Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by jessied1227, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. jessied1227

    jessied1227 Songster

    Mar 31, 2007
    East Brady, PA
    Hello all - I'm finally back up and running with high speed after our move. I've got my 12 girls set up in a very nice coop that has so far cost us nothing to construct. I will post pictures soon, and all in all, things are good with the chickens.

    Now, I am horrified to read all the chickens dead by dog posts. We have a 4 month old Border Collie/Springer Spaniel mix. He is the same age as my hens, and so far is excellent with them. He shows little interest in them and the girls pretty much ignore him.

    The girls free range and so does the Dog, Boomer. We do kennel him at night and the girls are sealed up tight in the coop through the night, but there is a huge amount of time through the day when they are both left pretty much to their own devices on our 13 acres.

    I'm now concerned about Boomer getting older and deciding to kill my flock. He is considered a livestock dog, but he is fast, and he could easily take down any of my girls if he wanted to.

    Does anyone have a dog raised with the chickens story that doesn't have a bad ending? If not, he's going to get a run set up and hopefully the girls will give him a wide berth.

    Thanks in advance for any advice, stories, etc. [​IMG]
  2. PurpleChicken

    PurpleChicken Tolerated.....Mostly

    Apr 6, 2007
    I'm only gonna say one thing and not post again on this thread so I don't get wrapped up in another dog debate.

    Sounds like your doing great and are on the right path with all your animals.
    KEEP IT UP!!! [​IMG]
  3. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    I must admit I am amazed that you haven't had problems leaving a 4 month old pup with your birds. A pup of any breed but especially such energetic breeds as he is. My thought is that if he isn't at least trying to play with them now, I don't mean to maliciously kill them but just run and play, that he'll probably be ok. He still should be watched closely, though.
  4. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    As someone who just lost a chick to their own beloved dog who'd never hurt a creature previously, I would tell you to be cautious. Border collies are bred to herd farm animals and chickens dont really take to herding. Also border collies often nip at the heels of larger critters to get them moving. A nip from a border collie to a cow doesnt do much, but to a chicken....could be bad. Even though I have personally had a bad experience that I am still recovering from (it was only a day ago) I wont tell you what to do. He is very young, maybe you have a shot at it working. But do be warry of him coming into his adult 'behaviors' as this is when the undesirable things they do usually occur. Be watchful is all I can tell you.
  5. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Songster

    May 4, 2007
    Not to mention Springer Spaniels are breed for flushing out birds....

    I would never leave my dog unsupervised and certianly don't let her start to chase at all. If my girl she gets too focused on the birds I "SHHH!" her, to get her attention off them.

    I never trust a dog around chickens or small children, that's just my policy, supervision is always required, IMO.
  6. magikchick

    magikchick ~FEATHERFOOTED DIVA~

    Apr 21, 2007
    SW Florida
    I have 2 mini doxies and a golden retriever. When I got my chicks I let my dogs smell them and told them they were babies under close supervision. My female doxie tried to nurse them.[​IMG]

    Now that the chickens are out free roaming in my yard the dogs look upon them as part of the family. My golden has taken the job of guard dog and if anything gets near the fence he runs it off.

  7. KrisRose

    KrisRose Songster

    Mar 9, 2007
    Davison, MI.
    I also have a border collie/ springer spanial mix. Got him as a stray, he was probably just under a year old at the time. He's now around 5 years old and has only been around chickens for about a year. I won't ever trust Corkey around chickens or bunnies. When I'm there his lips quiver [​IMG] and he's eyes are "fixed " on his intented prey. However, he's a smart dog and knows the WRATH OF MOTHER will come down on his little head if he steps out of line.
    We were sitting out in the yard and Blondie was sitting under my chair. Corkey's eyes never left her so we picked clover and placed it on his back and the other chickens were eating it. He never noticed. Than one of the other chickens, Splash, jumped on his back and was eating the clover. He never noticed. He was so intent on Blondie that nothing broke his concentration till she got up and left.
    The funniest thing is that the chickens don't fear him and follow Corkey around the yard, like a bunch of little sisters bugging their older bother. To keep himself under control he won't even look at them!!!
  8. Hotwings

    Hotwings Songster

    Jan 27, 2007
    southwestern Michigan
    My dog Dodge is very good around chickens as well as other animals. In fact he is the only dog Freebie will trust with her birds. Dodgey doesn't show much interest in them. He doesn't bother with them. Would I trust him alone with them? I don't know and I don't push it. When we go to Freebies farm sometimes he will run down to the barn and check things out. Denise has several Borders and doesn't trust any with her flock. Her female Border once got out and like a flash she was at the barn and trying to harm the chickens. Borders are extremely fast dogs! My dog is a small mutt dog around 40 lbs and he became like this naturally. He is a extremely passive dog. One time Jack the rooster butted him and he turned around and ran the other way.
  9. SandraChick

    SandraChick Songster

    I too would rather not get into a dog vs chicken debate.

    My dogs are awesome with my chickens and ducks

    It is my opinion that in general dog problems have more to do with owners and lack of training than the dogs themselves. Herding dogs, although trained to chase are working dogs- they were bred to LEARN what the MASTER wants---including PROTECTING THE HERD.

    Looks like you're doing fine...just remind your dog regularly you're the boss and the chickens are yours. Praise him when he's doing well too.

    OK...mums the word from here on out.
  10. KrisRose

    KrisRose Songster

    Mar 9, 2007
    Davison, MI.
    I agree with SandraChick. My dog knows those are my chickens and he is not to touch them. However, he's instinct sometimes takes control and that is why I don't trust him. All dogs, even within a breed, are different and I know Corkey well enough to know he can't be trusted with chickens. [​IMG]

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