Other Critters

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by desertgirl, Mar 29, 2009.

  1. desertgirl

    desertgirl Roo Magnet

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    Mar 29, 2009
    Albuquerque,NM
    I've noticed from your tag lines that many of you have multiple critters living with you and your chickens. How do you free range them? Once they are big enough to free range, can they hold their own agaist, say a curious dog or a cat (with an admitted rap sheet when it comes to crimes against birds...[​IMG]).

    Or do I need to sequester the other animals while the ladies do their thing?[​IMG]
     
  2. redoak

    redoak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Russia, NY
    We free range our chickens. Our cat left our chickens alone once they were about 8 weeks old. Our 2 dogs have gotten better over time. Our Aussie likes to hang out with the chickens and runs away from them if they get aggressive with him. (ie him getting too close sniffing). Our pit bull ignores the chickens but she gets really interested if one gets startled and starts flapping her wings really fast. The chickens for the most part ignore our dogs, but if a neighbors dog is near they squack up a storm and run for cover or their coop.
     
  3. azelgin

    azelgin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    S.E. AZ
    It's really going to depend on how your animals react to your chickens. We have a cat that is a great hunter: birds, rats, cottentails and even a full grown jackrabbit. He hates the chickens and avoids them whenever possible. He probably would take a chick, but, we kept them locked up until they were about 10 weeks and he wasn't interested anymore. One of our dogs (a Bullterrier) could care less. The other (mini wiener dog) need a little training. She got shocken by the electric fence while trying to get in the run and no longer likes chickens. The mules tried to stomp the chickens, but have finally given up: the chikens refuse to run in a predictable manner and are hard to hit. That's how it all worked out for us. [​IMG]
     
  4. swampducks

    swampducks Overrun With Guineas

    Feb 29, 2008
    Barton City, MI
    If you poke around here on some of the boards you'll see posts ranging all over the place. Some people's dogs are killers of chickens and can't be trusted and others are pussy cats. My 2 labs don't touch them and can all be together unsupervised. But a neighbor's dog came over a couple weeks ago and killed a duck and a chicken while I was inside the house.

    If your dog is known to kill you may have a much harder time letting them out together and certainly not without you being there.

    Now if it was my dog and I had the dog first and then got the chickens the dogs get priority and the chickens would free range only after the dogs got to do their thing even if they wanted to sun themselves all day. Others say their chickens would get priority. Even now though, I don't let the chickens free range every day. Depends on the weather and I have to be home. I'd never let them out if I was away.

    So I'd say it depends on how much effort you want to put into it I guess. Sorry if I wasn't much help.
     
  5. desertgirl

    desertgirl Roo Magnet

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    Mar 29, 2009
    Albuquerque,NM
    LOL![​IMG] I just told my husband about the chickens not running in a manner conducive to mule stomping, and he had a real nice chuckle over that!

    Thanks for the great feedback. Our pup is only 10 moths (Golden mix), so I think we could introduce/discourage him pretty easily. I guess the cats would probably figure it out after one or two run is with a big enough chicken (we'd just eed to protect the little ones). Good to know, thanks!
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2009
  6. Sooner

    Sooner My kids Mom!

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    I have two dogs that must stay in the back yard completely away from my chickens, if they get out they will kill every chicken they can get to. I have had a few chickens that decided the grass was greener on the other side and flew into the back yard....very few survived that. Number one my roo got his name that way. They had him trapped between the fence and the hotwire, they plucked every tail feather but one, thus the name. My other dog is out with the chickens, doesn't bother them really. The hen will actually gang up on her and chase her. My horses don't care one way or the other about the chickens. My cat was a kitten, my hens full grown, she would stalk them but was afraid of them. Now I have hatched chicks this weekend, she stares over the top at them and I am sure if given the chance she would eat them.
     
  7. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    You have to know your animals. My irish wolfhound now guards my chickens, yet she picked up a week old chick. She didn't hurt it and (knowing her probably) didn't mean to, but still.
    My border collie is kept seperate from the chickens because he wants to play with them to death.
    My barn cat cannot absolutely CANNOT be trusted around my full grown chickens. Her motto in life seems to be if it moves, I'll kill it. She now resides in the house during the day while the chickens free range and is put out at night to do her prowling. She is inadvertently protecting the chickens anyhow, since one of her favorite places to hunt is in the chicken yard after dark.
     
  8. desertgirl

    desertgirl Roo Magnet

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    Mar 29, 2009
    Albuquerque,NM
    So I could keep everyone inside ad let the chickens out for a few hours, then when it gets dark the chickens will go into their coop, and the rest of the family can wonder outside again? And the chickens really go into their house willingly? I have a visual of me chasing chickens around my little yard, and although it is vaguely comical, it would get old very quickly.
     
  9. azelgin

    azelgin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 18, 2008
    S.E. AZ
    Quote:If, you lock them up in their coop for a couple of weeks before letting them free range for the first time, they'll put themselves to bed. We've had only one, out of 40+, decide not to go back to the coop in the last year of free ranging.[​IMG]
     
  10. cimarron

    cimarron Chillin' With My Peeps

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    cool mules!!!

    my dog was a chicken killer as an unruly rescue pup, was redeemed through me training her, fell off the wagon and straightened up again. now i live at another place with my own chickens, and our flock has a covered run to themselves. we are going to start letting them out in an enclosed area of the yard but not with the dogs unless they were supervised. that way everybody lives, everybody's happy = )
     

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