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Kimber tangled with Cougar!! Underdogged.

Discussion in 'Livestock Guardians' started by dejavoodoo114, Nov 13, 2017.

  1. Nov 13, 2017
    dejavoodoo114

    dejavoodoo114 True BYH Addict

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    Some of you already know my history and struggles, for those of you who don't I will outline them here. I have had two GPs for over 5 years, Smith and Wesson.

    Smith is the older one by a few months, he loves babies of all species but once they grow up he looses interest. He prefers to stay at the house and chase humans away, we love him for this, but if Wesson started chasing off coyotes, Smith would get up, look at Wesson, act like he was going to assist, then sit back down like "eh, he has this"... :he

    Wesson has almost always been our super star (there were times when he was a puppy...). Anyway, Wesson protected the goats, the pigs, and the chickens (and our neighbors calves) very well. We stopped loosing any chickens around the time Wesson hit 18 months. Then a while later we started loosing them again, next thing we know, Wesson is chasing away hawks from our property. No more dead chickens, chewed up goats or chewed up pigs. The next few years were great, we never had to worry about the animals because Wesson had our back.:bow

    Then last summer Wesson got sick with Neospora. :thThis is a protozoa and is not curable once it gets into a dogs spinal chord. We were able to stop the progression but the damage was done. Somewhere around 80 chickens dead in two weeks and suddenly we were seeing coyotes again! :barnie

    We already knew that we needed more LGDs to protect our quickly growing herds and had been looking at different breeds for the past year. Suddenly, instead of buying puppies the next Spring and letting Wesson train them, we needed them right away. We had already narrowed down our search to 1) Akbash, 2) Kangal, 3) Anatolian. After talking to multiple breeders and seeing the first two we realized they were not the right fit for our farm situation. While looking at them though, we ran across the Boz. In September of 2016, Kimber arrived. :love

    Kimber was everything we had hoped for. Her breeder was amazing and raised her right. She was comfortable and calm around the pigs and goats from the get go. Wesson didn't want her around the chickens for the first few weeks so we respected his wishes. Of course, Kimber is fine around the chickens as well.

    In January, our next Boz, Vulcan, arrived. His breeder knew he had issues and sent him to me knowing I would never breed him and pass on his problems. Unfortunately, while he has good instincts, his joints will confine him to the same small pasture as Wesson. Both Vulcan and Wesson are good as long as they don't have to travel too far.

    This brings us to where we were last week, one young LGD, Kimber, who is doing a good job protecting the goats and sundry, two crippled LGDs, Wesson and Vulcan, and one LGD who only cares about chasing people away not four legged predators. ONE HEALTHY DECENT LGD IS NOT ENOUGH TO PROTECT 32 ACRES, over a hundred chickens, goats, and pigs!!! :barnieWe knew this, we were hoping that if Kimber continued to be Little Miss Awesome and healthy to boot, we would breed her. The pups would help us/her with having the RIGHT amount of LGDs for our farm. We simply could not afford to purchase another at this time with everything else that has been going on.

    This is what happens when an LGD doesn't have back up! :he:hit:somad
    20171111_133450.jpg 20171111_133503.jpg 20171111_134643.jpg

    Friday night Kimber was fine. Saturday we went out to the front and she came up to us like this. I hung up on my neighbor and called the vet. While waiting for a call back, I checked the others. None of them even had a scratch. I was not surprised, none of them have a chance of keeping up with Kimber. Luckily my vet called me back quickly and Kimber loaded willingly, if painfully, into the van. (I am so glad I worked with her on her vehicle issues!) There were two of my vets there even though the clinic was closed. The first, who I talked to over the phone, was surprised and said "that is even worse than you said!" (I really don't think so, I think it was because I wasn't freaking out:duc) My other vet saw her as well, "Wow, that's bad!" :he:he Yes, that is why I brought her... On a weekend... and didn't take care of it myself... :he:he Kimber recognized her and went straight up to her for love. The vet was able to manipulate it and get a good idea of how bad it was.

    Now, this is the vet where I work. Kimber wasn't the only emergency and they were didn't have enough help. I helped sedate Kimber and got her on the table, then went to assist in an emergency goat c-section. I know, leaving Kimber was terrible. I did it for three reasons, 1) I have helped clean a lot of wounds and have never seen or assisted in a goat c-section:hide, 2) I absolutely trusted the vet who was working on her, and 3) the other assistant they had has helped a lot with wound cleaning and doesn't care for livestock but I do. :hu We finished the goat long before they finished cleaning out Kimber's injury.

    20171111_162204.jpg

    Kimber was under for more than 3 hours while they cleaned out the wound and assessed the damage to the muscles.
    This is what they found:
    • Both holes in the skin were fairly smooth
    • There was only one puncture in the skin located between the two holes
    • There were punctures in the muscle that were not easy to find
    • Tooth or claw made its way in between her ribs and messed up some cartilage
    • The muscles were so swollen/filled they had a really hard time determining the extent of the damage
    Conclusions:
    • Ruled out: Barbed wire, neighbors bull, car, coyote/dog, gunshot, anything small
    • Whatever it was had a lot of power behind the bite or swipe to cause that kind of trauma to the muscles
    • Claws or teeth were used
    20171111_164305.jpg 20171111_164308.jpg 20171111_164318.jpg 20171111_172838.jpg
     
    Baymule likes this.
  2. Nov 13, 2017
    dejavoodoo114

    dejavoodoo114 True BYH Addict

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    This breed doesn't do well under sedation or anesthesia. I warned the vet of that but she started waking up during surgery so they gave her another dose of sedative. Because of this, Kimber took hours to come to after the surgery. Rather than reversing her I stayed and assisted with the other emergencies that were coming in. Kimber spent her time from 6:30 pm until she finally really woke up at 11:30 pm on the floor in the middle of the work area.

