Friday, November 30, 2012

Chickens, Dogs and Chicken Dog Treats! - Plus a GIVEAWAY!

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by Rebecca Nickols

A few common concerns of first time chicken owners (who have a dog as a pet) are:
"How will the dog react to the chickens?"
"Should I keep the chickens and dog(s) separated?"
"What breed of dogs is best to keep around chickens?"

I had the same questions with my first flock of day old chicks. I was convinced that my border collies would never accept the chickens and would constantly torment and possible harm my defenseless birds. In the past the dogs couldn't stand it if the cats crossed an imaginary line in the yard. They would herd them to a small section in the back of the house where they thought they belonged. I assumed that if a cat couldn't defend itself against a determined border collie, then a helpless chicken didn't have a chance. Well, I was wrong... I had one mean Buff Orpington who had no fear--of dogs, cats or humans. She would literally charge the dogs and give them a fierce peck in the face. From that time on, the dogs developed a healthy fear of chickens. In fact they've even let-up on the cats too!

I think that there are some breeds that are know for a calmer disposition and,of course, there are some breeds that have a reputation for aggression. Should you allow your pit bull around your hens? Probably not...  That said, no matter what the breed, the temperament of the dog is probably more important.

Most folks know the personality of their dog and have a pretty good idea of what its first reaction to the birds will be, but always play it safe. The first introduction should be the dog viewing the chickens--while they are safe in a predator proof run. If the dog goes crazy barking and growling, then you can imagine what the outcome would be if the chickens were not safely secured. Gradually over time, the dog might accept (or even protect) the flock, but never leave them alone together until you are confident of your dog's behavior and attitude toward the chickens.

We talk a lot about treats we give our chickens, but here's a chicken treat your dog will love!
This dog treat recipe calls for a couple of eggs from your hens and some left over pumpkin from the fall harvest. And thanks to the perfect chicken shaped cookie cutter form CopperGifts.com, these treats are guaranteed to be a chicken your dog will love!

Chicken Dog Treats!

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 fresh eggs ♥
2/3 cup pureed pumpkin, either canned or fresh
3 tablespoons peanut butter

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine all ingredients in a stand mixer bowl and mix on medium speed until the dough comes together. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and roll out to 1/4" inch thick. Add a little water if the dough is very stiff, or a little flour if it is too soft and sticky. Use a cookie cutter to cut out desired shapes. Place on prepared baking sheet and bake for about 15-20 minutes until the treats are dry to the touch.

Now here's the good part! I'll send one of our readers a gift bag filled with these nutritious and delicious (according to Buddy and Sugar) chicken dog treats and a chicken shaped cookie cutter from CopperGifts.com.

*The cookie cutter line offered by CopperGifts.com is unique in that every cookie cutter is hand-made and hand-soldered. The soldered seam makes for a permanent closure that food particles cannot get into. Pastry Chefs and Bakeries love these heirloom quality cookie cutters because they are strong, safe and hold their shape even after years of repeated use. 

To enter the random drawing for the gift, leave your email address and a comment below mentioning something about your experience with dogs and chickens. Also, please include any advice, tips or suggestions! In two weeks I'll contact the winner and send the gift bag their way!

For more information about CopperGifts.com, visit these links:
CopperGifts.com (website)
CopperGifts (facebook)

The above recipe originally appeared on the site: Dessert First.

One last point to make...
An older dog is much calmer than a rambunctious puppy. My border collies are now ten years old and as the photo below suggests... Sometimes it just isn't worth the chase!



To view what else is happening at our Southwest Missouri property visit:

143 comments:

  1. sheidinewman@comcast.net - no dog yet.. but this is wonderful information for our search!

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    1. No chickens yet and i do agree, great information as we have a yellow lab who loves to chase ducks and geese.

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  2. Great recipe for dog treats! I would not trust my dogs with the chickens. Even my little Pomeranian tried to bite them!

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  3. brodyrebelsmommy@yahoo.com I dont have chockens yet, but I do have a dog, and I had the same worries as you did! Thanks for this article it reassures me that dogs and chickens can live in peace :)

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  4. dstabor@hardynet.com
    I have a 4-year old doberman, 8-year old beagle mix and 5-year old chihuahua.
    My advice: Socialization is the key when getting chickens. We got ours a couple days old and let the dogs in the garage where we kept them. Once they were old enough to go outside, we did the same with the dogs (encouraged them to come around the coop). Now that the girls are older and free-range, the dogs could care-a-less the chickens are roaming around them!
    Btw, love the chicken cookie cutter, it's adorable!

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  5. I have 3 dogs. A husky mix, an Australian Shepherd, and an Anatolian/ Great Pryrnees mix. I had 2 young roosters free ranging outside of the chicken yard, awaiting new owners & I would have sworn that my Aussie would have eaten them, given a chance, but he totally ignored them. Even when they ate his food and drank out of his water bowl!!!

    The husky acted like she wanted to eat them....but I found them inside her dog house WITB her...huddled together for warmth!

    The LGD showed no interest until they tried to eat her food...then she started to bark...but quit when I billeted.

    All in all...they've done well. I still wouldn't totally trust them in my chicken enclosure! That would be just too much temptation, so I keep them seperated!

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    1. *hollered* NOT billeted! :?
      Thank you for the treat recipe too! The dogs will love them!

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    2. Our pit mix is curious about the chickens and will chase them back into their coop. Then she ignores them.

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  6. My 5 y/o pitbull loves our flock! She could care less about the hens themselves, she just wants to find the scattered food and chicken poop. Even the younger female pit we fostered earlier this year only wanted the "leftovers". As with any dog, the way they are raised and trained plays a big part, but a couple bites on the snout from a parrot gives the dog a new respect for all feathered 'kids'. Lol!!

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    1. I'm so glad you commented! I was hoping that a pit bull owner would share that their dog and flock get along fine! You're right, "the way they are raised and trained does pay a big part." Thanks again for your comment :-)

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  7. My 5 y/o pitbull loves our flock! She could care less about the hens themselves, she just wants to find the scattered food and chicken poop. Even the younger female pit we fostered earlier this year only wanted the "leftovers". As with any dog, the way they are raised and trained plays a big part, but a couple bites on the snout from a parrot gives the dog a new respect for all feathered 'kids'. Lol!!

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    1. Hi Heather, I have an APBT also! Rusty is a doll baby and has actually changed her personality since I have had her from age 2 years. In younger years she would have eaten kittens, but now she helps clean them up after I have fed them. She is quite the little mamma. They are awesome creatures!

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  8. my dog is a little 5# Pomeranian that is only 8 months old and hasn't stopped barking at the chickens. When he gets out when the chickens are out he chases them all around. I don't know if he just wants to play or what, but the chickens don't stick around to find out!

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  9. My black lab/rottie mix used to have some interest in the chickens, rabbits and pigss. Now, they are more interested in her than she is them. Even from the beginning she watched them, sniffed them, perhaps followed them around the yard a little, but only once or twice has chased them in the six years we have had chickens.

