I lost my three sweet hens about a month and a half ago to a coyote that tore through the wire on the coop. We are in the city and there have never been reports of coyotes in this neighborhood but now things have changed. Our house backs up to a wooded area (yes, in the city) and because I have nearly an acre, I can't afford to fence the perimeter of the property. I obtained a much more sturdy coop. I also have put a chain link dog run around the coop and added chain link to the top. I have three chicks who should be fully feathered in about three more weeks and ready to go outside. Now I'm understanding that a coyote can dig underneath the dog run and I cannot take this kind of risk again. I've read all different things about predator proofing fencing and I'm trying to decide what to do. I have a few questions I would really appreciate help with. I don't have a lot of money so I'm trying to get the most bang for my buck for $100, but willing to spend a little more if necessary. Here are the options I'm considering along with my reservations. Feedback please!
1) I've read about electric fencing. How does that work if you have your own animals who are in the yard? One of my dogs is super afraid of everything and visually impaired and I worry that he would have a heart attack. I'm not leaning toward doing this but am open to it.
2) Digging a trench and sinking the dog run into a foot of concrete. First of all, how wide does the trench need to be? Second, Since the run is only 6' tall, this would mean that it would be only 5' tall and difficult to stand in with the chain link roof. Is there any way around this? Could we sink it in less than a foot? In some ways this seems like the best option, but the permanence of it bothers me. If I want a different coop, it would be nearly impossible to ever get it out of the dog run.
3) Apron of chicken wire underneath. Can someone please tell me exactly how you do this? I can't seem to find it in the detail that I need. What tools do I need and how much man/woman power? This seems like a viable option other than the labor involved.
Sorry if these questions seem obvious. I have searched and can't seem to find what I need, so I much appreciate your collective wisdom!
Mama to three new chickie girls: BR, PR and Ameracauna (named respectively Wanda, Eve and Mabel)