    20171111_174402.jpg 20171111_174415.jpg 20171111_201134.jpg 20171111_201155.jpg

    We spent the evening stepping over and around her while caring for the other emergencies. I think she liked it the few times she woke up because every any of us went around or near her she got more attention. Honestly, I started thinking she was hamming it up... :thBut I didn't care.

    20171111_224714.jpg

    Even with the long recovery time, she still started getting sick in the car when we got close to home. She waited a bit before bothering to get out of the van (I wasn't about to hurry her), I tried to help her but I think she knew better what to do and what not to do than I did.

    Kimber's home for the next few weeks will be in the house. Luckily I have made sure all my LGDs are potty trained for this kind of situation. At the moment, Kimber is only standing if she needs to go to the bathroom. She walks to the door and just stares at it. We put a leash on her and take her out. She has no problems coming back inside while she is feeling this badly. She has to take 5 pills twice a day. Instead of fighting with her (you can't sneak pills past her) I have already started teaching her that pills are good things. Remember this, if you ever have to give your dogs pills, always give really great treats afterwards. After getting the dog treats Saturday night and Sunday morning, Kimber was a little less resistant for Saturday night's dose. After receiving a nice juicy chunk of deer liver Saturday night, she was downright easy this morning!!! She just let me put the pills in, swallowed, and looked straight at the liver in my youngest DS's hands. We are hopeful that her muscles will heal properly and not cause problems.

    Yesterday, a pitt bull was in my goat pasture chasing my goats. Shall we cover the dog situation again? I have 2 cripples, 1 who doesn't care, and NOW 1 who is stuck in the house injured..... 4 LGDs - 4 LGDs = 0 LGDs guarding my livestock!


    The moral of the story is this; please, please, please make sure you have the right amount of LGDs for your farm, fencing, livestock, and predator load!!!
     
    Baymule likes this.
  3. Nov 13, 2017
    Pastor Dave

    Pastor Dave True BYH Addict

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    Cougar or bear?
     
  4. Nov 13, 2017
    Hens and Roos

    Hens and Roos Herd Master

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    oh wow poor girl- sorry to see that she is injured. :hugs :fl for a smooth recovery.
     
  5. Nov 13, 2017
    dejavoodoo114

    dejavoodoo114 True BYH Addict

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    @Pastor Dave, I forgot to mention in the post... We have had black bears a few times on our property. The pyrs always chased them off. However, Kimber is Considerably faster than they are even at their best and could have easily caught up to one. We have cougars in my county for sure. One of my friends had goats, horses, and her dogs attacked and killed by one (or more) over the years. But she is 45 minutes north of me through a pass and a ridge separates us. We have had no evidence of one around where I live.

    @Hens and Roos, :hugs us too!
     
  6. Nov 13, 2017
    Southern by choice

    Southern by choice Herd Master

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    I talked with @dejavoodoo114 last night- After setting aside the emotional aspect and worrying about Kimber we talked about how important it is for people to see and know these things. Thank you Deja for posting!
    The efforts of deja to be fully covered have just been a nightmare- it certainly has not been because of a mindset of "I don't need more than one"
    I am so glad she put this post up for a few reasons...

    1) no matter how many phone consults I do I still hear how "I don't think we need more than one dog" - going over and over why under-dogging is so dangerous

    2) understanding that LGD's can end up like this- often people forget this and have NO plan if something like this happens

    3) training your lgd to trust you, be able to come into the house or some place for safe recuperation without the dog freaking out is critical- being able to handle your LGD in a crisis is imperative

    4) Notice the attempts to fully dog the property- this is commendable

    5) Fencing fencing fencing is important! Also land size. Some will read this and say well 30 acres justifies more than one dog- I only have 5 acres blah blah blah-
    LAND SIZE is irrelevant! Dog for predator type/load/and number of livestock.

    Deja thanks for posting again! Smooches to Kimber tell her that her Auntie Southern loves her. (she won't care but it'll make me feel better)
    :hugs:hugs:hugs
     
  7. Nov 13, 2017
    Sara Ranch

    Sara Ranch Ridin' The Range

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    @dejavoodoo114 - *hugs* to both of you! I hope Kimber makes a full recovery.
     
    dejavoodoo114 likes this.
  8. Nov 13, 2017
    babsbag

    babsbag Herd Master

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    I am so sorry about your baby. I know these are working dogs but I also know that they are much more than that to you. Sounds like you are going to be looking for another dog or two, but in the meantime...OUCH...what to do is a real problem. Praying that she heals up quickly with no problems.
     
    dejavoodoo114 and Pastor Dave like this.
  9. Nov 13, 2017
    LocoYokel

    LocoYokel Loving the herd life

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    What a beautiful dog and what a nasty wound! Wishing her a fast recovery...:hugs
     
    Pastor Dave likes this.
  10. Nov 13, 2017
    Latestarter

    Latestarter Novice; "Practicing" Animal Husbandry Golden Herd Member

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    So so sorry that this has happened to you and Kimber. :hit You've tried so hard to do it right and "dog up", but have been hit with one thing after another. I'm thankful that you didn't outright lose her to whatever did this. I hope whatever it was paid a similar price. Best wishes that she recovers fully from this ordeal and isn't marred physically or mentally from it. I'm sure she'll be happy to be back with her animals when that time comes. Meanwhile, there'd be a hole needing dug for that pit bull. :somad :hugs