Dog incident

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Booswalia, Sep 22, 2009.

  1. Booswalia

    Booswalia Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've had my chickens for about 3 weeks now and Buddy has been pretty good around them. He whimpers when I'm in the pen and when they make a fast move he jumps at them a bit. I've had him on leach when they are out of the pen and he's been getting better and better with them. For the past week he's been off leash with them and I've had no problems.

    Today I had them out free ranging and Buddy was with them behaving himself. ...until I went in the house for a minute. I heard a racket and he had one of the chickens cornered and seem to be right after her. He didn't hurt her and I hauled him off. Then he went back after her again, but again he didn't hurt her.

    I'm so disappointed in him and I don't know how to handle this. Any suggestions? I've lost my trust in him and I hate that. He's always been such a good dog. Part Border Collie, part lots of everything else.
  2. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    You have turned him out way too soon with the chickens. It will take much longer than 3 weeks to train him to leave them alone, if ever. I hope you at least scolded him very severely over this incident. Corrections must happen immediately. Continue training him as previously with him on leash. You have to overcome thousands of years of instincts, and it won't happen overnight.
  3. Booswalia

    Booswalia Chillin' With My Peeps

    He as scolded good and it was definitely immediate. I sure hope I can train him. He's 8 years old and has always been quite easy to train. I will be using the leash again for sure.
  4. possumqueen

    possumqueen Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 17, 2009
    Monroe, North Carolina
    You say "he whimpers when you are in the pen with them, and if they make a fast move he jumps at them a bit."

    You may be able to train him to behave himself in your presence, but he has way too much prey drive for you to ever be able to trust him alone with them.

    Punishment or corrections won't change him, except that he'll behave as you wish while you're there. It would be unfair to expect any better of him. Accept him as he is.[​IMG]
  5. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    I don't trust my current dogs alone with my chickens, EVER. They have shown by their actions that they are way too interested. I continue to train them to stay away from the chickens but I will never leave them alone with them. I have, in the past, owned a chicken trustworty dog but she was that way from birth. Hard to introduce chickens to a dog that hasn't been around them before and expect that dog to leave them alone, especially when he's showing interest. For your chickens sake I would just plan on keeping them apart.
  6. bc

    bc Out Of The Brooder

    May 1, 2009
    San Joaquin Valley
    I have a beagle and a larger hound that are both wonderful with the girls. The beagle was interested at first - I caught her licking her lips once while watching them, but I scolded her and have never had another incident. She even shares food with them now.

    You might google the dog whisperer. There was a dog whisperer episode where Cesar worked with a family that had a dog/chicken issue. The funny part was that the chicken laid an egg in the middle of the training....
  7. Andora

    Andora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 26, 2008
    Lexington, Kentucky
    I trained my coonhound to leave them alone by shaking a coffee can full of nuts and bolts at him any time he drooled over them, or was too interested in staring them down, or even sniffing their butts. Now he is afraid of them because he associates them with the The Can. [​IMG] You should try a can of bolts, it might work for your dog! You can shake the can or throw it in their direction in an emergency, it has been very effective for us.

    The only time he ever snaps at them is when they try to take food he's eating, and well in that case it's pretty much the fault of a dumb bird for climbing in a hungry dog's food dish! I still scold him for that though. He doesn't hurt them, just snaps. I leave my dogs alone with my chickens while they range in the yard with no worries! (My other dog is a black lab mutt who was born on a farm and is protective of livestock.)

    I also feed my dogs cracked, dirty, or age questionable eggs. I think they associate the chicken pen with treats now, so they wait begging outside of it all the time when we're in there.
  8. chookchick

    chookchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 18, 2008
    Olympia WA
    If you go to the 'Predators and Pests' forum, you will see post after post of people who had a dog that was "wonderful" with the chickens, until the one day that it was not. In most cases the dog kills a good portion of the flock before it is caught, and it is truly a heartbreaking situation. I would have to agree with the earlier poster who pointed out the high prey drive. Consider this a lucky warning, and do what is necessary to protect your chickens.
  9. NateinFL

    NateinFL Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 7, 2009
    Wesley Chapel FL
    You might have to use force, I know some people say to never hit an animal, just like you should never spank a child, but really with animals that is what they'll remember the most. Let him know that he better not let anything happen to those chickens or you will be VERY upset. I think a majority of dogs would know right from wrong once you've made it clear that the chickens are not to be touched.
  10. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    If he's not trustworthy and voice-obedient then you either need to
    protect the chickens from him by keeping them penned safely all the time,
    OR the dog on leash when they are out,
    OR alternately if you aren't able to have him on leash with you then he needs an electric collar while you are in the yard with them
    OR the dog needs to be left in the house any time the chickens are out.

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