How to Prevent my Dog Attacking Chickens
If you live on a farm, one of the most common concerns is that, if you keep dogs, these start chasing and attacking the chickens. Often the coexistence between animals of different species is complex, but you do not have give up on this because following some guidelines and taking some precautions your chickens will be safe. Instinctively your dog thinks a chicken is prey to be hunted. At OneHowTo.com we explain how to prevent your dog from attacking chickens.
Your farm's chickens are a very attractive prey for your dog, and the key is to teach your pet that they are not. As always we stress the importance of an early education. Your dog should be educated and trained not to chase, attack or kill the chickens. Think that if the dog reaches them what will come naturally to the animal is to kill them, a very unpleasant situation that you can definitely avoid. Having your dog kill your own chickens is unpleasant and having them kill a neighbor's chickens can even pose a threat to your dog's life.
If your dog is attacking the chickens, you should start to work to change that behavior. Training your dog is an ongoing process and requires patience. No doubt you can teach your dog not to chase any bird. You can try to minimize the hunting instincts of your canine friend, and seriously train it so that this situation be less appealing.
You should take care to always keep your dog inside the house while you lock the chickens in the barn. Like this you will avoid them becoming nervous when they see the dog and have them fly or run around uncontrolled. Think that if your dog sees the chickens run it will really want to go after them and catch them.
Your dog should wear a collar at all times during the process of dog training. You should be able to monitor any changes in behavior and strength it has. Before your dog sees the chickens, we highly recommend that you take it for a long, brisk walk. If your dog is tired and with all the energy released, you can calmly face the moment of encountering the chickens.
Having made a strenuous walk, take your dog to the chicken barn without holding the lead very tightly. As you approach carefully, talk to your pet, look at its face, watch its reactions carefully until it starts to look at the birds and you detect the first signs of its behavior.
To stop your dog from attacking chickens you must keep the dog firmly besides you. When you see the chickens, it will start to get restless. Once that time comes, tell the dog calmly and with confidence to sit next to you. If you see him relaxed and without stress you should step away to give the dog more room. Monitor their behaviour from behind. If your dog turns looking for your approval, give it a treat and praise as a prize.
This process of accustoming your dog to the presence of the chickens is slow and you may have to repeat it many times to get to a state of normality. Keep watching your dog while looking at the chickens, moving slowly forward and backwards as your dog changes attitude in the presence of the birds. It is important that you use the command 'stop' every time you stop and back off. If your dog behaves well, give him a treat as reward.
And now is the moment to let the chickens out of the barn, once your dog ignores or is accustomed to the presence of the birds.
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