4/5 of my chickens dead. What to do with the surviving?

envysion

Hatching
5 Years
Jan 31, 2014
5
0
7
So, it happened.

My husband left our dog, (Named Hunter, whom he trained to retrieve doves, and despite my several stern warnings not to) alone around the chicken coop. He got in and killed 4 of my 5 juvenile New Hampshire Reds. We've reinforced the coop and we're shaming the dog pretty hard. He's been "segregated" from the pack, and isn't allowed to be in the same room as us alphas.

But, as for my surviving girl, what should I do with her? I've heard that chickens are social animals, and she seems very (understandably) stressed. I raised her from a chick. Do I purchase an adult/similarly aged chicken to keep her company? Should I wait and let her settle? I'm even considering giving her to my neighbor who has a flock of his own while we decide what to do.

Do chickens accept new birds into their flock easily?

Might I add that this was our first flock ever.. I'm really not happy with his dog (but it's his baby), and worried for my girl. I just want to do what's best for her.
 

Mattsiewrt94

Chirping
6 Years
Nov 5, 2013
223
6
71
When you add new chickens they will establish a pecking order so alittle fighting will happen but nothing to serious I would get more around her age
 

Chickenman2000X

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 9, 2014
29
5
24
I agree with Mattsiewrt94 get more chickens around the same age but put them in at night it helps the introduce the chickens and it can help keep the fighting and pecking to a minimal.
 

gander007

Crowing
8 Years
Oct 9, 2013
15,522
1,373
466
South Western Death Valley, Ca.
So, it happened.

My husband left our dog, (Named Hunter, whom he trained to retrieve doves, and despite my several stern warnings not to) alone around the chicken coop. He got in and killed 4 of my 5 juvenile New Hampshire Reds. We've reinforced the coop and we're shaming the dog pretty hard. He's been "segregated" from the pack, and isn't allowed to be in the same room as us alphas.

But, as for my surviving girl, what should I do with her? I've heard that chickens are social animals, and she seems very (understandably) stressed. I raised her from a chick. Do I purchase an adult/similarly aged chicken to keep her company? Should I wait and let her settle? I'm even considering giving her to my neighbor who has a flock of his own while we decide what to do.

Do chickens accept new birds into their flock easily?

Might I add that this was our first flock ever.. I'm really not happy with his dog (but it's his baby), and worried for my girl. I just want to do what's best for her.

It has been many years for me but I use to have many hunting dog's
Bird, hog and rabbit but a hunting dog is just that and nothing more
these are dog's who deserve their own kennel and I only hunted for
a little more the most people have been living .....

Chickens are a social bird and need friends .....
 

blucoondawg

Songster
6 Years
Jan 27, 2013
1,650
206
206
Northern Wisconsin
It has been many years for me but I use to have many hunting dog's
Bird, hog and rabbit but a hunting dog is just that and nothing more
these are dog's who deserve their own kennel and I only hunted for
a little more the most people have been living .....

Chickens are a social bird and need friends ..... 

this is a somewhat ignorant comment, many people have had hunting dogs and chickens for years including myself and I dont kennel the dog, never have, many even use them as guardian dogs. Hunting dogs can be trained to leave chickens alone the same as any other dog , I have found bird dogs the easiest as I think they are generally more intelligent than hounds
 

moetrout

Songster
12 Years
May 5, 2010
843
50
236
Milan, MI
Where are you at? If you were close I would give you a couple. I have a beagle and he does just fine with our chickens. He does like to mess with the rooster from time to time, but my guess is he is going to get his butt spurred soon and then that fun will be over. I think for my hound the chickens are like little walking treat machines. He likes to eat their poop. I know disgusting, but I have tried many things to stop it and have come to the conclusion it just can't be done effetively, he will eventually get his "treat". Not all dogs will do what your's did.
 

blucoondawg

Songster
6 Years
Jan 27, 2013
1,650
206
206
Northern Wisconsin
Ignorant is a big word but it means to not know as my words are from experience
and experience has not only taken me through life but into retirement and long
enough to have grandkids finish High School .....

All due respect generalizing a dog by type is unfair to many individual dogs who are good guardians or simply good yard or farm dogs and also unfair to inexperienced people who are seeking info on this website. By your comment if you have hunting dogs you must build them strong kennels of suffer the carnage of continual chicken killings. This is not true and I too have experience with many hunting dogs of varying breeds. Whether or not a dog can be trusted with chickens is based on the individual dog and more importantly how it was raised and how much time the owner puts in to training them.

Making general statements like all hunting dogs must be kenneled if you own chickens is no different than saying all pit bulls are man eaters, it is ignorant.

I wish the op good luck with their dog and chicken situation, too bad it happened but a couple losses are generally to be expected when dealing with dogs, be stern in your training and consistent andhopefully your dog will turn out fine like many others.
 

sbhkma

Songster
6 Years
Mar 27, 2013
921
609
211
Texas-Just a little bit South of Weird
No dog should be kept in a kennel all the time. Yes, I've had hunting dogs (labs). No, I never kenneled them. No, they never went after my birds. My son has a hunting dog. That dog watches over his chickens as if they were his pack. Just because you have a hunting dog doesn't mean he can't be (and he SHOULD be) your companion too. He's not a gun or a truck that you take out only for hunting you know.

And yes, many dogs can be trained to be fine with chickens. Mine are. In fact they saved one from a coyote attack 3 weeks ago. And they'd never seen a chicken until last year. It depends on the dog AND the owner/trainer. I agree with others here.. get the gal some buds to hang with. She'll be happier and so will you
wee.gif
 

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