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Lazy afternoon yesterday. Chickens were out in the yard, I had headphones on listening to music, doors were closed (hot outside) and our GSD was sleeping next to me facing out the window.

She alerted to something so I looked at the front door thinking someone was approaching. Nothing. I told her to lie down, but now she had her hackles up and wanted outside. I looked into the yard and saw the coyote in the driveway approaching the chickens. I ran out and chased off the coyote then let our her out. She did a loop around the chickens then ran back to me wagging her tail, happy as could be.

The most surprising part was how she absolutely knew she did something great and carried herself with a bit of extra pride all afternoon.

What a good puppy:grin2:
 

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Yes, they do somehow sense threats. Inga alerted to a bear in the yard in the middle of the night last summer.

I had been at my isolated Oregon place with Inga for 4 months. Because it was a workcation I was mostly working on it and Inga did not get much training reinforcing the 30 commands she already knows. But I saw a new behavior that impressed me since I was staying out in a woods alone and I am a woman. By golly the dog is protective! Twice when strange men she did not know drove up and got out she came to my side ferociously barking. I took her by the collar and she stood up on her hind legs, walking forward on her hind legs with this ferocious barking. Who would not want to come past a dog like that. These men got right back in their trucks.

Another night I woke up and Inga was making a soft woof....woof. Be quiet I said. She continued woof....woof. I said Enough! That's her quiet command. She did not obey. She was by the door with this woof. I went and took her by the collar and opened the door. There was a bear in the yard. Up on her hind legs she went with loud barking and the bear ran off. She does like people and will accept an overture of friendship without herself making them. But with new people, especially men she gives me a quick look to see what I think. This is the best dog I have ever had!

How did you train your GSD to guard and not attack the chickens?
 

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Good dog! They are usually right. Will she have chicken for dinner as a reward? Doesn't have to be one you personally know ;)
 

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Yes, they do somehow sense threats. Inga alerted to a bear in the yard in the middle of the night last summer.

I had been at my isolated Oregon place with Inga for 4 months. Because it was a workcation I was mostly working on it and Inga did not get much training reinforcing the 30 commands she already knows. But I saw a new behavior that impressed me since I was staying out in a woods alone and I am a woman. By golly the dog is protective! Twice when strange men she did not know drove up and got out she came to my side ferociously barking. I took her by the collar and she stood up on her hind legs, walking forward on her hind legs with this ferocious barking. Who would not want to come past a dog like that. These men got right back in their trucks.

Another night I woke up and Inga was making a soft woof....woof. Be quiet I said. She continued woof....woof. I said Enough! That's her quiet command. She did not obey. She was by the door with this woof. I went and took her by the collar and opened the door. There was a bear in the yard. Up on her hind legs she went with loud barking and the bear ran off. She does like people and will accept an overture of friendship without herself making them. But with new people, especially men she gives me a quick look to see what I think. This is the best dog I have ever had!
I just got back from a week hiking the John Muir Trail, lots of bears. I have been told that if their is a dog in your camp the bears won't come around. I really wanted to bring our dog on this trip but decided against it, to many miles and too many days. She stayed home with my wife who said that by day two our gsd wouldn't leave her side and reacted to EVERY noise. Maybe they instinctively bump up their protectiveness when required.

How did you train your GSD to guard and not attack the chickens?
Wasn't easy and isn't perfect. Exposed her frequently to the chickens when she was a pup, hoped she would learn to relax around them. Nope, she REALLY wanted to chase them. Chasing led to catching and well, chickens are fragile so we lost a few. At about one year old we started using an e-collar on a fairly high stim. If she chased a chicken she got zapped. Fortunately she caught on quickly and the chasing ended. We still keep an eye on her when she's out with the chickens. Squeaky, fluffy, running, jumping "toys" all over the yard is awfully hard to ignore...
 

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Good dog! They are usually right. Will she have chicken for dinner as a reward? Doesn't have to be one you personally know ;)
Early on she regularly got raw chicken backs. Don't think she ever associated that with the fuzzy things in the yard though.

She ate well last night :wink2:
 

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To train her I commanded Inga to down right outside the henyard gate and opened it so the chickens would run right past her nose. If she focused her gaze on a running chicken she heard a NO! Bad! Relaxing as chickens ran right past her nose she heard Good Girl. It took about a week or two and now shes nonchalant and trustworthy with chickens. She lies on top of her doghouse and scans the fields for coyotes and barks that big aggressive bark if she sees one slinking across the pastures.

note: I only let the chickens out late in the affternoon. That way they don't stray too far or lay eggs out in the wild. When the hen tries to sit on them to hatch she will disappear in the night.
 

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"She did a loop around the chickens then ran back to me wagging her tail, happy as could be."

Aside from the itch to catch squeaky fuzzy play toys at first, Your description of what she did seems to indicate she has the instinct for herding.
What a good girl!
 
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