Getting Chickens Used To Dogs

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Ilovefarming, Nov 4, 2014.

  1. Ilovefarming

    Ilovefarming Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 12, 2014
    Hi there!
    I am planning on buying a puppy this spring, hopefully. I don't know how to get my chickens used to the dog, and how to get the dog not to bother the chickens. How do you do it? I have 7 pullets/cockerels, and 3 full grown, laying hens. Yesterday my friend brought a dog to my house. They freaked out! Is it possible to have a dog and chickens without them not getting along? How do I teach the puppy to not bother the chickens?

    Have a nice day! :)

    Ilovefarming
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2014
  2. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    It's good for chickens to fear dogs! Your job will be to train the puppy, and in the process, your flock will get used to your dog as an individual, and be fine with her. Training the puppy will be the priority. Mary
     
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  3. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    My preference is to have bird accustomed to poultry safe dogs to reduce behaviors of bird that promote predatory response of dog. With new dog I set aside a bird, usually a mature rooster specifically for purpose for training dog. That rooster is kept in a pen set in a location where I can control access dog has to pen perimeter. My preferred approach is to have pen so it is up against a fence or building and to have straw bales that can be used to block off to other sides. Then set yourself up to be comfortable near pen where you are ideally at ground level looking either away from or obliquely at the pen and rooster. Something to read or otherwise occupy you also ideal. Then after you know you have good control over dog with leash, bring it up pen and have it there. Initially looking a rooster OK but nothing else such a pacing. Let dog watch chicken if it wants to but reprimand if it does anything to close distance. Bird should calm down after a bit. Take dog for a walk then bring it back and resume sitting. Do not look at chicken yourself. As both parties calm down toss some eats in for rooster and possibly even dog to bring them together with considerations of other than each other. Repeat the walks. At some point dog will become interested in other targets which can be encouraged if not chickens. You want dog to become board with that chicken and that chicken to relax as it becomes habituated to interactions. This not a one session deal and takes time to get to point I want with dog that is trustworthy without supervision. At some point I proceed to having pen removed from equation. End point you can realize will be a function of dogs maturity. Pups usually not fully trustworthy until pushing 2 years of age but you can get some close.

    At some point you want interactions such that both parties have a lot more freedom of movement so dog can get used to seeing chickens in a variety of contexts but also under consistent rules where messing with birds is a no-no.
     
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  4. Heather7

    Heather7 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have 2 large labs and 3 cats. I got my 1st flock in may of this year. I have one dog that's wants to sniff butts. Other than not one time have I had an issue. I think it depends on the type and temperament of the dog. By getting a puppy, having them around each other will teach the dog they are friends not food. The chickens will get used to the butt sniffers
     
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  5. Ilovefarming

    Ilovefarming Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you! Just wondering, would a Border Collie be a better dog breed to have around chickens? That is the breed I was kinda thinking about in the first place.

    Appreciate all of your helpful replys!
     
  6. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I would be comfortable with a Border Collie around chickens in part because done it. Dog was only supposed help herding with cattle and hogs which was done irregularly. Herding switch was turned off around birds which was pretty easy to do. Keep dog mentally stimulated or make so exposure to chickens only under supervision. In the end dog will require more of your time than the chickens.

    Do not forget the 2 years part; all dog breeds I have experience take that long to outgrow the puppy stage.
     
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