My seemingly peaceful dog has been eating my baby chickens.

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Windwhisper3r, Feb 23, 2017.

  1. Windwhisper3r

    Windwhisper3r New Egg

    Feb 23, 2017
    We only started getting baby chickens mid-late last year and at first it was all good, the only thing we had to worry about was the ratbag cat that would sneak around the yard and 'play with the chickens' as he'd jump at them without intent to actually chase or attack them, just to taunt. A few weeks maybe even a month later, we got a dog because my friend had 9 of them and needed to get rid of a few. She told us that the dog was nice, never bites, and is good around chickens as she used to work on a Poultry Farm. We thought it was a good deal and adopted her without hesitation. Altogether last year, 5 chicks were born and it was pretty great, mothers had a real purpose in life to follow their chicks everywhere they went and I even had the chance to be at the hand of their fury and aggressive protectiveness over their children. Then, one of the babies went missing. We looked everywhere for a body or even a limb, but we found nothing, this was the first baby death we ever had, but it didn't stop there. Another 2 out of the 4 remaining chicks went missing during the next 2-3 months. We just assumed street cats or Chicken Hawks were getting them, although we had never seen any cats other than ours and majority of the time he's inside so it couldn't have been him and we didn't really get Hawks in our area, it's not unheard of seeing them, but the chances of them taking the chicks were quite slim. The chickens didn't produce anymore babies for a while, that is until last week...
    Today I was out the back feeding the chickens, refilling the water, etc, when I saw the tiny, one week old Silver Laced Bantam chick. I was watching it thinking about how adorable it was. We're pretty comfortable with the dog being with them, as she has shown not aggression towards anyone - not even towards my 3 year old sister who tends to play a bit rough with her mouth and ears.
    Now, this is the bit I don't want to remember.
    The chick slipped through the little gap between the chicken pen bars and left it's two co-parent mothers back in the pen but it just stayed right outside. The mothers started completely losing their sh*t and were freaking out, their feathers were ruffled, their wings were spread out and they pretty much screaming. This was weird for me, as I have had chickens since I was like 8, and have NEVER seen that in my entire life. I looked at the dog who was right in front of the chick and didn't even have time to register what was going on when she suddenly lunged for it. She put the whole thing in her mouth and started chewing. I jumped on the dog and tried to get the baby out, but there was nothing I could do...... I just had to watch her eat it.
  2. TheKindaFarmGal

    TheKindaFarmGal True BYC Addict

    May 4, 2016
    Somewhere in the Universe
    She's a dog, plain and simple. Dogs are predators, they kill. Now dogs can be trained not to and some don't really care much, but that natural prey drive is there.

    Keep your dog away from your chickens. How old is she?
  3. clucknkook

    clucknkook New Egg

    Sep 24, 2016
    I have an anatolian shephard and this is my current problem as well. What did I do? I hired an E-collar trainer that showed me how to communicate with this tool. (You need that course to use this device as there is potential for negative instead of positive impact on the dog if you use it improperly) I put an a collar on him and sat outside with everyone as my girls free ranged. Deisel was fine until Ruby spooked and flew across the yard triggering the prey drive. I was able to change his mind about the attack on her with the push of a button and scolding. He started to chase at next flock outing but just as I had my finger on the button he decided to jump around her instead. Im told this training can be needed for over a year but they eventually get it. Trainer told me bored dog equals destruction so we wired 6 acres instead of 2 for his perimeter collar so he can be busy in the timber as well. So far so good.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2017
  4. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Flock Master Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    I don't trust even the most "trustworthy" dogs around baby chicks. (Especially a young one.) No matter how much I trust them with my adult birds, chicks are a different creature to them it seems. You need to work on teaching your dog that the babies are also off limits. Until you have done that, you need to keep them separated.
  5. peeper89

    peeper89 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2017
    keep dog where he cant get chicks keep chicks where they cant get out

    dog and chicken dont go to good somtime cat will be next so watch him to

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