Do dogs kill like this?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by elizabeth, Sep 28, 2007.

  1. elizabeth

    elizabeth Hatching

    Sep 28, 2007
    I live in the Balearic islands in the Mediterranean and we have no foxes here, or indeed any predators, other than dogs. So I have to assume the following was carried out either by a stray dog or a neighbour's dog. But it seems so weird.

    My 10 hens are kept in a large pen with 5ft fencing around and hen house in middle. Last week I went to see the hens as usual early morning to find a total massacre. Four 'old' hens were dead with horrendous injuries, the 6 young hens (6 months old) had vanished. Closer inspection revealed masses of feathers and the perfectly clean entrails of the 6 birds. No bones, no blood, no beaks, feet, heads, flesh, nothing. Except entrails and feathers. It looked like a butcher had been in and done a tidy job.

    My questions:

    Would one dog really eat 6 almost fully grown hens?

    Is it normal for dogs to eat EVERYTHING except feathers and entrails? (Why leave the entrails??!!)

    Is is more likely to be a pack of wild dogs? Or one starving dog? Can't believe a neighbour's dog would be that hungry.

    When I found the bodies they were still warm. The hens are close enough to the house to hear, yet I heard nothing of what went on. Wouldn't dogs and hens have made a row?

    There was a dog size hole in the fence which has been repaired and we have now cemented all around the base so the wire can't be lifted. We're ready to start again with more hens but still confused as to what happened.

    Would really appreciate any input. Sorry if i sound really naive. Just sad.

  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Wow... since you said no predators other than dogs... I don't know what to say. It sounds more like a coon to me but if you don't have them I am lost. Dogs usually mangle and chew up their birds and rarely eat them. How many entrails did you find? How many bodies did you fine? It is possible some are hiding out.

    What type of injuries were there?

    Hope someone can figure it out.
  3. BirdBrain

    BirdBrain Prefers Frozen Tail Feathers

    May 7, 2007
    So, I hate to play "devil's advocate" but could it have been both a dog and his human master? Dogs eat entrails. Do you keep the hen LOCKED in the hen house at night? If your habit is to get out there every morning, you could unlock the hen house and let them out. If you found a dog sized hole, how big a dog. Could a person have come through too or would they have just come in through the gate?

    I am so sorry this has happened to you. What type of fence do you have? Is is chicken wire or something stronger?

    Could you ask your neighbors if they heard anything unusual? It seems really strange.
  4. jkcove08

    jkcove08 Songster

    Apr 12, 2007
    I agree with birdbrain that you might have had a human predator. They might have butchered the first 6 and then left the other 4 to throw you off on what happened. I think a very secure lock might be needed from now on. Sorry about the loss of your birds. Good luck with the next set. Jenn
  5. I recently had a dog attack and there was no eating of the chickens. Just dead chickens that looked like they got chomped on and feathers removed but no sign of it eating them. I say your attack was not a dog.
  6. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    Nope..I think you had a two footed predator helping him/herself.
    Dogs will play with the birds to death. They'll look like nothing wrong with them except that they're stone cold dead.
    Sorry for your losses.
  7. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    COuld be birds of prey too?? DO you have hawks and eagles around?
  8. wegotchickens

    wegotchickens DownSouth D'Uccles & Silkies

    Jul 5, 2007
    Sevier County, TN
    I've seen the reamins of a hawks meal, and it is like you describe. But I can't see it eating 6 hens at one time. Unless they were chicks and were very young?
  9. TxChiknRanchers

    TxChiknRanchers Songster

    Aug 18, 2007
    Southeast Texas
    You may have a person problem, sorry for your loss.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2007
  10. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    Dogs will just massacre and leave dead chickens or they will munch on tasty innards, but to take the good parts and leave the innards? HUMAN.

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