Introducing dogs to chickens?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by PrinceSandwich, Feb 18, 2011.

  1. PrinceSandwich

    PrinceSandwich Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 11, 2009
    Alberta, Canada
    As some of you may know, I've had big problems with coyotes. The plan was to get a Great Pyrenees puppy in a few years ( when I could afford it), but I would really perfer to get one sooner. Some friends of ours are moving to the city, and have two Golden Retriever X Great Pyrenees crosses, that they are looking for a new home for. They are 2 years old and have never seen chickens before, though they get along with other dogs and cats. Would it be possible to get these two used to the chickens, and on top of that, become guardian for them? They have already killed coyotes. Last May, we took in a dog that needed a home. We took him on trial to see if he would get along with our animals. Long story short he ended up killing 2 of our sheep! So I'm a bit nervous to take in any more dogs that weren't raised with the animals that I own. I'm I just asking for trouble here?
     
  2. TigerLilly

    TigerLilly I failed Chicken Math

    Jul 18, 2010
    Central Florida
    I think it can be accomplished with a lot of time & patience. The key is in the introduction & repitition. I recently got an aussie with the intent of using her for a farm dog. Due to an unforseen accident on her 2nd day here, she killed a chicken...training has been intense to the point of putting her on a leash & walking her around the run. If she starts to go after the secured chickens, she gets a firm NO & a yank on the leash. When she quit showing that kind of interest in the chickens, the next step was to have her on the leash while the chickens free-ranged. Same process. I do not totally trust her around the chickens yet, mostly because she did kill the one. But, she hasn't given me any other reason not to trust her. She is well supervised when she & the chickens are out together.
     
  3. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    Jun 15, 2008
    Depends on your skills as a trainer and how much time you can devote. In the beginning the dog should never be near the livestock without you having a way of correcting them immediately. Generally that means leashed. Never give them the opportunity to chase or especially kill. Keep reinforcing that they should not even look at the livestock. This is true even if you get a puppy. Supervise, supervise, supervise.... do not leave them alone until you think they are ready plus a few more weeks/months. Otherwise you may go through a lot of dogs and livestock finding one that shows no interest without putting in the time.
     
  4. PrinceSandwich

    PrinceSandwich Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 11, 2009
    Alberta, Canada
    Quote:I'm nothing close to a dog trainer, but I do have time. If I train them not to look at the animals, will he still become a guardian? I thought that a guardian dog must bond to the livestock, not avoid them. Don't ask me how to train them to bond to the livestock though! [​IMG] I ask this because I need them to be a guardian and not just a pet, I have a big enough feed bill as is!
     
  5. Barred Rocks forever

    Barred Rocks forever Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 9, 2009
    maryland
    were these two dogs originally pets ?
     
  6. PrinceSandwich

    PrinceSandwich Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 11, 2009
    Alberta, Canada
    Quote:Yes, but they seem to have the guardian instinct in them, because they bark at Coyotes and have even killed them before.
     
  7. Barred Rocks forever

    Barred Rocks forever Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 9, 2009
    maryland
    my dog whos a pet does not like being left out over night but maybe these dogs will dont be suprised if these dogs arent really interested in protecting livestock but killing yotes and since there older it may be harder introduceingthem to the stock imnot trying to but any rain on your parade sorry if i am
    Quote:Yes, but they seem to have the guardian instinct in them, because they bark at Coyotes and have even killed them before.
     
  8. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    Yes, but they seem to have the guardian instinct in them, because they bark at Coyotes and have even killed them before.

    Don't confuse territorial behavior with guarding behavior.

    Those dogs are too old to "bond" with any birds.
    You might be able to train them to IGNORE the chickens, and "guard" their territory, but it's really not the same behavior at all​
     

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