Introducing pets to chickens

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by crj, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. crj

    crj Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,596
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    Dec 17, 2009
    Rocky Point, NC
    Hi,

    I have been reading a lot of posts where chickens have been killed by family pets. Have any of you ever introduced your chickens to your dogs or cats when you get them? I mean, take a chicken and either bring it to the dog (I'm going to use dog for an example) or have the dog come to the chicken. Let the dog in the chicken pen to check out the smells. Most times if you do this you won't have a problem. You can have an aggressive dog and still teach it to tolerate a chicken. If they understand they are part of the family they will leave it alone.

    I let my dogs sniff, lick and push a baby chick around so they understand it's not theirs to eat. I have 3 dogs and not one of them has ever harmed a chicken. The chickens walk around my dogs as if they are a tree. I've also seen the dogs chickens and ducks sit together under the deck. Once in a while I will have 2 of the dogs chase a chicken but that's all they will do. I still watch carefully and will call the dog if need be. They are of course animals.

    If you are constantly telling your pet NOT to go near the chicken that just makes it more interesting to them and will go for the kill when you are not looking. It's like telling a child not to push that button. If you have a chance let your dog inspect a chicken but just be sure you can snatch the bird up if the dog tries to attack it. It's worth a try and you may save your chickens and piece of mind.
     
  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    I agree with you for the most part. My cats and dogs were exposed to my chickens from the get-go, and I've never had any problems from either. However, I've worked A LOT with my dogs around my birds (training), and my dogs are people pleasers. Both of those have to factor in too, not just exposure.
     
  3. crj

    crj Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,596
    18
    173
    Dec 17, 2009
    Rocky Point, NC
    teach1rusl
    I agree with you for the most part. My cats and dogs were exposed to my chickens from the get-go, and I've never had any problems from either. However, I've worked A LOT with my dogs around my birds (training), and my dogs are people pleasers. Both of those have to factor in too, not just exposure.

    teach1rusl, I agree with you too. I'm outside with all my animals most of the time. I know that I can leave my chickens, ducks and dogs out when I leave my house and not worry about them. I even accidentally left my dog in with day old chicks for about 1/2 hour not knowing she was in there. She's a very black dog even though she is big she is easy to miss in a dark room. Nothing happened to the chicks. Although, she does feel as if they are her pups. It's a good feeling that I don't have to worry about them in that manner. Even my horses are fine with the ducks, chickens and dogs. Sure, there are times when my dog or dogs will chase a chicken but they won't hurt it. I just call the dog and I get a look as if to say "What?" ...... lol. Everyday I hope dogs good behavior continues.

    I think for those who have to worry about pets meeting is just too stressful. Introductions are really a good way to make things work. I have a chicken in the middle of my floor and the dogs just walk around her. She has been sick for almost a month. I have one dog that will sit with the hen. I think people should give it a try. It might not be pleasant at the first try but keep trying, it will work. BTW, I don't have any cats but I'm sure it can work too. I've seen it at other farms.​
     

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