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  10. carotopgal@gmail.com My Great Pyrenees puppy was just 4 months old when we got our first guinea hens and chickens. The guinea hens were chicks, but the chickens were grown when we got them. He was curious, but not aggressive. His great delight in life though is to randomly chase them. He doesn't always do it, but will be calmly sitting there and all of a sudden take off like a rocket when one walks by. He never tries to bite or catch them though, just loves running after them. He thinks it's all great fun...the chickens are not so pleased. :-)

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    1. My Great Pyrenees is about 10yrs old and the chickens belong to him. He sleeps in the chicken coop when the weather is nasty and they are safe unless they try to eat his food and then he just barks and them. They spend their days in the pasture with him and he is their great protector. They grew up with him close and he grew up being a guardian dog.
      Julie from Morning Glory Farm, Kansas

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  11. lwfrana@hotmail.com When my Rhodesian Ridgeback spotted my 3 new Black Australorp hens for the first time, he started to shake with fear...but he coexists beautifully now with my Aussie hens and my new Naked Neck rooster. I did lose a pullet once to the neighbor's German Shepherd, sadly.

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    1. Hilarious a rhodesian ridgeback shaking with fear at chickens! Sorry about the loss to the nieghbour though

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  12. We live in a neighbor hood that allow dogs to run around so we make sure to keep our chickens up. If we can afford to fence our yard I want to get a dog for our and the animals protection. I have heard labs tend to get along and will be motherly to other animals. I wouldn't mind a good Lab.

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  13. atjeles@hotmail.com
    Our dog is a shepherd/collie mix and she does fine with the 6 chickens who run around the property. They even sometimes take over her dog house. The only time she ever doesn't like them is when they try to eat out of her dish...then they get a little chase and a snap.

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  14. pguill@bellsouth.net
    Chesapeake Bay Retrievers and chickens do not mix. Mine decided to chomp down on a rooster one day... He was one of my mean ones so I wasn't too upset. Doggie has since passed on and now I have a Newfoundland and he could care less about chickens. He just sniffs at them and goes back to napping.

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  15. We had a calm flock of Ameracaunas with a sweet Rooster until I went out one morning to find two neighbor dogs racing among the 14 hens they had already killed...our rooster lay among his girls severely wounded. They had dug under our chain link fence. The neighbor (after my nummerous tearful telephone calls) put in electric fencing & we have had no visits from those particular animals since. With amazing strength our Rooster survived his wounds but was no longer the bird we had known but a fierce protector, attacking the humans. Our dogs (and we have had many Labs) have watched the chickens with some interest & amusement but have never attacked them. We have an Anatolean Shepherd & Great Pyranees currently & it takes steely reserve for them to leave the Geese alone especially when a goose is attached to the dogs tail and the loudest cries are coming from the furry guys.

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  16. misfit0481@yahoo.com - My 110 lb german shepherd learned that our baby chicks were part of the family and knew they were "his girls". when they got older, a neighborhood dog tried to eat our hens - my dog heard their distress and protectively chased the other dog off! we later got another dog that tried to harass the girls, but our "alpha hen" was not shy and would peck the dog's nose. that dog learned quickly not to mess with Big Momma!

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  17. We raised our hens from chicks and took the dogs daily to 'meet' them in the brooder box. I think that helped a lot because the dogs saw the chickens daily and watched them grow up. They never went after them at all, and chickens and dogs have a healthy respect for each other. My dogs (a border collie and a pomeranian) actually help me watch over the girls when we walk them between the coop and chicken tractor.
    P.S.- I can't not remark on the pitbull comment....our last two foster dogs have been pit bulls and BOTH of them have been responsible around our hens. Not a lost cause, just saying. They're great dogs when managed properly by someone who understands the breed.

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    1. So glad to hear positive comments about pit bulls! When reading the experiences of other chicken keepers, it proves that you really can't determine how a dog will interact with chickens solely by their breed. Thanks for your comment!

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  18. We had dogs before chickens. We introduced the dogs one at a time over the period of a week or see to see their reaction(s). We have not had any problems thanks goodness. The newer chihuahua puppy does try to chase them but she does not try to bite them and it gives them some exercise, lol I was more nervous about the shepherd and dobie but they are fine with them too. I have to say the Min Pin is best and I leave him with them for some protection but usually all interaction is supervised. We have only had them together for 4 months so at least for now, until they are more integrated, most of the time it is all supervised. Good luck to all!

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  19. niteflyrwoman@yahoo.com We are moving soon and I am planning on having chickens which is gonna be interesting with our dog,he's never seen one.But I hope he is pretty calm with them.I think I may get him his own chicken and see how he does with it lol.

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  20. Not so good I'm afraid....my shepherd wants to EAT THEM

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  21. My yellow lab watches my two golden buff hen sleep on his bed .... those hen attack my ruger dog.
    Kmosryd@Gmail.com

    Karen Morris

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  22. My yellow lab watches my two golden buff hen sleep on his bed .... those hen attack my ruger dog.
    Kmosryd@Gmail.com

    Karen Morris

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  23. Its all in the training of the dogs! We actually feed raw and have chickens and the dogs understand that the "girls" are our friends and don't bother them. One of our boys can help round up the chickens when asked but is very gentle and never tries to round them up on his own. Its funny how the chickens seem to have a bigger problem with my little maltese than the bigger dogs, maybe they are not sure what she is! Our cats are feed raw as well and will often wonder around in the chicken yard without bothering the chickens. Take care!

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  24. mrsjohnson0807@yahoo.com

    My grandmothers whippet would sure like to frolic with my chickens. Chasing moving objects is in her nature. She behaves very well when asked and even goes out of her way to not look at them when you are near, but I would not trust her to not fall into temptation if you turned your back.

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  25. my Chow mix and my lab mix are good with the chickens and the Turkeys. I was a little worried at first as 1 dog was 10 and the other was 6 when we got the horses chickens and turkeys but the dogs seem to know they are to watch over them. The other day 2 Toms started to fight Coco the Chow watched but when they got to ruff. She stood up stretched walked over to them and put her nose on the 1 turkeys back as if to say enough.

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  26. Lyndalu@gmail.com
    I wasn't worried about my two chihuahuas who couldn't hurt them if they tried... but my pound-rescued Aussie was an alleged chicken killer at his former home. I took him out to meet the hens on a leash and gave him a scolding if he even looked at them with that intense Border Collie/Aussie way they have of locking in on livestock. After a couple times he was afraid to even glance their way which was what I wanted. After another week or so we all setled onto a routine of mutual respect and tolerance and now Franco and the chickens happily coexist in our urban backyard.

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  27. Love your cute dogs, they have been taught well. Your chickens are in charge of the yard. Great post!

