My Loki is a four year old Lab/Husky cross who was raised in the city. He loves to run and chew on things, and thinks the whole world is full of nothing but games. This doesn't sound like the sort of dog you would let loose with your chickens. My puppy, though, wants the whole world to be his friend. He sat with the chicks while they lived in the brooder, and let them climb all over him when we let them out to play. When they moved outside, he spent a lot of time with them. They don't run from him, he gives them no reason to. I think his presence helps keep foxes and the like away. I should mention that he is pretty much a coward... especially in the dark. But till this weekend, his smell was enough to scare off any potential predators. Then yesterday I noticed him pacing the fence-line staring into the chicken pen. It was just turning to dusk, and half the birds were already in the coop. He was intent, and troubled. I called to him, and he ran to me, but then ran back to the gate, wanting me to open it. Never one to doubt his intuition (he is very empathic, even for a dog) I complied. He ran straight to the coop door and stared at it. I said "It's ok Loki, I am sure it is just full of chickens" because I could hear calm, quiet clucks from inside. But he would not let it go so I opened the top door and there, staring me in the eye, was Crimson, my BLRW roo, his head and neck dripping with blood. A LOT of blood. Enough that we were not sure he would make it through the night though we stopped the bleeding as soon as we could. Really, it was a minor wound (a large flap of wattle torn, probably by a rival rooster) but there were puddles of blood - not to mention drenched neck feathers. (by the bye he's fine now, just a little dirty looking) I carried this bird, blood splattering over my clothes, right past my dog who looked up, concerned, but made no move to smell or taste him (and my neighbors have the audacity to suspect him of killing one of their sheep!) So then, only a few hours later, I was awakened by a horrible squawking. As we feared, the scent of blood drew predators closer, and they were after my birds. Loki woke up from a sound sleep and was off the bed and out the door before I was even sure I had heard it. In fact, what convinced me I HAD heard it rather than dreaming it was the fact that he got up. By the time I was up (at 3:30 AM) and had my flashlight in hand, My valiant mutt had chased whatever it was off and was circling the terrified hen with his eyes scanning the darkness, ready to leap between her and whatever would emerge from the shadows. When I arrived on the scene, he loosened up some, but gladly went with me through the gate to check on the others. Archie was sleeping outside (still don't know where, cursed hen) and I wanted to make sure the coop was still secure. The moment I opened the gate, Loki bolted into the darkness (chasing something?) and then began searching the entire property for more threats. The coop was fine, no signs of attack. Archie had run off into the bushes and hid, so I did all I could on a work night; I went back to bed. It was then 4 AM, I was full of adrenaline, and worried for my birds. As I finally drifted off to sleep again, I occasionally heard the jingle of tags as the dog patrolled the yard. He didn't come back to nap on the bed till the sun had begun to lighten the sky. In the light of day I surveyed the feathery mess in my yard. I don't think she would have survived another minute without him there, and the attacks surely wouldn't stop at just one foolish hen. My dog is a Hero. At least I think so. Even if he looks dopey, I love him!