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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently lost my 3 little loves to a dog attack. The experience was beyond devastating. I'm wondering if anyone has experience in training dogs to respect their flock...or even ideas to reinforce their coop?? I'm desperate to be a chicken mother again, but their safety comes first!
 

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Scrambled Eggs
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I started with puppies and socialized them. I have three dogs and a couple cats. Cats are bad with chicks. I keep the chicks caged until about 3 months old. I brought the pups out with me to feed and clean the roost. My chickens are range free. As the pups got older they new the chickens we're off limits. They help with keeping the chickens safe from the neighbors wondering dogs. Once a dog starts killing though, well that is time to say bye to the dog. Rest in Peace!
 

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Cat's can be trained on chicks also. One can use the same technique they use on a dog, with supervised exposure and corrections for negative behaviors towards the chicks.

I've always had young chicks loose around the cats and never had an incident...cats are smarter than dogs even, in that regard, and are quick to respond to training.
 

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Thanks for the encouragement Bee. We have 7 cats and are getting 4 chicks in 10 or so days. We will be vigilant about keeping an eye on the cats.
 

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When they show increased interest that looks like stalking behaviors, just correct them much like you would a dog. They get the idea that this is not food to be stalked and killed, when you are all in one place, existing together and you protecting the chicks.

It's always worked for all our cats and they have shown themselves trustworthy when we are not around to monitor interactions.
 

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I agree with Bee. We have two cats, we have had about every kind of animal in the house. Baby chicks, ducklings , rabbits, our goat and turtles. We had my 2 year old rooster in the house for about 2 weeks, the cats behaved very well. If you introduce them so they can be familiar with them , then they seem less curious later on.
 

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My cats are a problem. They are never in the house. They are hunters. As they grew up eating with the big chickens they don't bother with them. I seen the hens kick they're butts. They stay faraway from the rooster. But when they see day old chicks all the goodness is gone from their eyes. I just don't take any chances with cats.
 

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I don't have house cats either and bird is always on the menu....except the chicks.

I've even had a cat that helped me round up the chickens and put them back in the perimeter fencing when needed. He knew when he was allowed to chase them and when he was not and he would do it on command.

Good ol' Spike...

 

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I started the cats off early, or they started themselves off. They loved the babies and still do.
My big dog is a herder and thinks they are his.
I don't think Ill ever be able to fully trust the shar pei mix. I'm working on him though. :)
 

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This works regardless of how many chickens the dogs may have killed.

Punish them when they kill one. Carry on about it for an hour or so.

Catch a chicken and hold it close. Cuddle it in the presence of the dogs. Let the dogs look at it up close, sniff it etc. If they lick their lips scold them. You only need to do this 2 or 3 times. The dogs will figure it out.

The concept that once a dog eats a chicken it can't be corrected is pure bs.
 

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I usually have a 3 strike policy on all my criteria...that's for disobedience of any kind. One strike for livestock kills and if they do not respond to normal training on that, they are dead. They are no use to me or anyone else in a farming community and the shelters are already overloaded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thank you all for the support and amazing photos! I'm going to get on my pup training ASAP! It's reassuring to know there is a way to fix this problem. :)
 

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My dogs were very interested in chicken dinner when I brought the Beeps home. I had to hold the chickens in my arms and let the dogs watch me pet and interact with them. They soon realized the birds were important to me, now they simply ignore them. Sometimes the Terrier still harasses them, but not aggressively.
 

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Completely agree with Bee. New pups are always socialized with the chickens.

We also practice three strike. Dogs are replaceable. There's way too many out there. No use keeping a creature alive that keeps taking innocent lives of livestock. It is after all their home too.
 
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