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  28. My dog Maggie absolutely loves our chickens. When I first bought day old chicks, I introduced them to her as babies, since chicken was a food word to her. She is very defensive about them. One of my cats would sleep in the hen house at night and she's the hunter too. She would never harm the chickens either. I have involved both of them from day one and they know the chickens are family.
    Unfortunately on Wednesday before Thanksgiving, the neighbors' dog came and killed 32 chickens while we were at work and the following Sunday he killed another 8. I had already called Animal Control and they were going to get the dog to put him down, but since I didn't see him do it until Sunday, their hands were tied. The neighbors have since apologized profusely, have removed the dog to other family 20 miles away and I have in writing that he will never be back and they are paying for 50 new chickens for me.
    Of course we were devastated and the 7 chickens I have left are severely traumatized, they didn't even want to leave their house for a week.

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  29. we dont have a dog just kidding she thinks shes a person she sniffs the chickens and chases them hasnt killed any but we dont take chances either lbruesch1950@msn.com

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  30. I have a dog that never bothers the free range chickens. Might have something to do with the fact that he's been shocked on an electric chicken fence while watching the chickens...

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  31. I just got chickens this year and when our neighbors' dog found them she had to come and investigate. She thought my chickens were for her entertainment and chewing pleasure. We found her bothering the chickens twice after that. Lucky for her, my neighbors and my chickens, the coop and run is very well secured and she couldn't get to my babies. ~Katlyn ktbug22288@yahoo.com

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  32. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  33. I have Jack Russells and they are born hunters. They bark endlessly at the chickens in the coop / run. I wouldnt trust them with a ten foot pole but I wish I could because its a huge hassle having to shut the dogs inside so that the chickens can run around for a couple hours a day. But i love them all so we handle it! paula.turk@gmail.com

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  34. My chickens get along with most of the dogs, as a matter of fact, they mostly ignore them,lol.

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  35. We got our first chickens (adult hand-me-downs) not very long after we rescued two racing greyhounds. That was a recipe for disaster. While Jack was afraid of the chickens, Samantha wanted to chase and kill. And kill she did, a couple of times. We did our best to keep them separated, dogs in the back yard and chickens in the pasture. But we just couldn't keep the chickens out of the back yard. So every time we let the dogs out, we had to chase the chickens back to the pasture, and then we had to supervise to make sure they didn't come back. That got really old, so we started taking Samantha out on leash to "help" us chase the chickens out. After a few days, we realized she enjoyed herding the chickens, so we concentrated on training her to herd rather than chase. After only a few weeks of training, we got to the point we could voice control her, and eventually we even trusted her alone with the chickens. It's been a few years now, and Samantha is wonderful with the chickens.
    Kari (karicarlisle@yahoo.com)
    P.S. Jack got over his fear of the chickens and now loves to play with them!

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  36. My chickens are fearless of my two German Shepherds. I have a picture of my chickens and dogs sharing a watermelon together..it's super cute!
    wbmom09@gmail.com

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  37. nan.mclellan@gmail.com
    I have a Rat Terrier. Yoshi was about 4 when we got our day old chicks. I kept them the first few days in a bigger box in the house and made sure to show them to him and let him give them a good sniff. This let him realize they were ours and let them get used to a big hairy something giving them the once over. Also the first few times I let them outside to roam I had my daughter keep a light hold on Yoshi to keep him from chasing them. The only time they have ever squabbled was once when I put out bread and Yoshi wanted some, but the girls were old enough them that they just gave him a sharp peck or two then ate their bread in peace. Mostly they just sniff or cackle hello to each other when they meet up and have no problems sharing our small yard together.

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  38. We adopted a dog this summer who was very well trained (retired seeing eye dog) and at first she tried to play with the chickens and that wasn't happening, they ran from her. Eventually she learned to ignore them, they just didn't want to play. She was never aggressive with them.
    We have to make treats for her at home because she is allergic to both poultry and corn. We had a lot of liver because we buy whole pig and half cow for meat. Blend that u with peanut butter, oatmeal,brown rice flour, and dried parsley. She thinks they are the best thing ever.

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  39. I never have seen a good interation between dog and chickens and after loosing several to maurading dogs that inconsiderate neighbors let roam free; I have fenced my yard to keep the dogs out. I don't have any issue with my chicken going off my property so the fence is purely to keep dogs out. Cats on the otherhand are not so problematic but I don't trust them around chicks.

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  40. Betty Hopkins rogerhop@hotmail.com
    I had a major problem with my syberian husky getting along with the chickens. Unfortunately, he got ahold of a few before I could stop him. My husband is a longtime farmer and had an idea. I didn't agree at first but if you are having a serious problem, this worked. If you dog kills a chicken, just tie the dead chicken around the dogs neck securely. It sounds cruel but after about a week, my dog didn't want anything to do with chickens. This especially works when it is hot outside. I don't need to go into more detail be it actually caused my dog to shy away from the chickens permanently!
    Hope I didn't gross anyone out! :)
    I love the recipe for dog treats! I had a chance to make them and they are wonderful! HOpe I can win the goodie bag!!!

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  41. I have two Australian Sheppards I got from a lady two years ago. They were house dogs. At the time a had just a few chickens and let the dogs to adjust to them for a while. Now my dogs are very friendly with chickens (I have 20 of them) and always checking on them when they are more noisy then usual or in the bad weather. My doggies sometimes try to herd the cats, but very gentle with chicks.

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  42. When are Golden Retriever was about 8 we got a couple baby chicks for our banty hen who was broody. The dog was fascinated with the chicks when they peeped. Shouldn't like her chew toy! After a couple weeks one of the chicks ventured out of the pen and was peeping loudly while the dog layed there and suddenly without getting up or moving, the dog grabbed her into her mouth. I yelled and ran to save the chick but she gentlty let her go and never bothered any of them again! Go figure! Guess she didn't taste good enough!

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  43. This information helps in that I have a puppy and want to get chickens. My pup is very mellow. It is good to know that they can learn to accept each other. tacder1 at gmail.com

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  44. I don't have chickens yet, but reading your blogs, filled with so much information has sure gotten me interested. Do have a dog though, an almost 6 yr. old Great Dane. He's never hurt a thing, not even the abandoned kitten that I had to hand feed for a bit, the mother cat wouldn't nurse it and had already lost 2 of the 3 kittens. She was only interested in still nursing the kitten from her last litter, weird. Thanks for the recipe, I'm sure Lance is going to love these treats, along with the other treats we make for him. Yup, he's spoiled.

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  45. I have an 11 year old Shih Tzu and when my chicks were small they would hop onto his back when he would lay down and it didn't even phase him. Now they are almost as big as he is and a few of the girls follow him everywhere. t.bradburn@verizon.net

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  46. paulaj@frontier.com

    My Border Collie acts predatory toward the tiny chicks, but once they are out of the brooder, he is very protective of them(killed a raccoon this summer) or ignores them. My old Lab loved the chickens from Day One. Socializing helps, too.

