You’ve always loved the great outdoors. You like being immersed in nature with a variety of animals roaming around your property, from dogs to chickens. But having such a diverse home can come with its own challenges. Does your dog have an appetite for your pet chickens, for example? Do you want to be able to let your chickens and dogs wander around freely, but don’t want to lose another chicken to your canine friend?
Your chickens may be part of your livestock, you may depend on them for eggs and dinners of your own. If you can train your dog not to attack the chickens, you can finally have the harmonious home you envisaged. You will be able to relax when it all goes quiet and not panic whenever you start to do a chicken headcount. Otherwise, your fear is that Chicken Run, the movie, may become chicken run, your reality, and your chickens will become determined to escape.
Training your dog not to attack the chickens will require a number of different elements. You will certainly need obedience commands to retain control over him when he is around the chickens. You will also need to take steps to familiarize him with the chickens.
As you can probably imagine, training him not to attack the feathered members of your yard will be no straightforward task. This task is made even harder if your dog has already developed a taste for chicken, or he is older and stuck in his ways. However, with persistence and patience, you should be able to train him to behave around chickens in a few weeks or months. It is important you succeed in this endeavor if you want to protect the lives of your chickens and possibly any other animals you have on your property.
Before work begins, you will need to round up several things. You may want to get a body harness for training. This will help you retain control and reduce the strain on your dog's neck. A secure leash will also be required Before starting the process, spend a few days cementing your bond with your dog so that he is keen on listening to you.
You will also need an abundance of treats or his favorite food to act as both an incentive and reward. Apart from that, you just need an optimistic attitude and a good degree of patience, then you’re ready to get to work!
Roxy has been chasing the chickens and had been learning to be calm around them fairly well, but I left her unattended in the yard for a few minutes and she caught the slow bantam rooster she liked to chase. When I caught her she was playing with the rooster who was still alive, but passed overnight.
I’m reading your great recommendations and will keep working with Roxy. She is very smart, but also very high energy.
Hello Joe, Check out James Penrith from take the lead dog training on youtube, if you have not done so already. He works with livestock chasing/killing dogs, doing off-leash training. Livestock forums where other dog owners have posted what have worked for them can be another great resource for asking questions and getting some advice. I would filter the advice by what seems like common sense. Personally, when learning more about training in an area, I find the best dog training advice makes sense when you hear it, instead of seeming overly odd or harsh. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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he has started kill the neighbor's geese how to stop him so we don't have to give him a new home
Hello, Check out James Penrith from TaketheLeadDogTraining. He has a Youtube channel. He works with dogs that chase and sometimes will kill livestock. Day 1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lgNbWCK9lFc Day 2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kpf5Bn-MNko&t=14s Day 3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xj3nMvvHhwQ Day 4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxrGQ-AZylY Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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dally is a sweet dog but kills chickens and teaches other dogs how to kill chickens too.is there something I can use or do to help her?
Hi there. I am going to send you information on how to teach your dog to be less excited by the chickens. This is something that with some time and patience, can be turned around. Your dogs need to learn that the animals are just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach her to become less excited by the animals. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking her out on leash.Any time she even looks at a animal, you give the command leave it. Once she breaks his attention away from the animal, you reward her with a treat. Ideally, you want to her to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as she isn't focused on the animal, you can reward her. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the animals until she is no longer interested in them. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dogs. The animals need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.
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Piper only bothers our yard range chickens when my wife takes out piper and continues bothering a single chicken not meaning to hurt but she has ruffed up a couple but never killed. When just me around and during the day I let her out with chickens and she pays no attention to them. I will leave alone with until she barks to come in. I don’t understand.
Hello, It sounds like pup is leaving them alone when you are there because pup respects you, and views the chickens as yours - so pup respects them as an extension of pup's respect for you. When your wife is around, if pup doesn't have that same level of respect for her, or if pup doesn't believe that she has the same rules about chickens as you, pup just does whatever they want - which is bother the chickens for fun. I recommend your wife work on commands like Leave It and Out with pup, then once pup is good at both of those when not around the chickens, have her take pup outside on a long training leash and practice those commands around the chickens to enforce pup not getting close to the birds, staring them down, or chasing/bothering in any way, with the leash on pup to keep them safe and to enforce the commands when pup doesn't obey. Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite If pup still isn't listening to her well, I would also suggest she works on the methods from the article I have linked below with pup, especially the working method and consistency method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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Our family wants to adopt a 12 month old brother and sister. They are expected to get large but probably less than 100 pounds.
We live on Five acres and have chickens. One group of chickens is in a coupe with fencing around their yard.
The other group are small chickens that occupy our back yard- where the dogs will occupying as well.
Training one dog in this scenario has difficulties. We need all the advice we can get before the dogs come to our home.
Hello April, How you train this will partially depend on the specific dogs and how strong their prey drive is. Check out the videos I have linked below. They give examples of teaching dogs self-control around prey animals. These examples are of cats, but the general training on the dog's end is similar to this for chickens too. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Severe cat issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats with the same dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 Work on impulse control in general with pups, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long Place command around lots of distractions, practicing the command until you get to the point where each pup will stay on Place while you are working with a bird in the area nearby. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps the chicken safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. A lifted cot for outdoor use and practicing this in the yard where pup and the birds will be together is what I would recommend. I would also crate train the dogs and keep them inside until fully trained around the birds, so that they are only ever in the yard while you are there with them to enforce calmness around the chickens. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control him or her self. Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ The below trainer also specializes in working with dogs who have livestock chasing behavior. Day 1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lgNbWCK9lFc Day 2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kpf5Bn-MNko&t=14s Day 3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xj3nMvvHhwQ Day 4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxrGQ-AZylY Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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