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My increadably bad luck and bad dogs....

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Jay13, Dec 15, 2008.

  1. Jay13

    Jay13 Songster

    Nov 19, 2008
    Central NC
    Ok, I need some help with this guys. We *just* got our chickens (21 of them) yesterday paid $4 each for feathered out birds so that we didn't have to worry about brooding our first batch of chickens. We got them home to the coop I had spent days on. Went inside the house for 15 min and came out to 21 dead birds and 3 very guilty looking dogs!

    I dont' know how but they managed to get *through* the chicken wire and had a feild day. Needless to say, I had to control our impulse to just get rid of the dogs as they don't contribute to the table but the chickens are supposed to. Has anyone else had this problem with their dogs? How did you handle/solve it? Is there anything that I can do to train my dogs to leave them alone? or now that they have a taste for chicken am I screwed?

    Thanks for your help,


    Oh, does anyone in the central NC area have feathered out birds for sale? I seem to be in the market again.

  2. lorieMN

    lorieMN Songster

    Apr 19, 2008
    chicken wire is meant to keep chickens in..not anything out,sorry about your loss but know you know better for next time,you need to put up better fence to keep predators out,and some training on the dogs wouldnt hurt,but next time it may be some other dogs so you will need to put up stronger fence.
  3. Teach97

    Teach97 Bantam Addict

    Nov 12, 2008
    Hooker, OK
    I have had that problem...lots of advice about killing dogs...no I didn't not their fault besides I have had my dog longer than I have had my kids and the oldest boy is on his third dog and he is only 9! Not about to kill that one. I made the dog run more dog proof with electric fencing...I even restrained myself from pushing the dogs into the fence. Best of luck with them and I have some featherd out chicks in OK!! I know I am of no help!
  4. I am sorry about your losses. That's the pits!

    You need more substantial wire along the bottom in addition to chicken wire. I use the 4' no-climb horse fence which is nearly indestructable. Other people use welded wire...

    The horse fence keeps predators out, the chicken wire keeps chickens in. Chicken wire will not keep many predators out. Almost any hungry critter can chew or break through it somehow.

    If I were you, I'd also put up an electric fence. The low wire at about 6" off the ground, the next wire at 12", and maybe another one up higher and let some dog noses get sizzled. In addition, you need to put the dogs on a leash and work with them, training them LEAVE IT and make sure they know what behavior is expected from them. There are a lot of good training posts, which you can find with search.
  5. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    I am soo sorry you lost your birds, and it has to be worse since your own dogs did the deed.

    First of all, chicken wire only keeps chickens in, it will not, I say will not keep predators out. Especially dogs, coons, etc. So you will need to put at the very least some 2"x4" welded wire over the chicken wire in the run. I say over, because leaving the chicken wire there, too, will keep critters like coons from reaching through the wire and grabbing somebody. Then, to train the dogs, I would put electric wire around the entire enclosure at about 1' intervals up to about 4' high. Then put pieces of hot dogs on the wire just before you turn it on. The hot dogs will direct the dogs noses to the wire and once they've been bitten a time or two I guarantee they will stay away from the chicken enclosure. However, some dogs are very smart and can tell when the wire is hot and when it's not so I'd leave it on whenever the dogs are out, unless you are out with them. And if there are children to be concerned about the hot wire, and they are old enough to teach about electric wire, then leave it on. If they are not old enough, then an adult needs to be outside with them anyway. imho. [​IMG]

    This should stop the dog problem so your birds will be safe but you will not be able to free range if the dogs are out. Best of luck!
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2008
  6. Jenski

    Jenski Songster

    Jun 17, 2008
    Middle Tennessee
    Oh, if I only had a nickel for every "dog-kills-chicken" post on this forum. I would have enough money to hire someone else to read this.

    You may want to do a search on this topic, but the bottom line is that chicken wire keeps chickens in, and nothing out. A dog would have no problem walking through that stuff. It's a shame you had to find this out the hard way; they really should not sell that junk and imply it is good to use for penning chickens.

    I would suggest you search the forum for coop/design solutions, and make sure you have a predator-proof pen before beginning again. Prevent the heartache! Again, I am so sorry you went through this. There are lots of folks here who can help you; I hope you will stick with this great hobby and try again.

    (We used 1/2" hardware cloth on a pen made of 2 x 4s, with paving stones around the bottom to prevent dig-ins since it is near a patio.)
  7. rizq

    rizq Songster

    Oct 9, 2008
    Our big chicken pen is chicken wire (the smaller is heavy gauge 2x4 field fence with chicken wire around the inside of the bottom to keep the smaller birds in). We have a couple electric wires run around the outside of the big pen. If, for some reason, chicken wire is your only option, you can put up an electric fence to help with the dogs. Once most dogs get a good zap on the nose, they never come back. This is not foolproof ... some dogs could probably still get in if they really wanted too ... but it is better than plain chicken wire.

    We found (after building the big pen) that the 2x4 wire really isn't very much more expensive than chicken wire. It's only an extra $5 or $10 per 100 feet here. I build everything out of the field fence now ... it is much stronger.

  8. Jay13

    Jay13 Songster

    Nov 19, 2008
    Central NC
    For the majority of our chicken run the chicken wire is in ADDITION to feild fence that we put up, it was this ONE spot that was as a patch until we could get something up tomorrow. ::: sighs ::: I just didn't realize how fast dogs could do that kind of damage. I was out supervising them except for about 15 min. My dogs must have thought it was open season on them since I wasn't there. They were very good about leavnig them alone while I was there, its when I turned my back...It would have been an easier lesson to take if it were just 1 or 2 birds instead of the whole flock of 21.

    Live and learn I guess.
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2008
  9. Anny

    Anny Songster

    Apr 24, 2008
    Detroit Michigan
    I'm so sorry for your loss. Sadly chicken wire isn't really build to keep out predators but just to keep chickens in.

    Sadly alot of people have been having dog issue lately. I knew building my coop I have stray dogs around. So my run is a chain link dog run, with harware cloth around the bottom. The chain link fence is strong enough to hold up to a dog charging at it.
  10. cparian

    cparian Songster

    Nov 5, 2008
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Sorry about your luck. Total Bummer.

    I free range my chickens. I have a dog with a high prey drive. He killed one of my chickens & I saved 2 others from his attacks. Like yours he is fine when you are there but cannot be trusted on his own. I have used a shocker collar on him giving him a jolt from inside the house when he thought he was not being watched but, I still would not trust him unsupervised. He just can't control himself when they run. He now is tied when the chickens are out. I also have two other dogs that could care less about the chickens & help watch over them. I just think some dogs can't help themselves.

    After reading many stories of dog attacks on this forum it seems it is something you can try your best to prevent, but may happen no matter what you do. Don't beat yourself up too bad, your definatly not the first person whose own dogs killed thier chickens.

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