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  47. Elizabeth (emorgan55@yahoo.com)December 4, 2012 at 5:40 PM

    I'm so glad to read this article! We have 2 dogs, an 11 year old and a 2 year old mix, and are planning to start a small coop with 2 chickens. The advice on socialization is very helpful!

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  48. fugori@juno.com

    As someone else posted, I think it's how you've raised and trained your dogs. We have five dogs; a Black Lab, a Chocolate Lab, a King Charles Spaniel, Yorkshire Terrier/Bishon mix, and a small terrier of unknown mix. None of our dogs have attacked our flock of 12 pet hens and a rooster. The dogs seem to know that the flock is part of the family. I do have to watch the CL though, he really loves chicken poop! :P

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  49. Our 8-yr-old yellow lab and 1-yr-old black lab tried to chase the chickens at first, but were told NO, so they leave them alone. They're a smart breed--they've seen us taking care of the chickens like we take care of them, so they realize now that they're part of the family. However, I caught the older lab getting his kicks one day by walking up to the chicken wire and yelling "WOOF!" to watch them scatter. Then he calmly walked away...

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  50. bessgoose@yahoo.com
    I do think choosing the appropriate breed is important. When I lived in Alaska, the ubiquitous husky up there was notorious for being a hazard to chickens. I never knew a husky who would leave a chicken alone given the opportunity. And I intentionally moved toward herding breeds so I could have safe chickens! Now I live in NC with chickens, goats, dogs, and cats, and all of us get along really well.

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  51. Fran
    Bluefiglady@yahoo.com

    My 2 dogs, 8 yr old pit bull and a doberman cross,became so use to all the chickens and guinea hens that when we would go for walks the guineas & chickens came along walking inbetween the 2 dogs at times or following. It took about a year for the dogs to adjust to country living; but I think they are doing well.

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  52. I had two wonderful pet chickens, then got a German Shepard puppy. Not a good combination. However, the dog is 5 now, I miss my chickens. This is an inspiration- I'm ready to try again.

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  53. When I first got my chickens, the prior owner assured me they couldn't fly over the fence into the dog pen. Whoops. My sharpei was so proud of herself when she carried one of the chickens into the house through her doggie door! I've learned a lot since then!

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  54. dianerun@gmail.com

    We do many canine rescues, and also raise our own chicks. Of all the many breeds of dogs that have come into our lives, its our Great Danes that have wanted to go after the chickens. Socialization is our best answer to them getting along and lots of good luck. Currently our border collie is more fascinated herding the chickens than the goats. So far, everyone is safe.

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  55. When the chickens and dogs first met the dogs ignored the chickens but the Bantam roosers started chasing the dogs (Cairn Terriers) and atacking the dogs woth the claws foward attack. Finally the male dog had enough of that and now we can't have the both free in the yard because the chicken will go after the dog and the dog will grab the chicken and hold it down. I suspect if I didn't go seperate them the dog would tire of holding it down and just eat it. Doug Wyman wymandj@gmail.com

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  56. Eunice bobrat@yourstarnet.net
    I have 3 dogs (All older dogs) but they have been with my chickens since the day they were hatched. Never bothering them, now each morning when i open the shed door to let them out to free range, the dogs stand in the middle of the door like they are counting them, and the chickens don't even look at them, just go around them and take off for the day. I must say that my husband hated the chicks when i brought them home, but now is with them every day, helping to pick eggs and cleans the shed when needed, as well as looking to see what else they might like to have for fun in the yard. Thanks love your articles.

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  57. My little red heeler mix "Wednesday" loves her chickens. She waits at the coop door each morning, when I open the coop, until all 7 are out. Had worries about her and the chickies in the beginning but we just took it slow and I never left her alone with them the first year. This year she thinks they are hers to watch! Jweb380@aol.com

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  58. My dog is a Pom/Shepard mix and she is always watching and waiting for one of chickens to fly out of their pens. So far, in 3 years, she has killed 2 of my chickens. She thinks she is a hunting dog and has also killed 3 groundhogs. She is 7 years old and I don't think she is going to change her mind about the chase and kill instinct. Loved the recipe; thanks for sharing. I will definitely need one of the chicken cookie cutters!

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  59. sendingflyingmonkeys@yahoo.com

    We are only in the beginning stages of planning for chickens. We do have dogs, though, and it is my greatest wish that our dogs will get along with our future chickens. Perhaps it is more realistic to think that we may be able to raise a dog with chickens. I enjoy this blog!

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  60. ksmall@dishmail.net

    I have one little lady that rents the dog house each day to lay. She pays the rent with an egg that the lucky pooch gets to enjoy before I can get to it

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  61. We have a three-legged robin-killing Greyhound and an 11-pound dove-hunting terrier cross. I was worried at first because all of my girls are bantams, but after about three seconds loose in the yard, my lead hen walked up to the terrier, puffed up, and pecked her right on the end of the nose. Both dogs beat it for the house screaming and have forever after given the chickens a wide berth. The only time it's a problem having everybody in the yard together is when my greyhound gets excited and does laps in the yard. Sometimes the hens get upset by that and they run across his path. He's bowled a couple of them over, but never touched a single one on purpose.

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  62. We had the dogs before chickens also. One of our Australian cattle dogs went to live with our daughter, but we have one left and a shih tzu...they all wander around the yard together. We introduced them to the chickens while they were still in the house and they all get along. Sometimes we think that we see the Silkies but nope, it's the shih tzu. I've had to fuss at him about barking at one of the bantams in the nesting box, but he's learning....apparently they are his chickens as he has marked their pen and tried to mark a chicken or two...and he has managed to do that too ;D

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  63. Ginger - kookia2@yahoo.comDecember 4, 2012 at 7:45 PM

    We had an Rottweiler and currently have a Golden Lab and a Bassett Hound. None of them bother the chickens, however, 7+ yrs ago when we started with chickens, we weren't sure how it would go. Our first 2 dogs, Rott and Lab, were introduced to them while our chickens were in a Coop. When we did start to let them free in the yard out here in the Country, we literally just sat with the dogs and told them NOt to bother them. Our dogs (and I never was much of a dog person until Sasha my Rott was given to my boys and I) were pretty good leaving the chickens alone. However, like that imaginary line in the yard for the cats, especially for Sasha, the dogs knew that the chickens were not suppose to be in the yard at night and I believe there were a couple times we did find feather piles in the yard the next day, if not that night. If there is a farm prowler that get to the chickens, they are fought/scared off by our wonderful dogs, but any harmed chickens are now a tasty treat to these two protectorsofnours. Sasha is no longer with us, and our Basset Hound, Daisy, doesn't seem too interested in the chickies. One other funny bit would be about our Golden Lab, Roscoe. When I bring home new chicks (and ducklings and turkey-lings), Roscoe is introduced to the babies and repeatedly told, "These are mommas babies, you leave the babies alone!". He LOVES to join us when we feed the chicks, but we do have to watch over the very excited and happy tail-wagging Lab as he will grab for a chick the more they jump around, and again, if they get in an area where they are not suppose to be (the wrong side of the fence) , they become fair game.
    We have been very impressed with our dogs and how they don't seem bothered by the chickens.....I even have pics of the chickens pecking around right close to Sasha as she laid in the yard!!!

