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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    Thanks for the reply Pharmer Cathy.

    btw - I think I have to learn about the independent thing. This girl sure is it! Like today, she was on the other side of the horse pasture, laying down pulling at a clump of grass. I call her to "Come" and she looks up....but goes right back to pulling the clump of grass. I had to walk halfway across the pasture to get her to realize I meant it. I even resorted to the mean voice. Once she started toward me I gave her a verbal "good girl" and turned and walked toward where I wanted her. I was shocked as all get out that she continued to follow me. Once we got to where I was to begin with, I stopped and petted her.

    Boy oh boy is this different then my Aussie.
     
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  2. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh and here is a picture of Lavi from today. (The pic above is the day we brought her home, she was 7 weeks old, she is about 12 weeks now)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2013
  3. Pharmer Cathy

    Pharmer Cathy New Egg

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    Pretty girl! I love the fuzzy poofballs. They turn into giant poofballs, lol! If I can figure out how to upload pictures from my iPad, I'll post one of my boys. They are 3/4 Maremma 1/4 Great Pyraneese. That discussion about Barbie x Einstien describes the physical characteristics of my boys. They are from the same litter and from a distance look the same, one being slightly bigger than the other. The bigger is built like a GP and his head is more GP shaped. The smaller is more Maremma like, including head shape. Both are big white fluffy 'puppies'. They are 7 yrs old, over 100 lbs and still bounce around when we enter the goat pasture.
     
  4. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pharmer Cathy,

    What does your boys "guard"?
     
  5. EmAbTo48

    EmAbTo48 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great Thread! We lost out last LGD GP about 2 years ago. I have been looking for over a year for the correct breeder for one and finally have found a woman 2 hours from us that I think as started out her pups correctly and will be getting our new GP this fall! So excited! We are debating on getting 2 at this point.

    Anyways, you have started out Lavi correctly by just keeping her in the barn. She needs to learn her surroundings and be introduced daily to each and every animal you own and that she eventually will become to love and want to protect.

    As for training basic commands are a must. Teaching come, sit, stay, etc are your first priorites like any other dog a person will own. She needs to learn you are in charge no matter what and that she needs to respect your wishes.

    I agree with other PP that GP are very gentle "giants" they need to learn to protect their property in a way that still respects you and your visitors you don't want a GP to learn that people coming over and terrible things because they are on your property! You need to socialize this dog with other humans and other dogs. You want a dog you can trust to not jump on children.

    Like I said the BASICS are what is needed right now. Once you have them down. Then comes the learning of being a guard dog to your livestock. We taught our GP his boundaries by walking him around our property twice a day. First on leash then he as he got a bit older he would stay with me and we would walk the fence line. He was never allowed outside of our fence line and was scolded if he tryed. He would run that fence line daily it was amazing to watch!

    As for introductions to your animals we used "No Touch" 2 simple words. He learned that he was not allowed to touch nor chace any animal when he was a pup. He would lay with our chickens lol! He learned to love each of the animals as if they were is friends.

    Your pup is beautiful! Can't wait to read more as you train her. It took our GP about 10 months to really get things into gear and he continued to learn and grow every year. :)
     
  6. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the reply EmAbTo48,

    I have not had a dog for this type of work so I am hoping I am not way outside my knowledge here.


    Lavi is a very friendly dog. I can not imagine her getting to standoffish with strangers...but then again this is my first experiance with this breed. Would you suggest I take a basic obediance class with her, to get those commands down and to get her more exposed to other dogs?


    I do own other dogs, so she is used to them.

    I do find it is much much harder to set asisde time to work with just one dog. But I suppose I should put the other dogs up and work with her more on some commands.


    I like the "No Touch" command. I think I need to start using that one. Right now I use NO for everything, I think it would be smarter to use a different one when she is folloeing the ducks/chickens.

    I need to work on the boundries more! Good idea!


    She is a GREAT farm chore dog. She follows along with us whenever we are out doing chores. I love it! My Aussie Does not like to go out behind the horse lot, so this is nice to have company. LOL
     
  7. Pharmer Cathy

    Pharmer Cathy New Egg

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    tbitt,

    They guard goats. Finally able to post some pics! Fired up the old laptop. So the pics are about 2 yrs old, but the boys look about the same. Inigo, on the left is the more Maremma looking of the 2. Fezzik is bigger, with a blockier, GP head. Both are big fluffy dogs. They each have different attitudes towards their job. Inigo is very closely bonded with the goats and will mostly stay close to them. He will also move them (mostly with barking) to a place he feels is safe if there is something he is concerned about. Fezzik is the border patrol He walks the boundary most of the night, barking when he thinks there is something needing a warning. The 2 work very well together.

    One thing you should be aware of with these types of dogs is they are somewhat territorial and like to expand it as much as possible. So, you need secure fence and gates. They like to wander and some are great escape artists. Fezzik, being the biggest, escapes through some of the slimmest spaces. I've watched him put his head and front legs through the rails of a gate and turn his body sideways to fit his chest through. Incredible!

    Sorry it took so long for a picture and response. The laptop screen doesn't work and has to be hooked up to tv or monitor. :/

    Cathy

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  8. tbitt

    tbitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Darn on the wandering thing. I am (was) hoping with a lot of boundary work that she would learn to keep in her yard. Our place is not fully enclosed so I might have to work a lot harder then I was first thinking.

    Thanks for the reply. Your two are very pretty!

    Every bit if info helps.



    I am a bit shocked that more owners are not giving tips.....because I know there are a lot more owners here on BYC.


    As Lave grows I know I will come upon things....I'll just keep posting! [​IMG]
     
  9. EmAbTo48

    EmAbTo48 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The more exposure to things the better. As for boundaries our GP never left our property it never wanted to wonder since that would mean leaving his "herd" to danger which a GP is trained to protect his "herd" till the end. As for territorial I agree they want to protect which is why basic commands and lavi knowing he must listen to you is good with visitors.

    But yes one on one with the dog is best you don't want it to learn bad habits from other dogs nor see them as a leader/ teacher then you.
     
  10. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    I'll try to chime in with more info when I get more time. I have five Gps and have many chickens from JG to Serama....geese, ducks, guiena, swan, cranes,emu, peafowl, pheasants, etc and most of them are good with all of them...one female and one younger one I have to correct on some things. I also have fainting goats, mini cattle, mini horses, horses, llama and alpaca....so they have been exposed to many animals...as I type they are going off at something they see on our 16 acres......
     

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