Dogs & Chickens

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by krange71, Oct 24, 2008.

  1. krange71

    krange71 New Egg

    Apr 19, 2008
    I have had chickens for around 3 years now and have never had any trouble with our dogs. They seemed to take our chickens into the family just like they are and they never bothered them. They will lay in the chicken coop with the girls. We recently became a foster parent to a rottweiler (however you spell it) anyway he was 6-8 weeks old when we got him and he has become a very loving puppy. Anyway now when we let him out we have to watch him because he has started to chase the girls and if he corners one he will pluck her feathers so I thought he was playing and scolded him well last night my boys seen him corner and kill one of our girls. We brought her in the house and tried everything but she ended up dying. Now that all of this has taken place is too late to teach him? I called the no-kill shelter where he is registered as being fostered in our home and they said we should bring him down there because most likely he will continue. My middle sons cried and cried last night and I just can't get him to understand. Any advice would be grateful. Our other dogs which are 3 labs, 1 pug, 1 chihuahua, beagle/coon dog and now Blaze the rottweiler. Like I said before none of our other dogs have ever bothered the girls. Please help.[​IMG]
  2. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    [​IMG] !!! I can't believe I'm reading yet another dog-killed-chicken story. Poor hen. [​IMG] It's too risky to trust a recently acquired dog, whose disposition is not certain. Clearly though, you never wanted this to happen and I know it must be a sad time.

    You may save many a featherd life by having posted this story and you should be commended for having the courage to do so, and also for giving your several dogs a place to call home.

    The endless litany of dog-killed-chicken stories on BYC are a constant reminder to all of us. Sadly, it matters not to a terrorized or dead bird that we didn't mean it. Our birds have no choice but to depend on us to protect them as they cannot possibly defend themselves. Hopefully your story will be read by many and reinforce the imperative of being ever vigilant.

    As to the rottie, and really to your question (I'm so sorry to diverge from it but have been so saddened by so many stories lately of chicken deaths at the hands (paws and jaws) of dogs and keep hoping there will be progress in this area but it never seems to be so [​IMG]), it's a very hard question to answer definitively. It's possible the pup could be trained to behave but it's a bit of a wild card - even though you've obviously done a great job with your other dogs I would never trust this new dog to be alone with the birds.

    I'm really sorry about all of this.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2008
  3. MamaDragon

    MamaDragon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2008
    Camden, AR
    Once a dog has started killing chickens, it's almost impossible to break them of it. I do know that some people have had some success at it, but it takes constant training, a short leash, and NEVER allowing the dog unsupervised access to the yard.

    I'm no expert by any means, but I know that some dogs have a stronger "prey drive / instinct" than others, and will kill any "tresspassers" in their yard, no matter whether it's another pet, or not.

    The biggest threat to our flock has been our two chihuahuas. They'll tackle a hen given half a shot at it, and will steal and eat any eggs they can find. I have to keep them on tie-outs in the yard, and the chickens have learned the boundaries, and seldom wander into the "kill zone".

    I too, have young boys, in fact, half our flock belongs to our 10 yr old. His birds, and his responsibility. This morning, I had to tell him that one of the brooder-chicks is going to need to be put down if it doesn't start doing better by the end of the weekend. BOTH DSs went hysterical, and it was all I could do to get them calmed down enough to finish getting ready for school, and go catch the bus. It's not going to be a good day for them. [​IMG]

    All I can advise, is to again calmly explain the situation, ask them if they want what just happened to happen again, or possibly to one of your smaller dogs, and try to gently guide them thru the logical steps to realize that, No, we don't WANT to have to do this, but it's necessary to protect the rest of the birds. Reassure them that the Rotweiler will be staying with another loving family, just one that doesn't have chickens.

    We had to put down a young pup that had been dumped out here, as he was chasing the chickens, and would have killed several if my hubby hadn't gotten between the pup and the chickens. Our 10 yr old DS made the decision. He didn't like having to do that to a "sweet puppy", but understood that his birds were in danger, and it was more important to protect his chickens than to give a home to that dog.

    We don't have any shelters here, let alone a No Kill one.

    Good Luck, and hugs to you and your kids

  4. animal nut

    animal nut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 11, 2008
    S. E Ohio
    I have been an owner of many different breeds of dogs over the years. Collie, shepard akita, beagle coonhound, lab and now toy poodles and a pyreness. I feel that the best thing that you could do is return the dog. It takes alot of time and patience to train a dog let alone stop a bad behavior. Don't take the chance. He is a foster dog.

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