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  64. leave your email address

    dropastitch@yahoo.com

    and a comment below mentioning something about your experience with dogs and chickens.

    I have a dog and I have chickens. But their paths never meet, as I am "co-parenting" my chickens with a friend, and the coop is at his house! So no experiences to report.

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  65. rebecca.maule@yahoo.com

    I have a toy poodle that just love's the chicken's. and she help's me round them up at night and put them in the coop. she's my little herding dog.

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  66. I have two Cairn terriers who are very good with my motley crew of eight hens and two roosters. My youngest dog thinks he is a chicken since he grew up with them my Barnvelders. I also run a boarding kennel and the various breeds that come to stay are able to get along with the chicks since they are free range and the dogs range free for long periods during the day. All it takes is a command from me and they decide that pleasing me is more important than a mouthful of feathers. It is hard to turn instinct around if a dog is determined enough. It sounds like German Shepherds are the hardest on chickens so I will be very careful with them. Bonstu2000@yahoo.com

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  67. Thanks for the dog treat recipe. I have lost five chickens over the years to my dogs. I do not trust them if I am not there. I would never trust them with chicks!

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  68. cacjsc@yahoo.com I have 3 Golden Retrievers, and 3 Rhode Island Red chickens which I raised from chicks. The dogs are 12, 10 and 2 1/2 The chickens are almost 2 years old now. My 2 older dogs don't even bother with the chickens anymore. They all just look at eachother, could care less. But my youngest Golden, Homey, chases those poor birds every opportunity she can! They end up hiding under one of the rhododendron bushes that she can't get under! They will stay in there for about an hour, then slowly sneak back out and run to the coop! I can't wait to try this biscuit recipe!!!!!!!!! Thanks! Janet

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  69. I have put together a shed shelter [fox, snake and mouse proof - I hope] and have to build a coop as I plan to be a new "mom" come spring and I have had some wonders how my cats and dog will react to the new additions. Livi, my dog, will do wonders for a treat and the recipe sounds good enough for humans also and the chicken shaped cutter would be soooooo special.

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  70. DaneDreamer@hotmail.com
    My Danes don't have much interest in the girls, unless they get underfoot while my dogs are eating. They're really bold and will sometimes steal food that dogs are eating.

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  71. okayfine@wi.rr.com, Love your articles, always so useful. I have found that dogs can be trained to understand what animals are okay to chase and which ones are not. Our dog knows it is okay to chase the feral cats that come after our birds but not the "pet" cats. She's been trained to leave all birds alone, wild ones or parts of the family.

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  72. We brought home our 7 week old German Shepherd pup and let him in with our chickens. He immediately herded them into a corner of the pen and laid down on all 4 paws and watched them. When 1 tried to get away, he chased her back and again laid down. His grandmother was a champion herder so I thought it was instinctual. He never did this again much to my surprise.

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  73. Your picture is too too funny!! My dogs look at a mouse that way! Hi, I'm Cheryl. I don't have any chickens but I desperately want them. I am working on my hubby to let me get some. I have two dogs. Rusty is 13 1/2 years old and Moose is 8 years old. When Rusty was 3 years old, we had just moved to Eastern Missouri. I was at an Orschelen's and found some baby turkeys. They let me carry one out to show Rusty. She licked it on its head and smelled it! I am fully confident Rusty would be great with chickens. Moose on the other hand detests birds. That might get a little sticky! However, I feel she will love them eventually!!

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  74. We have hens and 3 dogs. Our 9 yo pitbull pays no attention to them. She is more interested in "mothering" or pot-bellied piglets.
    Our terrier cross pup (almost6 mo) gets a little excited with them and will chase and we think she's responsible for at least one death. We think her play became too rough. She now wears a training collar when she's outside and receives a "reminder" if she starts chasing them. She also want to mother our piglets. I have an 8 yo pomeranian that I trust the least around the chickens. He will definately chase and bark at them. Fortunately, he'd rather be in the house with me than out in the barnyard without me. I agree it's more about the temperament than the breed of dog; however, I think trying to mix chickens with a hunting breed like a pointer might be going against nature a little too much. We had a german shorthaired pointer and she killed barn cats, pet rabbits, barn vermin, etc. I doubt chickens would have lasted very long around her either. I think the mentioned dog treat recipe is a great idea. I've never thought of making our own treats like that. I can see my daughter wanting to try out that recipe. She's got lots of pumpkin harvest stored in our garage and this would be a good way to put some of it to you. We're also planning to feed some to our chickens, they go crazy over mashed pumpkin, and we think our piglets will like it too.

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  75. I have an older golden retriever who protects our hens...although she will not allow them to eat her food. She's at the top of the pecking order! I have one older hen who was the lone hen for a year and she would sleep in the crate with my dog. I've also seen her grooming my dog.
    gingeroo616 at AOL dotcom

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  76. Did break a dog from killing chickens. I was surprised myself, but she hasn't touched a chicken in 6 months. We have 19 hens, 2 roosters, 2 turkeys and 17 Jersey Giant poults. They free range and the dog doesn't bother them except she thinks she needs to eat their feed. She just had puppies and we plan on raising one with the chickens. I would love to have a chicken cutter and I'm trying that dog treat recipe. I just canned 18 quarts of pumpkin!
    cyndikm@windstream.net

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  77. When I was a child, my family lost several birds and a rabbit to dogs. Only one of those casualties was due to a strange dog. Some dogs are naturally mellow enough to ignore exciting prey animals. Some dogs will ignore them with some half-hearted guidance training. This DEFINITELY does not apply to some dogs though. I have an excitable blue heeler (that I love to death) who thinks any reaction from anything at all is an exciting challenge. If a chicken or a goose were to attack him, I have no doubt he would think it made the "game" more fun, even if he was getting the snot beaten out of him. The best way to keep him from thinking chickens, rabbits, and such are fun is to NEVER let him have the chance to pester them, EVEN from the safety of the opposite side of a fence. I don't currently have any poultry, but my rabbit area is fenced, even though the rabbits are in sturdy cages. He knows he is not allowed inside the fence and has learned to wait for me at the gate. He doesn't get excited because he has never been allowed to and thus fortunately has never learned that spooking the rabbits is fun.

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  78. I have a lab/pit mix and as long as I am out with her, she leaves the chickens alone. I don't know that I would trust her if I wasn't out with her though.

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  79. Usually allowing your dog around baby chicks as they are growing with supervision will cause most dogs to be protective and not agressive. But that doesn't mean all dogs.

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  80. Donnarus212@optonline.net we have both chickens and a dog. We had to train the dog not to touch the chicks when they are little. My dog is small so when the hens grow up they are larger than the dog.

