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One of our dogs killed 4 of our chickens today...

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by SlipsWife, Mar 24, 2013.

  1. SlipsWife

    SlipsWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Odessa, Texas
    We had our 8 pullets out in their coop/run. They are a month old. The dogs have done great with ignoring them. We've left and left the dogs outside and they've left them alone, until today. We were home but had left our 'guard dog' (he does not like anyone other than us) outside because my son had a friend over. My husband had just checked on the chicks a couple of hours before. The dog went to an area that the fence wasn't the strongest (it was more of a temporary run, we are going to put in a better one in a couple of weeks) and somehow managed to disconnect it from the fence and let them out THEN killed 3 of them, severly injured one and I can't tell if the other 4 are injured or just scared to death. I had to help one pass and it didn't go as smoothly as I would have like. [​IMG]

    Now he's going back over to the coop (we've closed them off in the coop w/a light until the new run is built) and digging at the door and then went over to where he damaged the fence and tried going into the run. Is he now never going to leave them alone?! He just killed them. Didn't play with them, there were NO feathers anywhere, the only way I could even tell what he did was the injured one had blood on her but none of the others did. He was sitting in the driveway when I went to let him back in. He had stopped and left the others alive for whatever reason.
     
  2. V-NH

    V-NH Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 24, 2013
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    Doesn't sound like a dog I'd want around my chickens.
     
  3. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    That outcome was not good but not end of world for getting dog to be trustworthy. Dog was frustrated and found an outlet that was not helpfull. Pen needs upgrading, other birds will recover quickly, and you have work ahead to get dog in a better state of mind. Additionally you are challenging dog with most difficult chicken lifestage. Even when all progresses as planned with my dogs, a bird or two is harmed / killed before dog truely settles into role. Anything that changes the dogs emotional state must also involve reinforcement that chickens are not to acted against.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. llandry

    llandry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm so sorry for you. I have two dogs and one of them would absolutely kill a chicken if she had access to them. W let them out after we first built our run and the one dog was going bananas to get to them. I can only give my opinion which is, out of sight out of mind. My one dog knows the chickens are out back but does not pace the back of the house to get out to them. Even when i take her for a walk she doesn't pull to get to them? If i let her out back though she would run straight for them. My point is, i think your dog will forget about them when she's in the house but when she's in the back by them she'll want to get them.

    I'm sure someone here has been in the same situation as you so hopefully they'll be able to give you advice.
     
  5. westernmainecoop

    westernmainecoop Out Of The Brooder

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    I had a dog that was guilty of this. We let him out and run free as we live in a rural area. This was fine for quite a while until he ran up the road one day and killed two of the neighbors chickens. So we started hooking him to the run. He got loose from one of the kids when they went to hook him out another day, went down the road and killed 8 of another neighbors chickens and a few of ours. Thankfully my neighbors are understanding and we were able to make good on their losses. It was obvious to me he had found great enjoyment in his new "game".Sadly I had to find him another home, as I did not want to take the chance. I have two other dogs, they don't bother the chickens. They did knock over the improvised brooder a couple years ago and eat the chicks in it but they leave the big birds alone.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2013
  6. SlipsWife

    SlipsWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 10, 2013
    Odessa, Texas
    The run will be upgraded before the chicks are let out of the coop again (it's a large shed so there's plenty of room for the 4 of them, we have others in the brooder right now but it will be awhile before they can go out).

    Do you have any suggestions on what we should do to teach the dog the chickens are not his prey? I would never trust them 100% but I never thought he'd actually 'go after' them in that fashion. We have 2 other dogs, a great dane and a small mutt. The small dog tried 'playing' with one of the chicks when we introduced them once outside when the chick went to flutter its wings. We held him down and piled the chicks on top of him for a few minutes and he wants NOTHING to do with them anymore. The great dane might hurt someone if he steps on them but he's scared of them too and stays away or in the house on his couch.

    My husband wants to tie a dead chicken to the offenders neck and leave it for a few days. I'm not against that completely but he wasn't here when it happened and that option isn't available anymore. I have thought about putting his kennel in the coop tonight and making him sleep in there for a couple of weeks but I don't think the chickens can handle that right now. I'm not against a shock collar. I had hoped they chickens would be able to free range (under supervision) a few times a week but this has me second guessing that...
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2013
  7. llandry

    llandry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm missing what the purpose of tying a dead chicken to the dogs neck would do except be completely repulsive. I also don't think putting his crate in the coop would solve anything either. I know you're anxious to find a solution but i don't think these are it. I was going to suggest the shock collar but was afraid of negative responses. I've used one for a variety of behaviors with success. After a short period of time you rarely have to actually use the shock. One of my dogs wears the collar and there isn't even batteries in it.
     
  8. SlipsWife

    SlipsWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Odessa, Texas
    His parents said to do the chicken thing. They did it years ago on one of their dogs and he never messed with them again. The thought of it doesn't sit well with me and I don't think this dog would 'get' the point anyways! The only thing I think the kennel in the coop might have help with is a dominance issue but he's hard headed an probably wouldn't get it then either! I'm thinking about having a buried shocking fence (the kind where the dog wears the collar and if it gets with in a certain distance it shocks him). I'm not huge on just an electrified fence because we do have kids, even though they are old enough to know to stay away, and accidents happen and I'd hate for one of them to get shocked. I got shocked a few times stepping over them as a kid and even though they didn't hurt to bad I'm still scare of them. lol

    I hope he doesn't push this issue to far. He was here before the chickens, we did get him as a guard dog (even though our great dane is 180lbs no one ever seems scared of him...) and I'm afraid he wouldn't be able to be rehomed but if we do everything 'right' to keep him from them and he makes it an issue I don't know what we'll have to do! I'd hate to have to buy a dog run/outside kennel to keep him in, he'd be miserable. So stressful! (and our fault for not having the run finished so this might not have happened).
     
  9. clintdaniels83

    clintdaniels83 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a dog that ate chickens. One mean rooster stopped that problem. Now she acts like they ain't there.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. pagumby

    pagumby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is a great subject. Are there any dog trainers out there that can give us any suggestions? I have a chocolate lab that will be 2 years old in April. He will chase the wind when it blows as well as try to go up trees after birds and squirrels. We let him near our 14 (3 and 4 week old chicks and our 8 ducklings) on a daily basis COMPLETELY under my guarded supervision while they are in my hand. We have a wading pool for the ducks in the house (yes they are spoiled) and he will watch them closely and lick his lips. He is told no repeatedly so that he gets the point that they are not his. I will never trust him outside alone with them. He listens well inside but once he goes outside he turns on his selective hearing and turns dumb as a brick. I would like some pointers on how to deter him once they are out in the pen.
     

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