Does any one have dogs free ranging with chickens? If so, how long did it take? My goal is to eventually have my two dogs mingling with hens in the yard and wonder if this is realistic. I'm thinking it could take upwards of 6 months--i'm willing to be patient and work at it slowly over time. The dogs are two Australian Shepherds who are 3 years and 8 years old--the miniature one is 16 pounds and the other one is around 45 pounds. Five chicks are arriving the first week of September and the coop is on the way. The coop with run will be self-contained/enclosed, but eventually my goal is to let the hens free range in the securely fenced yard with the 2 dogs, at least for part of the day when i'm home. The dogs have a doggie door and go in and out of the house as they please. They have a moderate herding instinct but have never lived with birds. The little one sometimes likes to chase birds when we go on off-leash outings. They do an excellent job of keeping critters out of the yard such as deer that used to hop the fence when we first moved in. The dogs are moderately well behaved and know basic commands. They're very protective of their property and in time I want them to be protective of the chickens too. I plan to work with the dogs, introducing them to the chicks a little bit every day so that the dogs and chicks develop a relationship right from the start. I get that I have to impress on the dogs from day one that the chicks are my property and need to be respected--just like the dogs know not to destroy my shoes or other belongings. I'll have to see how it goes and realize it will take everybody time to get used to each other. What do you think? Is it reasonable to think that over time dogs and chickens will be able to mingle together in the yard without constant human supervision?