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  81. Thanks for the recipe! We don't have a dog, but neighborhood dogs like to come and run laps around my coop and girls. I usually chase them off, but I hope they don't ever get too frisky and nip one of my ladies....

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  82. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  83. OK, I am still laughing over some of these responses, but here's my story.

    The first two day old chicks we brought home were named by us at the feed store, "Delicious" and "Delectable." I had them in a large cardboard box in my computer room when I realized that the dog was nowhere to be seen and I ran into the room, the box was empty. The dog discovered that they were, indeed, delicious and delectable. I went back to the feed store the next day and bought two more chicks, but this time I put them into a wire cage until I build a large brooder box for them. A week later I went back and bought seven more chicks.

    The dog loved to get on top of the brooder cage as I was feeding or watering or changing the shavings for the chicks. I had a very stout wire top that she could stand on without bending, and as a result she watched the babies become larger every day, then we put them outside when they were feathered out.

    At two months old, when the brooder box was finally empty, we went back to the feed store and did the same thing all over again with ten more day old chicks, and again the dog would get up on "her" perch to watch everything going on.

    When this second group was all feathered out, they too went outside.

    Now, eight months later, she figures that these are HER chicks, now chickens, and they all get along just fine. She has a dog door that she can use 24/7 and will tear out of the house in the middle of the night to 'go see that everything is OK.'

    Phottoman@gmail.com

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  84. sparklemommy@yahoo.com. I used the friendship method- brought each chicken out to meet our dog one at a time. Our one dog is a golden he is the only one allowed around the flock. He watches the coop most of the day and keeps everything else away. We have 5 adopted shelter dogs. They are wonderful, but not raised with chickens. Two are Great Danes, One Boxer, one Beagle. Thanks for the information and recipe. Every bit of information helps.

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    1. Congratulations Sparkle! ~ You're the winner!

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  85. misty galyon (mdgalyon@bellsouth.net)- we have 16 chickens and one mixed breed dog that thinks he is a chicken. Mac (dog) knows when you have food in your hand and that you are taking it to the chickens to feed. when all the chickens gather around you he slips into the middle of the circle of chickens and sits down and looks at you like dont forget me mom im a chicken too!

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  86. Our almost 4 yro Great Dane can't resist once in awhile romping into the middle of our flock of 7 silver laced wyandotte hens just for the scatter affect but mostly the 'watch' command works to keep him responsible for their wellbeing. That said one Easter morning i saw the neighbors dog carry our rooster off through the woods . . . you never know

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  87. I have a black lab who protects and plays with all of my ducks, chickens and geese :) He loves them like his own. I can't wait to get home and make him some of these treats!

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  88. I had a collie mix who used to guard the chickens for me, but I have a terrier mix now who just wants to kill them. I let the chickens free range, so I can't let the dog out without constant supervision.

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  89. Our chickens had quite a scare and one lost a few feathers when our neighbor's hunting dog got out. Our neighbor felt VERY bad, so I would love these dog treats as a good will gesture, to say "hey, it's OK, accidents happen".

    ultradc@q.com

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  90. My lab/terrier mix was not quite two years old when I got my first chicks. I let her sniff them and watch them grow up. While she is an absolute sweetie most of the time, I had seen her capture and kill moles, squirrels and mice faster than I could react. So, using a technique from a TV show, I made it a point to show her that the chicks belonged to me - not her. Several times, I positioned myself between Luna Girl and the chicks and walked toward her, causing her to back away. She got the message. Now, she will approach the chickens in the fenced backyard, but just to sniff their aromatic rear ends. The Brahma will charge her and peck, causing her to run away - all in good fun. The Domminickers just stare at the crazy dog. All live in peace together with my two cats. Keeping Luna Girl away from the decidedly tasty chicken poop - ah, that's another story.

    I will definitely try that dog biscuit recipe. Since there have been so many problems with treats from China, it will be nice to give Luna Girl something I know is wholesome and safe!

    Di

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  91. saswright@hotmail.com - After the puppy got one of my ladies, we had a short discussion about them being my babies . . . Both my heeler and my australian shepard know not to touch my babies but they have to protect them.

    My only problem is they (the dogs) figured they can fit in the chicken door and steal my eggs.

    Love the recipe. Thanks.

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  92. Teaching my Jack Russell Terrier, Cleo, who even chases sparrows, to leave the chickens alone was a task. I started when my 4 hens were just chicks to convince my 8-year old dog to be protective with them. Not successful. When the hens became old enough to free-range, I kept barriers of chain-link gates between the dog and hens, letting the dog know that barking and aggressive behavior was not acceptable. I eased her into being with the hens by keeping her on a leash around the chickens. She adapted. However, the hens were the problem, especially my dominant, mean, Barred Plymouth Rock, who would ambush the dog and peck her. Then Cleo would trap the hen under her front leg acting like she was going to kill her. It was more noise than action. Yelling sternly at both has worked well. The hens are bonded to me as well as Cleo. Cleo took pains to avoid the chickens when being charged. She does not like me yelling at her. The chickens got yelled at more, and after a year and a half, it is calm. I figured if the Dog Whisperer could change a dog's attitude, so could I. People are surprised that my aggressive little dog is so good around the chickens. I am always watching.

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  93. My dog, Brody, is a papillon.When I first got 4 buff orpington chicks, Brody was 2 yrs old and wanted to lick the chicks and be with them all the time. He would lay down and let the chicks climb all over him. He would follow them all over the yard. I now have 27 chickens, different varieties and he still loves to be around them. They are all used to him walking amongst them. He is very attentive to any chicks and the hen let him follow her and the chicks all around the yard without getting upset. He loves all baby creatures. I rescued 4 kittens from behind the restaurant where I work and brought them home until I found homes for them. Brody likes to chase cats out of the yard, but these were babies and he wanted to lick them and watch over them not knowing they will be cats someday. When I found new homes for them, he kept looking around trying to find the babies. He is a sweet, gentle boy who is now 5 yrs. old.

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    1. I could not get my email address to appear in the above comment I made about my dog Brody, it would not publish until I pressed the anonymous button. So anyway, my email address is equus813@hotmail.com.Thanks.

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  94. Mary Ann
    nickers@frontiernet.net

    I can't wait for the week end to try making these for my dog. Thank you for sharing such great tips.

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  95. James, oldman_bc@yahoo.com. enjoy reading the post. here is a tip on helping to keep your dogs from messing with your chickens.for those that hatch out your own baby chicks with mother hen when her babies are small let your ol mean setting hen flog the pup while it is young & as it matures it will be afraid of most all chickens may not work on older dogs,but the pup sure learns chickens is a no no .

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  96. becharmed@live.com
    We have an electric feather net around our girls. It only took one zap on the nose for Kate, our black lab mix, to decide she would find some other playmates!

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  97. Hi, I thought my e-address would show up with the comment - but it didn't ------

    eileen123@hotmail.com ---- sorry
    I do have plans to buy some chicks come spring and I r-e-a-l-l-y do hope My mix Livi and the cats accept the little critters as part of this family. Baking chicken shaped cookies would be a blast as an announcement for the new arrivals.

