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Raising and training a Livestock Guardian dog

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by tbitt, Jan 9, 2013.

  1. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi all!!

    I would love if people who own any breed of LGD to help give tips and info to us newbies (me) to the breed.

    I know there are several people here who own LGDs but I am having trouble finding specific posts so, after sending a few PMs, I decided it might be best to start a general thread for it.


    I was (kind of still am) having troubles with predators taking my chickens and ducks so I knew I needed something in my yard to help deter it.

    I did some research on the best breeds to get for poultry flock protection. After that I was on the search for the best dog, for the best price….. I ended up with a Great Pyrenees ( Ialso read that a Anatolian shepherd would be a great choice, but there are not many in this area and I can certainly not afford the ones that are).

    So I am now an owner of a 12 week old GP. I have never owned this breed before (have owned hound dogs and herding dogs) and am determined to NOT mess up her training.



    Meet Lavi


    [​IMG]





    What are your thoughts on raising her?

    I do not have a house build for her yet so she is sleeping in a stall in the barn.

    I have never left her alone out there, I always leave a buddy with her (I have an Aussie, a hound dog and a Chinese crested). She is with the Aussie the most because he is the best dog, personality wise and the one who does NOT wander (darn hound dogs)

    She is NEVER outside with the chickens alone. She has been known to kind of chase them but only halfheartedly. I am not taking a chance at her actually touching one. So I scold her EVERY time she goes toward them with anything more than a walk. But I do allow her to go into the pen and wander the “grounds” with them. (is this correct?)


    I want her socialized; so I try not to lock her in the barn all the time when I cannot be with her to watch her sooooo I have been letting her come into the kitchen and hang with my other dogs. Is this going to get me into trouble later on?

    What are your thought about teaching her to stay in our yard? (we have 8.5 acres)
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  2. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    Great Thread, beautiful little girl you have. I sent some PMs with links to others. Will come back later to join in more
     
  3. Melabella

    Melabella Overrun With Chickens

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    Congratulations! So happy for you, that little girl is one lucky lady!

    Look up member aoxa... she has one, and can't say enough about her. She is helpful and has a load of pics that you will drool over. Her dog is growing up and I am sure she can give you many helpful tips.

    Cheers! Below is one of her pics... Gorgeous right?

    [​IMG]
     
  4. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, yes it is.



    I will look them up because I really want this dog to do a job and do it right. I have no problem learning from people who have been there before me!!!!!
     
  5. adjduncan

    adjduncan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Very cool, thanks for starting this thread. I also have a new Pyr puppy. He is about the same age as your puppy, tbitt. We named him Bumble for the abominable snow man in Rudolph the Christmas special. He has been the most awesome dog so far. Very smart and quick to learn commands.

    We raise Wire Fox Terriers, and they are NOT friends with the chickens. This Pyr is so sweet and calm compared to the Wires.

    We are not expecting him to be 100% livestock guardian, and are in the process of house training him as well as introducing him to the chickens. We are hoping for more of a family dog that gets along well with the birds, more than one who will stay with them exclusively. Hope that kind of happy medium is possible, as this is our first experience with this breed as well.
     
  6. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ummm adjduncan , where are the pics? [​IMG] LOVE his name. They do bumble around when they walk don't they?


    Isn't is funny how you get used to one (or two) breed of dog, know their quirks and what is expected of their personality, and think you know everything about dogs....then…… you get a new breed and realize you have a LOT more to learn!?


    Lavi is so smart (my Aussie is also smart) but she is a bit stubborn (very unlike my Aussie, but a bit like my hound). She has yet to find anything important enough to "hurry up" for. She is a bit mischievous (I know she knows what she is doing)




    And their fur..... the only thing I can compare it to is sheep's wool.

    GP people: Talk to me about grooming them as adults.
     
  7. adjduncan

    adjduncan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]
    Bumble

    [​IMG]
    His tail was docked by his momma when he was born. We think it makes him look even more like a polar bear.[​IMG]
     
  8. Pharmer Cathy

    Pharmer Cathy New Egg

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    Hi! Congrats on your new puppy! I have 2 LGDs guarding my goats. My chickens free range and are in and out of the goat pasture, so my dogs are familiar with them and /mostly/ don't bother them. They will protect them as they protect anything on our farm. But, they are not bonded to the fowl like they are with goats.

    Young LGDs need lots of supervision and careful introduction to their stock. I highly recommend joining the yahoo group workingLGDs http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/workingLGDs/
    there are many experienced and knowledgeable LGD owners who are very generous with help and advice. I hope someday to have a larger flock and introduce a dog to protect them, specifically.

    I'm listening to my 2 boys barking right now. Coyotes are howling in the upper hayfields and I am just beginning kidding season. Glad my boys are on the job!

    Best of luck to you!
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ugh Pharmer Cathy, I can't seem to figure out the Yahoo groups messages. It is not like normal message boards where you click the link and you are at the beginnign of the discussion.... I find them very frustrating.

    Like now for instance....I joined the group (after verrifying all kinds of info... [​IMG]) clicked on a link Searching for right LGD only to have the post say this:


    Paula in Nevada wrote, "If Einstein and Barbie got married, do you
    assume the children would have Einstein's brains and Barbie's looks, or
    the other way around??"

    Imagine the possibilities of an Einstein x Barbie.

    What would the children look like, if they were boys? Would they have
    Barbie's looks? Or would the girls have Einstein's brains? Or might some
    have the brains and looks of only one parent?

    Mary, chuckling in New York


    come to find out this is post #58833 of 58861. [​IMG]



    I will keep digging...but I would love it people here (a site I am familiar with) would give me (us) tips.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  10. Pharmer Cathy

    Pharmer Cathy New Egg

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    Ahhh, so sorry about the frustration. Yahoo groups is a bit different format than message boards. The link you clicked was part of a discussion (like a post on a topic on this board) someone started a few days ago. And that post was near the end of that discussion involving the consistency (or lack of) when crossing LGD breeds. If you look beneath that post you'd see the full thread from beginning to end.

    For your own education and information, I would start a new post and introduce your puppy, situation and objectives. I guarantee you'll get great info and help on how to train and introduce your new pup.

    In the mean time, allowing the pup to go with you into the chicken pen is a great idea as long as you can supervise her. Scolding her when she chases or gives inappropriate attention to chickens is also very good. Be stearn and let her know the birds are yours ("leave MY birds alone!!!). Socializing her is also very important. You'll need to handle her for vet visits, grooming and the like. There are some who believe that human contact should be minimal, but that makes for extremely difficult times when dogs need care for one reason or another. Funny thing is, these dogs are extremely personable. It's a shame that some folks have decided they should be 'untouched'.

    Sounds like you are on the right track. Keep in mind these dogs are smart, but independent, which some people take to mean stubborn. But that's not true. They have a job to do (protect their charges) and that is first priority for them. I look forward t hearing about her progress.
     
    1 person likes this.

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