Great Pyrenees attacking and kills chickens, need help please.

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by p12chickens, Feb 17, 2017.

  1. p12chickens

    p12chickens New Egg

    5
    0
    7
    Jan 5, 2017
    Hello,
    I don't know if this is in the correct forum but:
    We have a 4 month old Great Pyrenees and he has already fatally injured one and yesterday he killed and viscerated another hen.
    We are at a loss as to what to do. We got him to help protect the chickens but never expected this to happen.
    We are open to any and all suggestions please.
    Thank you.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017
  2. eggbert420

    eggbert420 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,152
    372
    196
    Feb 15, 2017
    Texas
    Great Pyrenees don't taste that good so rehome him.
     
  3. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

    17,230
    5,714
    501
    Mar 9, 2014
    Oregon
    My Coop
    While GP are commonly used as livestock guardian dogs (LGD) it is not a matter of simply getting one as a pup, putting them out with livestock and they know what to do -- there is a great deal of work that goes into building a good LGD. How long have you had this pup? Did the place you got him from have their GP's as working LGD and, if so, were the litter being raised around the livestock at that facility with the guidance of mom/dad? How have you been working with the pup up to now with regards to the livestock? Are you using him strictly as a LGD or are you keeping him as a pet and expecting him to also work as an LGD?
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

    5,000
    1,198
    366
    Jan 14, 2012
    Conway SC
    Is the dog attacking them or playing with them "to death"?? Mine as a young pup only played with the younger 2/3/4 months old and killed one and put several into shock. I beat her butt. Now she is the best watch dog over the flock. That was 18 months ago. Now, If a chicken gets scared---hollers, she comes a running, barking, growling to scare off a attacker, but most of the time its just a blown bag or something scaring them.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017
  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    17,955
    2,621
    466
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Normal with pup. Separate them when supervised. Pup can still make but give until 2 years and some training.
     
  6. dawn secord

    dawn secord Chillin' With My Peeps

    212
    33
    76
    May 12, 2016
    Southern California
    Absolutely need to school that pup. Our dogs are taught what is off limits and what is not. Right now I have an Irish Setter laying next to a batch of hatched chicks - they are 7 days old. The chicks are off limits. The dog is not remotely interested in them (keeping in mind an Irish Setter is a bird hunting dog). When she was 4 months old she would have killed them.

    Put that pup on a leash so you have control - walk towards the chickens and have a "NO" word. It doesn't not have to be NO - my word of schooling to tell the dogs something is off limits is "aught O". I have the leash - show the pup the chickens and say my word strongly and pop them with the leash. Do not let them get close enough to frighten the chickens - you do not want the chickens to run. If the pup advances to the chickens, a pop on the lead followed by my word. When the pup looks away from the chicken - praise the pup - make a bid deal positively. If you only correct negatively you are going to frighten the pup.

    Scold for approaching the chickens, praise for looking away. NEVER have the pup off leash around the chickens. When you know the pup is not lunging or interested in the chickens, start getting closer to the chickens with the pup. When the pup is trust worthy, walk through the chickens. Try not to have the chickens run - that will make it tougher on the pup. When the pup is ignoring the chickens, throw some food to the chickens so the come closer to the pup. The pup can not react. If it does, you are not done working on a short leash - keep working. If the pup doesn't respond to a pop on the lead, increase the pop to a stronger pop. Eventually graduate to a long lead - small rope or lunge line of 20 feet. Do the same thing. You want the pup to think the sky is falling when it looks at or even approach the chickens.

    When the pup chooses not to look at the chickens - wow - go crazy with praise. Show the pup the difference - chickens mean the sky is falling. Staying away from chickens means the world is AWESOME. NEVER let the pup loose with the chickens again until they know the difference. If you don't stop it now, you might not be able to have the dog around the chickens - ever.

    IMPORTANT - be sure to ALWAYS follow with praise - even if the pup looks away from the chicken and at you for a second. Too much negativity will get you nowhere. Always follow up with praise for the smallest positive act by the pup. The pup will figure it out. Baby steps. At first just a look away from the chicken gets praise. When the pup decides to turn away from the chicken praise. When the pup walks through the chickens on a leash and doesn't look at them - praise. Praise for everything positive not matter how big or small.

    Good luck!
     
    3 people like this.
  7. dawn secord

    dawn secord Chillin' With My Peeps

    212
    33
    76
    May 12, 2016
    Southern California
    Here is the dog holding some chicks for photos about a year ago - she was 3. My dogs are used as models for my artwork. They are trained to do just about anything. I start working with them from the time they are pups.

    Takes lots of time and even more positive reinforcement and training. Most importantly, my dogs are never set up for failure. They are never asked to do anything I am not 100% positive they can do and are ready to do.

    For the attached photo, my dog knew how to hold the basket - it was empty. She knows to "hold" objects in her mouth. We practiced for a few days with her just holding the empty basket. Then I'd hold the basket with the chickens in it - suspended by my hand so if she dropped it, I'd catch it. I gradually started moving my hand further away. It took a long time to teach her to do this with live animals. Again, I never set her up for failure. It was a series of baby steps starting with her holding a stick.

    Training needs to be done consistently, with patience, love, and encouragement - what you do now will set your pup up for its lifetime. We can really do so much with dogs. [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017
    3 people like this.
  8. poodlechicks

    poodlechicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,076
    80
    186
    Apr 2, 2013
    NY
    Love you picture. The dog are beautiful! Congratulations on your training.
     
  9. dawn secord

    dawn secord Chillin' With My Peeps

    212
    33
    76
    May 12, 2016
    Southern California
    Thank you. The training is just an investment in a life time of wonderful behavior by my pets. Your kind words are appreciated.
     
  10. poodlechicks

    poodlechicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,076
    80
    186
    Apr 2, 2013
    NY
    You're welcome! I too trained all my dogs myself and never regretted the time and effort I put into it. They were amazing dogs.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by