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  98. Interesting blog. I have had chickens for many years. Long before raccoons & coyotes started living in this area, ah the good old days when I didn't have to worry about keeping the chicken barn door closed. LOL
    My friend had a dog that her father didn't like. He had been raised with chickens. So I took him home to save his life.
    As an outside dog he started sleeping in with my chickens. This worked out great for several years. But all too soon he got old and passed away.
    In less than a week I walked into my chicken barn and found one of my hens that had been sitting on eggs, dead and the eggs destroyed. A raccoon had struck.
    Since then I have had dogs sleeping in my barn.
    I have been very lucky finding ones that do not bother the chickens.
    At this time I have a beagle. I found her in a cage that was about 4 X 4 made of plywood, in with another dog. She could not even see out of the cage. Was so traumatized she didn't even notice the chickens. I tied her in their yard after they went to bed and I watched her during the day to make sure they was safe with her. As she got better she got her inner beagle back but still sleeps with the chickens in her own dog box.
    She gets her treats from their food and also their deposits. Both kinds including eggs when she can beat me to them.
    mjponylady@yahoo.com
    I am sure she would love the treats as she loves to eat. Thanks for the good articles.

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  99. buckyandtux at gmail dot com My one dog is a Husky, he is good in the house but when it comes to outdoors he is a hunter and definitely not chicken safe! Once a chicken got in the part of the yard he plays in. I think we both saw it at the same time but he made it there first. I was able to get the chicken away from him somehow and she did live although was a little worse for the wear for a few days.

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  100. We have Miniature Aussies and they love the little chicken nuggets in the coop (poop)..acck.. They show no interest in the chickens really. The younger pups we've scolded if they get try to get too playful with them. But for the most part they are only interested in the poo.. :/ We keep our chickens winter water ice free by placing one of the heat lamps above the waterer. Viola! No ice. We also put one above the perch for the chickens.
    I can't wait to try the cookie recipe for the dogs! I am sure the grand kids will have to taste them too at least once..lol Thank you for the recipe!

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  101. BlueEyedBayFilly@yahoo.com -- I forgot to add my email. :) My suggestion is above. :)

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  102. Another suggestion I just thought of... Some of my dogs have **allergies to wheat and corn.. You can replace the wheat flour with **Brown Rice Flour. It will also give the treats a little crunch!
    BlueEyedBayFilly@yahoo.com

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  103. We have 2 Shi tzu's and a full grown boxer and they dont seem to mind the chickens at all! :) Melody Mays

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  104. The only dog I have ever owned was a Australian Shepherd which I actually bought at a "Poultry Auction". She was a very sweet dog, but such an escape-artist! Haha
    Grace M
    graceinapril@gmail.com

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  105. Knowing your dog helps. When the day old chicks arrive at their new home I include all the dogs in their care and let any interested dog go with me multiple times a day to care for them and check on them. I have a very aggressive cattledog and I cup the baby chicks in my hands forming a safe cage and let her smell them and get to know them. I do this as long as she shows any interest in them. After a while she gets bored or has finally smells all them and shows no interest in them. I have another mixed breed who doesn't miss an opprotunity to go see the babys but has not interest once they move into the hen house. We rescued a pitbull mix and had a horrible time with her need to chase the chickens (in her defense I think she is part bird dog) breaking her of this proved too difficult. After trying everything we knew for two weeks I broke down and borrowed a shock collar from someone and with a very heavy heart adjusted the setting on myself and then put it on her. It worked great, it took only two jolts and the problem was over. That was four years ago and she has only chased the guineas once in all that time. For all of you sending me hateful thoughts, save them for someone else. I love dogs more than anything in this world and it was either this or a trip to the pound, which would have been a certain death.

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    1. Thanks for sharing... It sounds like you did what worked for you and your flock. Maybe it will help someone else who is dealing with the same situation.

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  106. stacyhager8@yahoo.com
    Thanks for the recipe, sounds like a good one!

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  107. I have a four year old Collie. We let him see and be in the same room with the chickens when we first put them in the brooder as day-old chicks. He was very curious, and used to sit by the brooder with his ears perked up and twisting his head to listen.

    Then after a week or so, he totally ignored them. When we moved them outside into the new coop, he barked and barked, and ran around and around the coop. So I decided that it would be safer if I kept him in the house when the chickens were outside.

    One day, he managed to slip out of the house when no one was paying attention. He ran over to where the chickens were and started barking and running around and around them. I was freaked out because I thought he was going to hurt the chickens!

    The coop door was open, and the Collie started herding them back in the coop! It only took a few minutes, and all the hens were back safe in the coop. My Collie sat down at the gate with a grin on his face that looked like "See what I did!"

    After that, anytime I need to put the chickens back in the coop before dark, I let him round them up for me!

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  108. ford50000@gmail.com

    I have been contemplating getting chickens but I was worried about my dogs' interaction with them. I have a blue heeler mix and a german shorthaired pointer. We also have a dove, but she stays in her cage high above the dogs and coos at them all day. Thank you for your article and to all the posted comments from you readers. I feel much better about introducing chickens to my dogs this spring! We are just about to try out the biscuit recipe as well:)

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  109. Hello..My husband and I live Germany, Munich and I have a 3 Bedroom apartment with 2 of those bedrooms being vacant..We are a occasion/white couple in our late 30s and all of our family and friends are back home to Alabama and Florida theirs children were supposed to come to Las Vegas but at the last minute, decided to stay home in Germany, Munich so we have a Pink nursery completely filled with baby girl items, We are a NO DRAMA family and we are A NO SMOKING OR DRINKING OR DRUGS FAMILY and PLAN to keep it that way..We are also very private people and keep to ourselves but we would love to have a little one around and become a parents to someone but every thing seen not to work out until we found this great spell caster GBENGA OKOKODU.. He really bring joy to us and we are very happy today with two bouncing baby boys. IF you are someone who has no family around and in need of help Please email visit him priest_gbenga.magic_temple@priest.com and he will get your problem solved...You don't have to live in the pains all day, anywhere you are located, you can get help from this man then please contact us and tell him about your problem...Thank you for taking the time to read my testimonies and I hope to hear yours soon...good luck Care...Tina from Germany, Munich

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    1. hmmm... Do you like dogs and chickens??

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  110. Can someone tell me about how their dogs react to chicken poop left in the yard where the chickens free range.

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  111. My dogs eat the chicken poop so I have to keep them out of the chicken areas.

