Anyone successfully teach their gsd to be reasonably trustworthy around pet goats? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 08:37 PM Thread Starter
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Anyone successfully teach their gsd to be reasonably trustworthy around pet goats?

So we have two bottle fed nigerian dwarf wethers who live in our fenced back yard and even come inside for treats a few times a week. They are our pets and we love the heck out of them! We have a female lab who is trustworthy with them. We had a female bullmastiff who was trustworthy with them. We now have a twelve week old gsd with medium prey drive who we are teaching not to harass the little guys. Its only been three weeks but going well so far! Has anyone else pulled this off with their gsd?
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post #2 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 09:14 PM
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I have three gsds who are trustworthy around my goats. I have four - three pygmys and one boer. I generally keep it to a one dog at a time limit when around the goats, the energy rises quite a bit when they are in a pack. But the dogs are very useful for helping to control the goats. I can leave gates open and the dogs will keep the goats from escaping, they keep the goats off of us if we are carrying something through the pens, and they will herd them back into their pens if they get out. I've also used the dogs (two at a time) to herd the ducks out of the creek when they decide they'd prefer to live down there lol.

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post #3 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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That is awesome! May I ask do you have a specific process for your training your puppies not to harass your goats? And do they do the herding behaviour naturally or is it trained?
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post #4 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 09:19 PM
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Well I don't do goats ... I do want a "Dwarf Horse" some day but that's another tangent. But the baby goats ... the rule is simple .. prey animal and "Cats 101." The dog never chases the cat! Same deal keep a leash on him if the goats are indoors and put him in place ... link here on training puppies in place ... near the end I think??

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The goats would be allowed to engage or not engage the puppy as they see fit. The puppy is not allowed to engage the goats. The goats ... are not your concern dog/puppy ... you do "nothing."
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post #5 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 09:30 PM
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Honestly, they aren't really trained. I moved to the country when two of the dogs were already adults and had never seen livestock. We've been here three years or so now. I have good obedience control on my dogs and good recalls so that is how we get by with the livestock. My youngest gsd was raised here, and I'm currently raising a cattle dog pup. They have little direct interaction with the goats as youngsters (aside from through a fence) - goats can be rather bold and you don't want to ruin the dog by it getting beaten on by a goat while its young and impressionable. As the pups have gotten older and more confident, I take them on leash doing chores in the goat pens, practise obedience and control. The control makes me feel safe, the herding instinct has seemed to just come on its own. They seem to learn where the goats belong and where I want them on their own. And I can 'down' them or recall them at any time so it works. No formal herding training at all.
At no point are any dogs allowed to run willy nilly with the goats. They do visit them through the fence all the time, but are only allowed in the goat pen under supervision.
I would really like to do some formal training though. I got a herding instinct test done last year on my two younger gsds and it was so amazing to see them work!
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post #6 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 09:35 PM
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Yes. I used to raise goats. we had a mixed herd of Nigerian dwarfs, some La Manchas and some mini manchas.

I had two GSDs at the time, one I still have, the other has passed. The one who is gone now was a confirmed killer of wild animals and livestock. I even got him to the point that he could carefully walk through the pastures of adult bucks with me.

My two victory moments with that dog were when baby kids crawled out of the little places I didn't know they could escape from and popped out in front of him and when I told him to leave it, he did. That's why I trained so hard, because I didn't want my dog imprisoned in the house and I knew eventually someone would pop out and either he'd rip their throat out or I would have trained him to the point that he wouldn't. I succeeded.

My other dog would only chase and would not follow through. But even chasing can kill. I stopped her from chasing fairly easily and she and my lab mix were the only ones allowed to actually bum around with me while I did chores and just freely mingle with the goats.

The killer dog never had liberty like that because it was still there, would always be there, and could be triggered. I even made sure to put 2x4 hole fencing on the fences that faced our yard so that goats could not stick heads or noses through, he would totally have grabbed any body part he could grab.

I sold some goats to a lady who had two GSDs and they were not very well trained or supervised. Their got into her pen and chewed up the buck I sold her pretty bad. He lived, she got rid of the dogs rather than train or contain them better.

I think my killer dog was unusual. He didn't go for legs or back ends he went straight to the throat for the kill shot, he was like a lion. He wore a basket muzzle during training with livestock for a LOOONG time until I had proofed and proofed and proofed
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post #7 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 09:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chip18 View Post
Well I don't do goats ... I do want a "Dwarf Horse" some day but that's another tangent. But the baby goats ... the rule is simple .. prey animal and "Cats 101." The dog never chases the cat! Same deal keep a leash on him if the goats are indoors and put him in place ... link here on training puppies in place ... near the end I think??

Fearful, Anxious or Flat Crazy "The Place CommanD - Boxer Forum : Boxer Breed Dog Forums

The goats would be allowed to engage or not engage the puppy as they see fit. The puppy is not allowed to engage the goats. The goats ... are not your concern dog/puppy ... you do "nothing."
Chip they're mini horses not dwarfs
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post #8 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 09:49 PM
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Yep - I have goats and GSD's.

I think it's easiest to strive for one of two types of dog/goat relationship. Either -

1. The goats are off-limit pets (like a cat or a house rabbit). Never to be stalked, chased, or bothered.

Or

2. The goats have to respect the dog in a livestock/herding application. The relationship is rooted in predator/prey, not roommates. Sometimes the dogs can interact with the goats, but only under your rules.

Option 1 is a lot easier to train, Option 2 has more variables but may be useful in the long run. If they're bottle babies, Option 2 may be more of a challenge because you don't have older herd animals for the young kids to learn from.
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post #9 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 10:19 PM
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Chip they're mini horses not dwarfs
LOL ... I have so much to learn ... but I did see that two are suggested ... I'm trying ... horse stuff.
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post #10 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 07:01 PM
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Actually, there are dwarf miniature horses. Chip they are sort of crippled looking.

My GSD was trained not to 'critter' using the ecollar. First she was trained No when going toward a calf or chicken. Then it was reinforced with the ecollar for going toward a forbidden creature. So now she veers off. This also works with deer. Chasing deer or calves can get a dog run over or shot. Also, those chickens are my pets and they have names. I used to have milk goats and next I am getting two sheep.
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