How would one inctroduce Dogs to Chicks

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by MaeRain, Dec 12, 2015.

  1. MaeRain

    MaeRain Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 10, 2015
    I have two Leonberge dogs who are my darling loves. We will be hatching chicks this spring in hope of having a flock of 10 hens and a cockerel on our estate. What is the best way to introduce our dogs to the new feathered additions of the family? The birds and the dogs will be free range.
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    If your darling dogs are already well trained to please and obey you,
    and that is key IMO,
    it shouldn't be much different to train them to leave the birds alone.

    Control their access to the birds until you are absolutely sure they understand not to harm them even when you are out of sight. Having secure confinement facilities in place for both the dogs and the birds would be a very good idea.

    How old are the dogs?
     
  3. Skylercarr

    Skylercarr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You need to show the dogs the chicks when they are young but only when you are their. I would do this a couple of minutes each day until they get used to them.
     
  4. hallen01

    hallen01 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have an Elkhound. She now knows that she is not supposed to chase or harass them in any way unless we say she can. And that is only to help herd our girls into their pen. They will walk into her pen and almost up to her and she just looks at them or she will follow them to try and sniff them.
     
  5. Chicken Egg 17

    Chicken Egg 17 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just had my chickens in there pen and i let my dog out and she just walks around the pen and watches them but i let them out to free range and she dont even seem interested in them
     
  6. Poop Cleaner

    Poop Cleaner Out Of The Brooder

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    I would leash and muzzle. Maybe even head collar so that i could distract her attention away immediately if needed. With my dog it is not overkill, but with another it may be.

    Bring the chicken to her, not the other way around. Reward good behavior- sniffing and leaving alone. Extinguish chasing biting etc.
     
  7. MaeRain

    MaeRain Out Of The Brooder

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    They are very well behaved normally, but they ARE dogs. I am worried that if they did by chance go after them I would not be able to stop them, they are very large.
     
  8. MaeRain

    MaeRain Out Of The Brooder

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    They are 4 years old. And very well behaved. However they are also very large. Haha
     
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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  10. Poop Cleaner

    Poop Cleaner Out Of The Brooder

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    You could leash them and muzzle them. Tie them to something or have someone hold the leash. Pick up the chicken and bring it to them to smell while you hold the bird. Don't put her down. After a short time (3 seconds) take it away. Do this over several times. This builds interest without letting them associate with chasing/fear/prey/predator. Don't give either dog or bird enough time to get excited/scared.

    It is best to work with a calm chicken if you have one.

    Another thing to do is to tie dog somewhere she can watch you work w chickens. This way she will learn that you accept them and may get the idea that they are part of the herd.

    If something does happen, use your corrective voice immediately.
     

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