Chicks and dogs

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Whistling Badger, May 27, 2008.

  1. Whistling Badger

    Whistling Badger Songster

    May 26, 2008
    a burrow in a pasture
    Howdy. We are eagerly awaiting our shipment of eggs (there are 18, but I'm not counting 'em before they hatch). We have a big dog who is a very gentle soul, but he likes to play, and he's a pretty good mouser. He's very gentle with my wife's mentally retarded cat, who was not much bigger than a handful when we got him. So we figure if and when the chicks hatch we'll introduce them to the dog, supervise very closely, and make sure he understands that they are not to be "played" with.

    Has anyone else done this? Having the chicks and the dog on friendly terms seems like pretty good insurance against predators, as long as Rocky Dog understands they're his friends...

  2. my golden retriever is 5 months old. He is good with our chicks. Today he was watching them when I let them out side. A few escaped from there make shift fence he made sure they didn't get to far.

    I think the trick is close supervision when you first get the chicks.
  3. jaku

    jaku Songster

    A lot of training can get you almost anything with dogs- I just can't imagine how much time it would take to train my insane dogs not to chase my birds! [​IMG]
  4. BettyR

    BettyR Songster

    Mar 1, 2008
    Texas Gulf Coast
    I love my dogs as much as any sane person could possibly love a dog. They are wonderful dogs; they are gentile and completely trustworthy with kids, cats and any other small animal that my kids have ever brought into the house.

    Still I wouldn’t trust them any farther than I could throw them with a chicken and the dogs weigh around 140 pounds each.

    It is always better to err on the side of caution…it will save you a lot of grief.
  5. Bi0sC0mp

    Bi0sC0mp Songster

    Apr 21, 2008
    but no matter how much you train a dog never trust them around your chickens its in there blood its there nature
  6. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    I consider my Charlie dog to be one of the most gentliest creatures to walk this earth; but I still took precautions to protect the chicks from her. One day when my mind was a bit muddled I accidently left a door open, giving her access to the chicks. She grabbed one. I truly believe she only wanted to play with it or mother it, as she did the cat when she was a kitten. All turned out well, the chick was in shock, but recovered overnight. Charlie got the first whipping she's ever had from me in the nine years I've owned her. What hurt her worse I believe is that I refused to talk to her or pay her any attention for a couple of days. Now she acts scared of the chicks, but I'll never trust her with them. IMO even the gentlest or laziest dog should not be trusted around chickens. It only takes one time.
  7. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

    Jul 8, 2007
    Woodville, MS
    Our shepherd has slept in the bathroom with each batch of baby chicks which were just in a cardboard box. He then sleeps by their hutch outside when they are moved out at a week old. And protects them when they are freeranging all day long. He watches the skies and chases hawks as well. Both dogs and four cats all interact and comingle with the chickens. I have another dog that recently killed 6 ducks and I wouldn't trust her as far as I could throw her. She doesn't bother the freeranging chickens but didn't seem to like the ducks for some reason but all in all she's just not to be trusted. I think it all just depends on the dog.
  8. youthpastor

    youthpastor In the Brooder

    Apr 9, 2008
    Vancouver Island, BC
    I was sooo mad at our dog. Sunday he got into the chicken run, and he killed one of my hens. I thought that he had killed another one, and a couple others were missing, but the one recovered and the others somehow got out in the chaos only to return out of the bushes a few hours later unharmed. Anytime it's not as bad as you thought, it's easier to take. I also was able to fix the weak spot in the run, so now hopefully it won't happen again.
  9. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2008
    Birnamwood, Wisconsin
    As of right now...yes, my boxer LOVES the chicks BUT it's in their instinct to give chase so we worry about that when they are roaming in the yard. We will be learning right with ya! I would start letting the chicks walk on the dog while they are little and you can hold the dog to get him used to the babies. Here is a link to the picture of my dog with one of my chicks. He's very gentle with them right now.
  10. Tom,

    With training most dogs can learn to accept the chickens as part of the pack. Do some searches on the forum, many of us have free range chickens with dogs. Some basis training method have recently been posted.

    How much protect the dog will provide depends on the dog. Our retrievers where useless in preventing predators; guard dogs breeds seem to work the best. But, it really all depend on if the dog is focused on guarding the property.

    Our current system has given us about a year and a half of freedom from predators with chickens and ducks that range free. 1) Fenced in yard to keep the dogs in. 2) 4 dogs, the leader being a Great Pyrenees. The Pyr is the key to the whole system. She’s the best. 3) Chickens are “locked down” in a bullet proof coop at night. How bullet proof? They sleep inside of a coop, in my shop, which is in our walkout basement. Yep, they live inside the house. And, two dogs sleep with them (in crates). Bullet proof!

    Good luck. With love (between you and the dog) and a little work, it should work out.


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