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  112. gproberts1525@hotmail.com

    We are getting an Australian Shephard puppy in a couple of months (its due any time) and we will see then how it goes with the chickens. But from all the research that we've done, they are a good choice to have with chickens. I found the article helpful and the treats sound like a winner!I am curious if any of your readers that have aussies keep their dogs in house at night or outside only? Thanks, Peg

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  113. Great article. I've lost almost half of my flock to a hawk. I would love to have a dog to help protect them. Thanks for the info. I have had Australian Shephards before to help herd cattle. They are wonderful workers and great pets!

    shwsunshine@yahoo.com

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  114. As a person who loves your blog, I am disappointed in one line of this post - "Should you allow your pit bull around your hens? Probably not... "

    I have a 2 year old pit bull and a 10 month old boxer/lab that are both rescue dogs. Ziggy, the Pit bull was pulled from a kill shelter 2 hours before he was to be put down ONLY because of his breed. They both love and respect our flock and stand guard ofver their feathery sisters. (ziggy sleeps by their run and gets upset if they cackel too much and checks on them. Both dogs may try to herd them when they think they are too scattered, but would not hurt them in any way. Please don't make generalizations about any breed this way. Things like this are why these amazing dogs can be placed on kill lists for no reason other than what breed they are thought to be.

    Thanks for understanding. :-)

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    1. Thanks so much for your info! I appreciate that you shared your story and I didn't mean to make generalizations (but I did). I am so glad that so many pit bull owners have set me straight! How the dog is raised and treated plays so much into the temperament and attitude toward other animals, people (chickens). Thanks for your comment!

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  115. While I have lost hens to a neighbor's lab mix, our own rescued greyhound, Missy, has little interest in our birds. We have one guinea fowl, who occasionally perches on the back deck railing, which Missy finds intimidating, but otherwise, she would much rather watch the deer in our woods. Now, *those* critters she'd like to inspect much more closely, if she ever got the chance...

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  116. The winner of the giveaway was randomly chosen and the "Chicken Dog Treats" and cookie cutter are on their way to a lucky dog and happy chicken keeper! Thanks for your great tips, suggestions and advice on how chickens and dogs can live together peacefully. I loved reading all your comments and even though the giveaway is over--keep sharing your stories, knowledge and experience with other members of our community!

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  117. Linda Misak garynlindami@yahoo.com I let my dog a toy poodle go into the outdoor chicken run with me and he does not even pay much attention to the chickens. He is looking to see what goodies I have given the chickens to eat and maybe he can get a little treat. Now my miniature schnauzer is a nother story. I would probably not let her into the run. She loves to chase,catch and EAT any bird she can get her chops into. SO my Archie toy poodle could be a great friend to my girls!!1

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  118. After my rotti got ahold of one of my roosters and killed him I tried an old trick my mother told me about tying the dead chicken around his neck. I'll admit it was pretty disgusting but he must of thought so too because he hasn't bothered another chicken since

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  119. Our elderly (and usually very sweet tempered) cocker spaniel, Milly, stalks them and shows intense interest which seems predatory. Fortunately she is slow. Charlie, our miniature poodle, is the same general coloration as the chickens (Barred Rocks) and is so "green" he probably thinks they are poodles too. He gets into their pen, checks out their coop, and their poop and just hangs out with them. The chickens don't seem to mind him being there but the adventurous hen has flapped at him and chased him to the pen gate for getting too familiar with her. She scares him.

    Milly...I just don't know. She is a "mouser" and a fanatic about moles both of which she readily dispatches when she can catch them. We fear that if she decided to catch a chicken is would be all over quickly so when they are out free ranging on our 55 acres we keep Milly close by or in the house. She doesn't mind since she is a really good napper.

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  120. Looking for a small dog, havent made up my mind yet,I do know it will not be a lab. Was thinking about seeing if the AMISH would have a that would like to give me.

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  121. We are still looking at plans for building a coop and run, so no chickens yet. Your last comment that sometimes it just isn't worth the chase, with the photo of your ten year old border collies watching the deer while lying in the shade of a tree reminds me of our sweet old collie when I was a child. In her younger days she had no tolerance for cats, but one day when she was in her teens, I got home from school and found her lying in the shade of our crab apple tree with the litter of four week old kittens from next door climbing on her. No growls, just an occasional wince when one would swat at her ear or get too close to her face. I slipped the kittens back through the hole in the fence and sat down and petted her without the disturbance of our raucous little neighbors.

    Rob rwwriley@gmail.com

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  122. I cannot let my chickens free range because my dog would get them for sure. She is a very sweet dog, she just is a hunter by nature. She has gotten used to seeing them in the fenced in yard and pretty much ignores them now but if one ever gets out I know it will be over for that one.
    susansbaxter@yahoo.com

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  123. I was having the hardest time getting our new batch of pullets into the chicken house at night. I read a post on Community Chickens about putting a light in the coop before dark. I WAS AMAZED! the post said about 3 days before they get the idea. These little girls got it the first night- they haven't gotten the roosting bar just yet, but at least I don't have to be a chicken wrangler every night. Thanks for the great info! ~Becky
    fluxbtrfly@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  124. I have a 6 year old pitbull and have had free range chickens for a little over 4 years. The key is socialization. I brought the dog around the brooder when I got the chicks, and when I handled the chicks I would let her smell them. I kept her on a leash the first time I let them roam the yard just in case. She now acts like the chickens are hers, and the chickens act like she is the rooster.

    ReplyDelete
  125. I have 12 year old pit bull and 5 year old Pomeranian we live in a rural part of Nevada an hour away from Las Vegas. The property we live on has a chicken coop but we have no chickens yet ( trying to talk my husband into it). Laurie --candeler@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  126. I have two dogs, a black Dalmatian and a black Pomeranian both 7 years old which we’ve had since they were 6 weeks old. I can't wait to make some of the Chicken Dog Treats for them. Thanks for sharing!

    We also have chickens, and three coops. They run and have the whole back and front yard to run around. The dogs don’t bother them, and they want to play with them at times. Susan - slb716@outlook.com

    ReplyDelete
  127. I've taught my dogs to watch over them; just like our sheep. They're herding dogs, so they also "gently" help me herd the chickens back into their coop in the evening which gives them a job!

    doloresraemiller@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  128. We have a 'rescue' german shepard from the pound, about two years old. We got chickens and I wanted to free range them. The dog plays 'chase' with the cat so we thought she would chase the chickens. We started out letting the chicks out only when we were around with her, and scolded her when she went to smell the chickens. (It helped that the chickens were not afraid of her and did not run) After only a few weeks she is so accustomed to them that we don't watch her, she actually watches out for the chicks. I have found her outside laying by where they are scratching and she will move around with them. They all eat treats together too!

    Thanks for the great site. ktlang@reagan.com

    ReplyDelete
  129. My dog encountered Chicken when I brought her for a visit to my friends farm...LOL
    She ran like the dickens with her tail between her legs, she was scared to death of them....LOL
    ababe28@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  130. as you said, your worries over the potential safety of the girls (chickens) was perhaps tempered by the age (maturity) of your dogs...I feel it was also somewhat due to the breed...does anyone have advice on how to succeed with a younger--much less protective breed- your protective border collies vs my two year old boykin spaniel).

    ReplyDelete

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