What is a good guard dog for chickens?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by MissouriDogMom, Nov 8, 2019.

  1. MissouriDogMom

    MissouriDogMom In the Brooder

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    I'm interested in keeping an outdoor dog in a spacious pen right by the coop, but it would have to be a breed that is happy if left outdoors (except in severe weather) and also trustworthy around chickens. There is a dog house inside the pen and a tarp over the pen for the dog's comfort. I've had Pyrenees before, but I was wondering if there were other breeds that are particularly successful with chickens.
     
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  2. Ratchnick

    Ratchnick Chirping

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    Great pyrenees are breed as livestock guard dogs.
     
  3. Ratchnick

    Ratchnick Chirping

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    Sorry i guess i should have read better lol.
     
  4. MissouriDogMom

    MissouriDogMom In the Brooder

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    That's okay. Ha! I probably couldn't handle having a dog confined to the outdoors. They like being with their people, and I like being with my dogs. I just wondered if any particular breed was nonchalant about being with people and wouldn't mind hanging around out there with chickens. I have a Border Collie, but the space I'm talking about would be inadequate for his energy level.
     
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  5. Ratchnick

    Ratchnick Chirping

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    My grandma had a mutt from the pound, it was clearly part Golden Retriever, she was the best chicken guard dog i have seen. Nothing like a good dog to keep you chickens safe.
     
  6. MissouriDogMom

    MissouriDogMom In the Brooder

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    Thanks, that's another good idea.
     
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

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    A dog that barks and wants to get at predators is ideal. One that can handle temperature extremes is also good. My dogs do best work at night when they are able to patrol area around where chickens sleep. Regardless of breed, you may have to work on getting dog to not mess with chickens. I have used several breeds of dogs over the last few decades. Short-haired hunting dogs did fine but could have trouble during periods of extreme cold when the dogs were not otherwise active. My favorite of those a German Pointer that would even come into house and get me when he could not get at a raccoon or other critter he treed. Current efforts shifting towards English Shepherds that handle cold better and bark plenty. They are much more variable when it comes to driving off particular predators. My dogs need to be able to get out of pen to be effective, especially if predator can figure out a penned dog cannot get them.
     
  8. chickens really

    chickens really Crazy Call Duck Momma

    LGDs are probably your best bet. They were bred to live exclusively with livestock so don't get upset when handlers are not present. My Maremma is fantastic with all my animals.
     
  9. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

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    I could take you for a tour around my area where LGD's you advocate are used to guard poultry and penned livestock. The LGD's are generally poorly suited for tight confines. They need acreage to be consistent and then need time and a little work to get them safe around smaller stock like chickens. It is not just a breed issue.
     
  10. MissouriDogMom

    MissouriDogMom In the Brooder

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    All good tips, thank you. I'm down to the oldest hens who are no longer laying, so I want to have a good system for predator control in place before I buy any more in the spring. That plan is still pretty iffy.
     
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