How to protect against dogs

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by mistfall, Feb 5, 2017.

  1. mistfall

    mistfall In the Brooder

    Nov 14, 2016
    Today I lost 3 of my 5 Ayam Cemani to a dog that broke into my elevated coop, barreling right through the hardware cloth that had withstood tropical storms and foiled mongooses.

    What is the best way to build a dog-proof structure? I'm both heart-sick and enraged about this. The chickens were pets as well as valuable, and the dog was a loose hunting dog whose owner fled rather than man up and face me.
  2. Chicken Bff

    Chicken Bff Chirping

    May 20, 2016
    Do you have a picture of your coop? Luckly you can get some more this spring?
  3. Dmontgomery

    Dmontgomery Songster

    Apr 1, 2014
    Longville, La
    The only way I can think of to "dog proof" the coop/run with absolute security would be a chain link fence with the bottom buried in a concrete trench. The fence would still have to be tall enough that the dog couldn't climb over it or the top would have to be covered too.
    We built a chain link dog run for my neighbor last year that was a little over 6' high. The dog was able to scale the fence about just a few days of practice.
  4. mistfall

    mistfall In the Brooder

    Nov 14, 2016

    Something about the iPad browser interface won't let me post photos, unfortunately. The weak spot was the hardware cloth on the doors. I think when I rebuild I'll have to sandwich it between a second set of boards or plywood.

    Yes --for a few hundred dollars I can replace them. But the cockerel I lost was a stellar example of the breed, and quite a charming pet. The lost pullets weren't as fine quality, but one was a cuddly "lap chicken".

    It's expensive to replace them as livestock; impossible to replace them as pets. Few people will ship either eggs or chicks to Hawaii.
  5. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    Hot wire is good....when done right, you'll have no more problems from dogs.
  6. Bantambird

    Bantambird Crowing

    Feb 6, 2013
    Oh wow, Hawaii? That will be expensive indeed! And with the number of feral chickens there.. that is a thing there right? Here where I live in Montana, bear country isn't far from me. If you had big predators who won't quit, electric fencing is a wonderful deterrent. Good choice on hardware cloth over chicken wire, and we have to cove out wire under the ground to deter diggers like dogs, skunks, foxes and the like. Latches have to be raccoon proof, since they have fingers. Perhaps a brace in the door? Use a double layer over the frame, inside and outside, my husband and my dad have a trick during fencing, to lay barb wire along the bottom of the fence. Dogs and foxes only dig there once, hit the barbs, get cut and leave. You could sandwich barbed wire between your hardware cloth in the frame, if he busted through, he'd get stabbed. He would have to be really determined to tear through that, and it will hurt a lot.
  7. mistfall

    mistfall In the Brooder

    Nov 14, 2016

    Good grief. At least some fencing might slow the dog down long enough for me to get a good aim at it.
  8. mistfall

    mistfall In the Brooder

    Nov 14, 2016

    Yes-- there's a good number of feral chickens. The dogs seem to prefer a captive victim, though. I think I do need to brace the door - sandwich the hardware cloth between a second layer of boards or plywood. I put the staples fairly close --had to to keep mongooses out-- but the dog just broke through like it was nothing. Maybe tacking it down with some U-nails would help, too.
  9. bigoledude

    bigoledude Songster

    Jan 16, 2011
    SE, Louisiana
    The best way to handle a killer dog on the loose is to kill the dog. Historically, it is a rather recent phenomenon for people to consider protecting your stock as cruel. When I was a kid, and for generations before me, a dog might kill chickens ONCE! If spotted again it'd be dispatched on sight. If you are reluctant to kill any predator, you will continue to be a victim.

    You will hear people say "The dog is only doing what comes natural to him". That is exactly why he must be killed. Killing is embedded in his DNA. Nothing you can possibly do will stop that dog from trying to get your chickens now that he's been successful killing yours. The feral chickens that have survived are obviously descended from the ones that were able to escape being killed. With each subsequent generation they get even better at avoiding capture. A dog will absolutely kill the ones that are easiest to catch. Yours!!!

    Sure, beefing up your coop and run is smart. Although I don't think you need to go as far as suggested here. The dog exposed a weak spot in your defenses. Fix that one and take a good long look at your enclosures and make sensible improvements where needed.

    If you decide to kill this dog, the last thing you want to do is let anyone hear you threaten to do this. They use an acronym around here. The SSS method. Shoot, Shovel and Shut up!!!

    Those birds of yours are a fine breed and are not cheap to replace. You have EVERY RIGHT and the moral responsibility to vigorously protect them.
    2 people like this.
  10. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    Great advise from everyone above! That dog needs to be gone, and if an owner is findable, payment for birds and damages should be legally binding. Electric set up right deters most predators! Motivated large dogs can get through or over many types of fencing. My coop is on a concrete foundation, the hardware cloth is reinforced with 2"x4" woven wire on the lower 4', and the doors are exterior doors from the Habitat Restore. All the best, Mary [​IMG]


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