We have an acre of land in Alabama and about 3/4 of it is wooded and not being used. The other 1/4 has our little home, shed, vehicles, greenhouse, etc. We also have 2 older (8yo) buff orps in a 200 sq ft enclosure; coop & run. We want to get about 10 started pullets and my original plan was to build a 1,000 sq ft enclosure (coop & run) with a fenced top as well but now I'm wondering if I should just build a Fort Knox coop and then a topless enclosure (all hardware cloth of course for the sides) that takes up the entire 3/4 of an acre that's unused. I don't plan to cut down any trees, so is it safe? I'm worried about trees falling onto them or hawks swooping in or other animals getting over the fence. I plan to attach a 1-2' hardware cloth skirt all around and build it about 6 ft tall. Or should we just stick with the 1,000 sq ft enclosure with a top? If we get a livestock guard dog, would it be safe to let the hens free range in a topless enclosure as long as they're locked up each night? What if the dog lives inside their enclosure and his dog house is right next to their coop? We're considering a Great Pyr or Maremma Sheepdog if they can handle a hot, humid climate. Thoughts on all? Thanks!