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teaching an old dog new tricks

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Mrs Oblong, Sep 10, 2014.

  1. Mrs Oblong

    Mrs Oblong New Egg

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    Sep 5, 2014
    At first I was full of optimism about getting our 11 year old dog used to our pullets. Training was going well.. He was relaxed even sleeping while they were in the same yard and he was on the lead. Then one chicken found its way into his fenced yard and we found it dead. Further fencing and further separation has ensued.. all peaceful. Will I ever train him not to go for them? Locking everyone away from each other was never really my ideal.
     
  2. Pollygurl

    Pollygurl New Egg

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    Aug 18, 2014
    Pace, Florida
    Our neighbors chickens got into our yard at first they didn't seem to care. Then a few weeks later he killed a hen that got into our yard. After that their rooster was in our yard and he was chasing him. This is our friends dog that I keep when he works offshore. Since he is getting a roommate I won't be keeping him anymore but I do not plan to trust him without being their with our babies.
     
  3. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    Training an adult dog who has never been around chickens can take more time and effort then raising a pup around chickens. A smart older dog quickly learns that chickens in their run are boring so he may ignore them, but let one of them be seen outside the fence or running around and game on. So in that regard what you need to do is MORE contact, not less. Daily, restrained exposure is how I raise my ranch pups to be good farm dogs. They go right into the pens with me among the chickens to do chores etc but pup is on a leash attached to me at all times so I can quickly nip bad behavior in the bud and reward good behavior, i.e. ignoring the birds. This goes on for as long as it takes for pup to get bored with it all. Chickens become old news and pup learns that I expect him to leave the birds alone. He then graduates to running along with leash dragging, provided he has by then proven willing to listen to me even in the face of great temptation lol. With the breeds I keep this usually comes pretty easy, with some dogs it may take a long time and some dogs will never be trustworthy around chickens. Breed has influence but temperment and training are key.
     
  4. Pollygurl

    Pollygurl New Egg

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    Aug 18, 2014
    Pace, Florida
    That is true but my dog over time may be alright supervised but trust me he would prefer to live on the couch. My friends dog on the other hand may have also killed one of my cats. I pretty much have raised this dog since he was a puppy. He only went home every few months for a week or so. He was fine in the house but out in the yard I guess was a different story. I will introduce them slowly but I don't think since he killed the neighbors chicken I want to take a chance and I only have him for two more months. Your idea sounds like a great approach. Will do that with him. We like to be outside alot I hate to deprive him of being with us.
     

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