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Wanting to get a dog to protect.

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Raggedyroad, Jul 5, 2016.

  1. Raggedyroad

    Raggedyroad Chirping

    Feb 4, 2015
    On our small one acre farm we have 2 dwarf goats, 3 lambs and 9 chickens. We plan to add a few more sheep next year. Our English Setter is awesome with all of them but she is getting on in age and probably won't be with us for more than another 3 - 5 years. We would like to get a new dog or puppy so that she has the time and energy to help train the newbie. What breed will be good at protecting along with having herding instincts and yet not want to eat my free range chickens. I have been looking at Healers, Border Collies and Aussies but I'm uncertain how they will be with my hens. We have hot summers and cold winters here in Utah. I want a dog that will stay outside day and night to protect. The only downside to my Abby dog is that she has always been an inside dog and refuses to be out for long periods of time. Any advice on a new breed or mixed breed?
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2016

  2. carlf

    carlf Chirping

    Jul 2, 2016
    Mobile, AL
    My lab is great with the hens and she stays outside all year. But our winters are not that cold. And she has no herding instinct.
  3. [​IMG]

    My little flock protector grew up around chickens. She is a lab/border collie mix. That border collie side of her really shines, as she has become very tuned to the normal activities and sounds of the flock. And that lab side of her has given her great hunting instincts that she uses to good effect when dealing with the few predators that we have around here. My biggest concern, predator wise, has been neighborhood cats. But she has also cornered a raccoon, and brought me out into the yard, when a Cooper's Hawk was snatching doves off the bird feeder.


    Basically, if there are strange sounds coming from the flock...day or night...she's right on it. And if we are around...she'll come get us.

    It's not easy training a flock protector, but if you feel comfortable working with and training dogs, I would highly recommend taking the effort. I really don't know what we would have done without her.

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