At the risk of ticking people off and getting myself in trouble, I have to address all of the various posts I've read over the past several days regarding dogs getting at chickens and ending up shot or captured and dropped off in a different area--basically abandoned. There has got to be a better way. I'm from rural Maine, where you can legally shoot a dog that is going after livestock. Dogs are also not allowed to "run" deer and the warden can shoot them if they're caught. There's no second chance allowed. I mean, figuring that dogs get two bites on humans before being put down, that seems a little excessive to me, but that's what I grew up with. Having said that, I'm able to look beyond an antiquated attitude and evolve. First off, I absolutely hate when people don't keep their dogs contained in their yards. It's one thing if you like your neighbor's dog and it's okay if he/she wanders into your yard from time to time and is welcome. However, most of the time what I see where I live right now is dogs trotting along the side of our narrow and twisty roads, just asking to get hit, or dogs that get into the trash and scatter it all over my yard. This was before I had chickens. Now I worry about them. I have three dogs of my own. I love them like they are members of my own family. They are much like having kids since I don't have children--and like small children, dogs don't know what we consider "right" and "wrong" because they have their own codes, instincts, whatever, and it's our responsibility as humans to keep them in line. Same like kids...we have to teach them right and wrong and we have to protect them not only from other people, but from themselves. Kids might not realize how bad it is to play with matches or eat cleaning fluids, but we make sure they can't get into harm's way by locking dangerous items away. Even if you don't have kids, I bet you keep things that are harmful out of reach of any neighbor's kids who might wander over...at least, I do. Well, dogs aren't any different. To blame the dog for killing your chickens/livestock seems misguided. Dogs are animals with instincts and drives that can put them at odds with humans and who rely on us to keep them safe in a human world, just like our little kids rely on us to keep them safe in an adult world. And yes, it totally stinks when people choose to be irresponsible and we pay for it with dead livestock. I love my chickens, and if one got shredded by one of the many neighborhood dogs, I'd be furious. I wouldn't take it out on the dog, however. I'd deal with it like a civilized human being. I'd direct my anger at the owners. And I take precautions, like building a fence around the main part of my yard to keep my own dogs in and the neighbors' dogs out. To those of you who feel you shouldn't have to fence in your yard, why? Just because your chickens might not wander off your property doesn't mean a dog won't wander on, and you have no control over where/when it happens. Dogs are abandoned by uncaring owners (or angry chicken keepers, from what I've read on this forum) and are forced to survive by eating what they can catch. Dogs get loose from their tethers or yards, slip out the door when it's open, etc., and you can't watch your chickens every second of every day. Doesn't it make sense to protect these birds you claim to love instead of holding out over some principle? "I shouldn't have to keep my birds safe against YOUR dogs..." is nice in theory but to me seems a little irresponsible in practice. No matter how many times you rail against the neighbors or no matter how many dogs you shoot, there are always going to others. There are also coyotes, fox, racoons, skunks, etc. that can also cross into your unprotected yard and make off with one or more birds before you even notice. And here's the other half of the issue--just because you don't think that your chickens might not wander off your property, what if they do? They eat plants, they scratch up the dirt, they poop, they can be mildly destructive...and it's not fair if you expect everyone else to guard against their animals potentially going off their property to yours that you don't do the same. For pete's sake, build a fence. Mine keeps my dogs and chickens in and the neighbors' dogs out. It took me about six hours to build, cost less than $200 and I feel a lot better now that I've done it. Even if you don't like dogs at all, it's still not right to just take matters into your own hands and kill a dog for doing what dogs do. Instead, chase it off, take pictures of the destruction, call the police, capture the dog, take it to the local pound, whatever you have to do--but this attitude that your chickens are worth more than the dog's life and another family's happiness is no better than the negligent dog owner's attitude that he/she can let the dog do whatever it wants. You feel bad about losing your chickens? Of course you do! I'd be crying my eyes out. Now imagine how some family's kids feel when their beloved dog doesn't come home because you shot it. Yup, they're traumatized, they're crying their eyes out, and two families have their lives totally disrupted. Nobody wins. Revenge isn't a very civilized, human practice. Just because you can doesn't mean you should. I really like this community and would hate to leave, but honestly, I'm really torn right now after reading some of the hateful, angry posts people write. It's okay to be upset, angry, whathaveyou, but what I'm seeing goes well above and beyond that. If this post seals my fate, fine, I'll leave...but I just hope I made at least one person think. Thanks.