LGD for smaller predators (Border Collie?)

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by LDMOMMY, Jan 22, 2015.


    LDMOMMY Hatching

    Jan 20, 2015
    We are thinking of starting a coop in the spring and as such, I am researching breeds of dogs to use to protect the chikkies from predators. Up here, we would need to worry most about coons, possibly coyotes (though I've only ever seen ONE in my life), possible bobcats (also VERY rare), and fischer cats. We do have crows and turkey vultures and some eagles around though not dominantly so (save the crows)

    I know most of the LGD are fairly huge breeds and that makes sense in many areas. The only really big animal we may face would be a bear, in which case no dog would deter. But, they are black bears and usually just eat the apples and bird seed.
    That being said- what do people think about border collies? We've wanted this breed anyway because we admire the intelligence. I worry as a smaller breed, and also so intelligent, if it would get bored and "play" with chickens by nature.
    Anyone have experience with them?
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    IMO a border collie is too active with too high of a prey drive.
  3. wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Crowing

    Nov 10, 2010
    If you have the time to work with the dog and keep it busy, you shouldn't have a problem. Like you said, they are really smart. I had a friend that had border collies and raised pheasants, chickens, ducks and fancy pigeons. He worked hard with his dogs and trained them well. He had one big black and white male that was his "farm hand" and was always with him. That dog had free run of the entire property though, loved to eat horse poop out in the pasture, and always had a faint skunk smell to him. He killed a lot of skunks.
  4. Daneck

    Daneck Hatching

    Jan 20, 2015
    We don't have chickens yet but we have horses. Our LGD a Komondor Sheepdog keeps coyotes off the property and the raccoons, skunks stay away as well.

    We do either kennel her outside at night or, lately, bring her in the house to sleep.

    She is great with the cats as well...will cart them back to the barn :\ they hate that ;)
  5. Jrose

    Jrose Songster

    Jun 6, 2013
    Dogs are only as good as their owners. I had an Anatolian, super sweet with the birds, chased off anything that didn't belong, from skunks to elk to bobcats to people. My heeler/shepherd mix now does a fine job with the poultry and goats, wards off coyotes, skunks, coons, etc, even goes after the squirrels and catches the gophers. She's more bombastic than the Anatolian, but I trust her 100%. If you find a border collie whose personality you click with, work with them young, set your boundaries and expectations, and provide the dog with everything it needs physically, mentally, nutritionally, and spiritually, it will respect your wishes.
  6. Americano Blue

    Americano Blue Mush on!

    Apr 14, 2014
    Hello Spring
    My Coop
    I use my border collie to keep away the predators.
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I would not advise a Border Collie unless there is a dedicated person home full time. If you work, leaving them alone is often a recipe for disaster.

    I've had great luck with what I call BBDs....Big Black Dogs. Usually mutts from the shelter. I stay away from Pit Bull heritage as a matter of personal preference, but beyond that all's fair game. They're usually Lab based, with who knows what. They make great farmdogs, protective but not huge prey drive, decently smart but also a good tolerance for boredom and being left alone.

    Don't get bogged down on choosing the perfect breed. Instead invest your time and energy in training. Pretty much any dog (not a rat on a string, a real dog) can be a decent predator deterrent, and that's mostly what you're looking for. I honestly don't even expect my dog to take on a full grown coon...Those things are mean! But my dog patrolling and yes, barking from time to time, creates an environment the coons prefer to avoid. If the roadkill is any indicator, our area is infested with coons, but I've not lost a bird to any predator (besides my own darn barn cats) in over 5 years.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: