Everyone should have their own flock of chickens, if only for the eggs. If you are going to have chickens, then why not a Border Collie to herd them around the yard and back into their coop at night? Trying to do this on your own presents its own unique set of interesting problems, but when you have a well-trained pup working with you, the whole job gets just that much easier.
Border Collies are, by their very nature, great herders. But even with this natural instinct, there must be training involved. Your pup must be able to follow a series of simple commands given in complex patterns. It takes a lot of hard work and time to turn a dog into the perfect herder. But as long as you do your best to make the training sessions fun for both of you, the time will go by very quickly.
Herding involves a series of commands used to instruct your dog to move the flock of chickens around the yard and back into their coop. While there are many different and more complex commands you can teach your pup, here we will be working on the four basic commands used to move the flock around. These commands are
Once your pup has mastered these and can easily move the flock around, you can go on to teach him some of the more complex moves just for fun.
Keep in mind your pup needs to have mastered the four basic commands of 'come', 'sit', 'stay', and 'down'. He also needs to mature enough for his bones to be able to handle the rigors of herding. With this type of activity, there is always a risk of injury to your dog or the chickens he is trying to herd. You need a few supplies for this type of training.
I would like to train him to herd chickens & I don’t know where to begin
Hello Chrissi, I recommend simply socializing pup to the chickens on a long line for a while (avoid pup chasing and biting the chickens). I also recommend socializing pup and working on obedience - work pup up to obeying even around lots of distractions - like chickens. If this is your first dog training to herd, I would also either connect with a herding group, either private training or club, purchase some good DVD's showing herding basics (for visual reference), and check out some herding forums online where you can chat with other shepherds about the issues you are having and get some feedback from them along the way too. Look for events or resources near you on sites like this: http://www.ahba-herding.org/ Google your state's stockdog or herding association..."(your state) stockdog association"..."(your state) herding association (or club)". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYODEanyncY https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0oTBfqmIGLA&t=136s https://boards.bordercollie.org/forum/7-training-discussion/ https://www.homesteadingtoday.com/threads/herding-dogs.461500/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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