Who was the killer?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by elite8, Dec 23, 2010.

  1. elite8

    elite8 Out Of The Brooder

    May 16, 2010
    40/42 North Carolina
    I have a dog named Lucy. She is 3/4 lab and 1/4 shepherd and 9 yrs old. She has always been a predator in the past of wild animals. I got chicks that were 1 week old and raised them around Lucy. There has never been a problem. I let them hang out together in the back yard and she has never been a threat. I think they all look at each as part of a family. The chickens are about a year old. Today I left all of them in the back yard and took off to do some errands. When I got home all was fine. A neighbor came over with his dog. We went inside to discuss something and left the dogs outside. His dog is about 3/4 chocolate lab and 2-4 yrs old. She has been over here before and had little interest in the birds but is very playful and loves to chase down toys and shake them. She has only been over here a couple times though with people around. They left after about a half an hour. Ten minutes after that I went outside and found one of my chickens dead. It had been torn to shreds. feathers all over the place, no head and body parts scattered. Lucy was over there looking at it when i walked out the door. The outer flesh had gotten cold but interior warm and killed not long before. I'm sure it was killed when both dogs were in the backyard. I know both of us feel that our dog would never do something like this. I do find it interesting that there was no problem all day with Lucy and the chickens. Then when the neighbors dog was here the incident occurred. I should not have left his dog in the backyard so I am at fault. Who was the predator? Could it have been something like a hawk? This is the first time I have had one die.
  2. CooCoo4Chickens

    CooCoo4Chickens Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 13, 2010
    new jersey
    I don't think it was a hawk because it would have taken off with the chicken.
  3. thegoldengirls

    thegoldengirls Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2009
    Central NY
    I have a dog that I totally trust on his own around my smaller animals.... BUT... if another dog came around and attacked the animals, I wouldn't be surprised if my dog joined in. It's the "pack mentallity" that dogs have.
    Just like young children, it wouldn't take much for one to persuade another into getting themselves into trouble.
    Sorry about your bird.
  4. kayri

    kayri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2007
    Hawks often can't leave with a chicken because they are too heavy to carry away. In my experience if the head is missing or the skin on the head is missing, it is often a hawk, but I'd be surprised if a hawk would attack if the two dogs are around.

    I'm sorry for your loss.
  5. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Dogs generally shake their kills though, a lot of times a Lab will kill them for the chase, and then gently bring them back like they do ducks. It's the soft mouth retriever thing about them. The fact that the bird was torn to shreds kinda makes me wonder if it really was the dogs at all?? Then again, they might have played tug o war with it or something since they were both there [​IMG]

    You may never really know for sure, but it IS true that a pair of dogs will get into more trouble than just one, so it could have been the fact that both of them were there.
  6. WhiteMountainsRanch

    WhiteMountainsRanch Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 19, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    Just my opinion, but I think the friends dog did it and your dog helped, pack mentality.
  7. Hound

    Hound Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 25, 2010
    Dogs will usually rip out the tail feathers chasing before they catch the bird. Hawks don't.
  8. shellyga

    shellyga Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 23, 2010
    I agree with the posters that say both dogs did it.. while they were out playing.. a chicken can become a quick play thing.. dogs are animals after all.

    You are lucky in at least your dog will tolerate chickens -- my 8 year old Rotties would love to get at mine if given the chance.

  9. ColbyNTX

    ColbyNTX Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2009
    Woods, TX
    Dog for sure! The worst part is that if your dog watched and helped, it might think it is a fun new game and do it again.
  10. puredelite

    puredelite Chillin' With My Peeps

    You mentioned that your dog Lucy was nearby just looking at it. Did she have any evidence of blood or feathers on her muzzle? As someone previously stated, two dogs together will often get in more mischief than one alone. Now that I think about it, kinda like my kids when they were young!

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