 minutes.

post #5 of 41

Dog are not bothered by the stench of a rotting animal.  Most dogs will happily roll in anything dead they find!  So how people thinks that will deter a dog is beyond me.  It's kind of like tying candy around a kid's neck and thinking it will make a kid not like candy anymore.

Blue Lace Red Wyandottes and Delaware Chickens.  Barbados Blackbelly Sheep and Katahdin Sheep
Several loyal dog and one VERY patient and understanding husband.
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Blue Lace Red Wyandottes and Delaware Chickens.  Barbados Blackbelly Sheep and Katahdin Sheep
Several loyal dog and one VERY patient and understanding husband.
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post #6 of 41

While I personally would not want to see a dead chicken tied to my dogs neck.  (Plus my dogs are mainly indoors and the outdoor temps are reaching near 100.  Talk about a smelly bird!!)  I don't know if I would call it "Cruel" but I'm SURE some people would see it that way.  When I was a little kid our doberman killed my mom's favorite rooster.  She tied it around his neck for a few days.  After that he NEVER looked at a chicken wrong again.  He actually would sleep with the chickens and let them climb on him. 

Now all grown up and I have my own chickens.  I also have 4 dogs.  One of which is a German Shepard.  I was worried because birds have always been her "weak spot."  She was 7 years old when I introduced her to her first chickens.  But with proper training and supervision she had never tried to hurt one.  I don't know if I would leave her alone unsupervised though.  My bigger problem is my newest rescued smaller dogs.  They are 5 years old and have had NO training before coming to me. (Not to mention they are spaniels so they have a high drive to chase) Before letting them near the chickens I made sure to train them the "leave it" command.  Easy to train with a treat placed in front of them.  Once they understood that I slowly let them interact with the chickens.  A few times they started to chase and seemed confused about "leave it"( since we had been practicing with treats not moving targets).  When they would go to chase I would use my universal loud verbal "AHAH" correction to correct them. (They understand this command to mean "NO")  It's been a few weeks now and they don't seem interested in the chickens anymore.  I  take them out with me 3 times a day to feed, water and care for the chickens.

It my personal belief that the dogs needs the correction while they are "in the act" of chasing or attacking.  If you correct AFTER the fact I do not believe it to be as successful.  The moment your dog gets the "look" that they are about to chase you need to correct at THAT moment.  Don't leave your dog unsupervised for a split second with the chickens while they are in training.  Always praise your dog when they are "ignoring" the chickens.  And a quick correction the MOMENT they look at them with the "look"

Also you might find it helpful to work with 1 dog at a time.  When you put both dogs together you will have a much harder time.  Plus working with them separately you might notice one is the "leader" and one is the "follower"  Once you have both working well around the chickens alone then you can try to put both together.

Good luck!

post #7 of 41

I am so sorry for the loss. Yet your question makes me laugh at myself all over again. I heard the same thing many times. So, whats this old man do? I tried it. Great idea I say to myself! With some gause, duct tape and the available chicken, I worked it out. Dog loved it. ya know, it was a game. Next day, not so much fun. (Sounds like I'm winning right?) Third day, defcon 3. The smell had gotten to the point where I simply couldn't bring myself to be in the same yard as the dog. Moving on to day 4, the dog is now in heaven with the smell the rolling and me chasing her with a water hose. Fast forward to day 10ish. Dad whupped me good. Wash that &%$#@! dog boy. I asked if he could just whoope me again instead, and YES he was happy to do so. NOW GET THAT DOG WASHED!!!!!!!!!!  To make a short story shorter, dog got washed, I couldn't eat for about the same amount of time I couldn't sit down, dog wanted to do it again, Dad tells everyone that story, Mom thought I had brain damage from birth and I have never lived it down. If you want my advise, I would say....................................................................DO IT!
It won't work but it is funny as all get out.
AWWW. sorry don't really do it. (By the way, that's a true story)old

Nothing very very good, or very very bad, last very very long.
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Nothing very very good, or very very bad, last very very long.
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post #8 of 41

A good fence is a great answer to this problem. I have 5 dogs one a beagle mix with a high prey drive he is fine with the chickens. My son got a husky she has killed 2 chickens and 5 chicks, she will never be outside unsupervised again. I don't think she will ever be safe with the chickens. so when they are out she is locked in the house. When she is out the chickens are locked in their run. This way every one is happy and safe. I do work with her on obedience and submissive training but I also know that she won't ever be safe around the chickens.

a very loving and patient  husband  4 kids 2 daughter 2 sons 2 granddaughters 6 dogs, 6 cats, 1 ferret,
3 bantams 2 Plymouth barred rock. 2  buffs 1 Red star sex links , 1 black star sex links, 2 Australops, 1 Very sweet bantam rooster. 2 barnyard mix hens                                           
the love child story. http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.ph...
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a very loving and patient  husband  4 kids 2 daughter 2 sons 2 granddaughters 6 dogs, 6 cats, 1 ferret,
3 bantams 2 Plymouth barred rock. 2  buffs 1 Red star sex links , 1 black star sex links, 2 Australops, 1 Very sweet bantam rooster. 2 barnyard mix hens                                           
the love child story. http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.ph...
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post #9 of 41

Doesn't work, believe me.  It's like a snack on a string.  roll

One Loving husband, three boys, one girl...and a Full coop!
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One Loving husband, three boys, one girl...and a Full coop!
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post #10 of 41

Many years ago we had a collie mix who would kill my chickens just for fun. We tried everything from hot peppers and hot sauce on and in the birds he killed and he happily played with the carcasses and chewed on them, cayenne pepper and all. We tried scolding, choker chains, tying him up - it didn't help. Then, we tried tying one of the dead birds coated in hot pepper around his neck - we kept it that way for five days until we could no longer stand the stench. Several weeks later we went to town and came home a couple hours later to find Bobby and 8 dead birds scattered all around the yard. He was bloody and tired but he never seemed to realize that he had done anything wrong. We knew at that point there was no way to rehabilitate him and took him to the vet and had him put down. Not a pleasant end, but we had small children at the time and the vet said that Bobby would never change and it was uncertain what he would kill next. He never did it out of hunger - just he enjoyed killing. It was a bad scene.

Mom to NH's; Buckeyes; Bantam Cochins; ducks; turkeys; guineas; 2 outside dogs; a Yorkie; a Giant Schnauzer; 14 parrots; barn cats; 2 grown daughters; wife to 1 patient husband and Nana to 4 beautiful little girls and 1 handsome little boy

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Mom to NH's; Buckeyes; Bantam Cochins; ducks; turkeys; guineas; 2 outside dogs; a Yorkie; a Giant Schnauzer; 14 parrots; barn cats; 2 grown daughters; wife to 1 patient husband and Nana to 4 beautiful little girls and 1 handsome little boy

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