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Do Dogs and Chickens EVER mix??

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Dagmarvelous, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. Dagmarvelous

    Dagmarvelous Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm a total newbie. Don't even have the incubator built yet, but am doing all my research first (that's good right?).

    We live in suburbia, have a nice sized yard, and have two large, well behaved dogs. Do dogs and chickens ever mix? Will my dogs constantly try to get into the coop? Will they ever all roam free together? And most importantly... what if I miss a dog poop on the grass, will the chickens eat it while free range?

    Just want to make a plan before I pull the trigger. Thanks!
     
  2. danielle82

    danielle82 A Good Egg

    Apr 27, 2009
    Tonasket Wa
    Not Mine
     
  3. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    I'm on 9 acres and my dogs are great with the flock. They ignore the chickens and chase the coyotes, raccoons, etc. That being said, I've seen post after post where people have lost their entire flock to the family dog. Be very, very carefull if you try to have your chickies and dogs together and do not ignore any feeling you get about the dog being "too" interested in the chickens. The best course of action when planning your set up is to assume it needs to be completly predator proof, Including your dog. That way if they do well together great, if not you're already set up for keeping yhem seperate.
     
  4. 1 of my dogs, NO, the other one YES
    I dont have chickens yet but my neighbor does. My hound is basically a protector towards THEIR livestocks (SUCKS HUH?) while my other one, bassette mix, will eat anything that is smaller then her and moves.

    I seens alot of people on here posting about how great their dogs are towards their chickens, there are even pictures on here with both if you can find them.
     
  5. HEChicken

    HEChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    Depending on what breeds your dogs are you can make some predictions (i.e. dogs breeds whose purpose is to hunt, like a terrier, will be more likely to hunt the chickens, whereas dog breeds whose purpose is shepherd will be less likely) but you won't know for sure until you put them together and see how they react. In my opinion, the best thing is to not ever leave them together unattended. There are dogs who will be good as gold while you're around and as soon as you're not, they'll make their move. So, even if everything *seems* to be okay, I wouldn't leave them together unattended. Period.

    As for whether or not they'll eat the poop, it is far more likely that the dogs will eat the chicken poop than the other way around. I've seen my chooks peck at dog poop once or twice. Perhaps they saw something that passed through that looked kind of interesting [​IMG] But for the most part, the chooks aren't interested in the dog poop, while the dogs look at the chicken poop as gourmet tucker.
     
  6. wombat

    wombat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 23, 2009
    Dogs are often a problem with chickens, but my German Shepherd Dog gets along fine with them. When the young ones haven't yet learned when to get back in the run, he helps me move them. Generally he acts like chickens are beneath his dignity. If they annoy him too much, he'll just tense up like he's about to pounce, and they scatter, and he stands there with a doggy grin on. He does a good job of chasing off any ariel predators; we've not lost any chickens to hawks, 737s, or the police helicopter.

    Tending breeds are often good with whatever you entrust them with. Breeds that are by nature inclined to kill squeeky things (like terriers) or retrieve game birds, however, may be a bit harder to train to leave chickens alone.
     
  7. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

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    Feb 11, 2008
    Waterloo, Nebraska
    You are more likely to have the dog eating the chicken poop than the other way around. I have seen my chickens eat everything but poop so I wouldn't worry about that. The majority of dogs (especially if they were not raised with chickens) will not be good with them. However, there are exceptions. Take it slowly and do not expect miracles. It takes a lot of time and training. The best dog with chickens is one that totally ignores them. The dogs that want to follow them, sniff them and play with them often have the behavior escalate to nipping, chasing and killing the chickens. Dogs with high prey drive are particularly difficult. Guarding breeds are usually easier than hunting and herding breeds. It really just depends on the dogs and your willingness to spend a lot of time training and supervising. Also, if you have neighbors, make sure that they realize that their dogs are not welcome to roam in your yard.
     
  8. Advice I got...if you dont have a dog yet but want one when you have chickens, start them out as puppies and train them to be "NICE" to the chickens, to protect them.
     
  9. protodon

    protodon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 3, 2009
    Nottingham,PA
    My dogs are great with my birds now and they didn't see their first chicken til they were about 2. I have a hound mix that was a lot more interested in them than my lab mix so it just took a bit mroe watching and discipline but they pretty much ignore them now. Every once in a while they do get an interest in a fast moving chick, duckling or quail but I just have to tell them no and they will lose interest real quickly. I think training dogs to be ignorant of your birds depends on how high-strung the dog is.
     
  10. 2468Chickensrgr8

    2468Chickensrgr8 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 7, 2007
    Ontario
    LOL.....oh ya ....get ready to pull the trigger ...In my humble opinion I think if you have well trained dogs there will not be a problem ...We have two large dogs and I only had to train one to leave the chickens alone ...and by training that was putting him back on leash and working with him to leave the chickens alone ...its good if they know the "leave it " command first ...try that away from the chickens first ......I have never had a problem with my dogs ...I have trained family dogs also ...and one is a hound !!! with BIG TIME NOSE!!!......Found it helps if they have alot of excersise before they have training around the chickens also...My rule is no dogs alowwed in the coop ...Also just recently over the summer we picked up two kittens for mouse patrol outside and they are my coop cats ...hot barncats...they live on the side of the coop where the feed containers are but have a small door to go into the chicken coop and yard area ...I also have 6 baby chicks ...no problems ...
    Dont worry about the poop thing ...we live out in the country and they eat everything .....EVERYTHING ....they spread out the horse poop for us ...and plus there more interested in bugs etc.

    Good Luck !! Let the adventures begin ....one word of wisdom and I hadnt found BYC when we made our coop ...is GO BIG on your coop ! because who are we kiddin' once you get bitten by the chicken bug ...your gonna want more !!!!LOL I wish I did ....not I am trying to work on hubby for coop #2 ......
     

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