My family went to Texas for a reunion of my side of the family this weekend. We left on Wednesday and came back on Sunday. Our normal dog sitter was unable to take our dogs so we ended up leaving them in the backyard and my sil was going to come over twice a day to feed the dogs and collect eggs. My chickens have an enclosed run with wood slats across the top so they can't fly out. We haven't had any chickens get out of the run since we put the wood slats on the top about a year ago. On Friday we got a call from my sil that somehow, two of the chickens had gotten out and the dogs had killed them. She maintains that she closed the run securely and that the chickens must have either gotten out over the top or the door must have come open. In the 2.5years since we built the run, the door has never just come open. You can't just swing it shut though, you actually have to latch it. My guess is that she swung the door shut but failed to make sure it was latched. She refuses to take any responsibility for it and continues to say that the door must have been faulty . The next day she came over again and there was another dead chicken. She hadn't made sure that all the chickens were accounted for and one must have still been outside the run when she closed it up. Not only were the chickens dead, but she then just left a bowl full of dog food out to free feed the dogs. One of our dogs is very food aggressive with other dogs, hence the need to have someone come over and feed them twice a day. We explained many times before we left that he is food aggressive and that allowing them to have contact while there is food around will cause a fight. She figured it would be ok to leave it, that the non-aggressive dog would just back off when the other one snapped at him. I guess the scar on his face from a previous fight (it was quite some time ago, the dogs haven't gotten into a fight in many months now because we know how to handle the issue), wasn't a clear enough indicator. When we found out she just left the food out, we told her she had to go back and remove it or we would come back to more than just dead chickens. One of the dogs does have a healing scratch on his chest, probably from them fighting over the chickens. We ended up asking another friend to come pick up the dogs and keep them for a night until we got home just to make sure no more chickens would be killed if they weren't back in the run, and to make sure someone was feeding the dogs that understood how they have to be kept separate. My sil is a very nice person and I was very grateful that she was helping us out with feeding them, but I am really angry that she refuses to believe that the death of almost half my flock is due to her negligence. I have now lost half my chickens in the last month (one died earlier this month on a super hot day despite having ice blocks and a small pool in the run to help them cool off). I have no more EEs and my favorite Aussie hen is gone. I spent all that time, effort, and money to raise healthy laying hens and I have to try and start over just as winter is beginning. Great.