LGD Questions from a First Timer

Baymule

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Sheba’s thread. The picture of her looking scolded is on page 16.


Your dog is young, with consistent training, positive reinforcement and correction, she will suddenly come into her own and you’ll be thinking somebody switched dogs on you. LOL LOL
 

Goatsincoats99

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Sheba’s thread. The picture of her looking scolded is on page 16.


Your dog is young, with consistent training, positive reinforcement and correction, she will suddenly come into her own and you’ll be thinking somebody switched dogs on you. LOL LOL
Thank you so much! I will check out her thread!
 

Ridgetop

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I don't think you mentioned what breed your LGD is. Also, how many acres is she guarding?

One thing to remember is that you need to be sure it is boredom barking before punishing or reprimanding her since many times your dogs will bark at a threat that you can see or hear. It is important to acknowledge the warning bark even if you can't see it since the dog needs to know that she has backup. You are currently keeping her penned away from your animals. When you bring them in at night can you let her run over your acreage? Is it fenced for the dog? If she is bored at night and barking, allowing her access to the entire property will give her more to do. This only works if the property is properly fenced. Since it is covered with foxtails, maybe you could get a neighbor to cut it for you. Foxtails laying on the ground are much less likely to be picked up in ears and nose. Mowing will also encourage new growth of grass and forage for your herd.

As to eating the poop, it is possible that your dog is eating it to provide her with some missing vitamin or ? in her diet. Try adding 1/2 cup of rabbit pellets to her food. That is what we did in the olden days when our dogs would eat grass. Maybe she is eating the poop for that reason.
 

Goatsincoats99

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Ridgetop, thank you so much for the advice! She’s a great pyr. We have about 5 acres. The whole property is fenced and then the pasture is fenced within. All no climb, about 5 feet high, I’d say, minus the dog run which is 10 feet on one side (previous owner put it in—I’m not sure why so high there, but it’s nice fencing and I’m very grateful for it!). The pup can see the goats 90% of the time as they LOVE the dog run and hang out close by. The goats come into the dog run for a couple hours a day while I play and fuss with everyone and do chores. Yesterday the goats hung out in the dog run for a while as I watched from the house window, and the pup was great! She followed them around a bit, but mostly laid down in the middle of them.
She does accompany them down to goat shed. We let her wander a little bit in the meadow, but mostly keep her close as the burrs are attracted to her long fur. After we lock up the goats we run and play with her back up the hill and then play with her until she is exhausted.
I’ve weedwhacked a ton of the pasture myself—probably 4 acres of it—over the course of the last couple weeks, trying to make it safe for her and for fire season. We are super hilly so mowing is a challenge. Foxtails go to seed again after cut, just a little shorter this time. Next year I will know, and will seed the pasture with something native and get to weedwhacking much sooner.
The past two nights, the goats have refused to go in their shed. We encourage them in with a handful of grain in a bucket, but lately they just don’t want to. One is a little weird and has been a bit skittish, and has led the herd to a bit of a bedtime rodeo. I’ve been thinking it’s the heat and the long days lately. So for the past two nights, I’ve penned them in the chicken run (which shares a fence with the dog run). Pup can see them and they are close to the house, but I don’t have to worry about her chewing on their legs or something (she never has but I’m worried she will escalate if not supervised).
I stayed up last night to reprimand her idle barking as baymule suggested, but most of her barking was sporadic and serious (not the steady arf-arf-arf-arf-arf it sometimes is). I’d march outside and look around and talk to her, but never saw anything. Come to find out, our next door neighbor had a bear hit their chicken coop last night. Their chickens were fine, thank goodness, but still very scary. Not sure if the goats are safer up by the house and dog tonight or locked in their barn away from the house. I’m sure a bear could peel open the barn like a can of sardines if it really wanted to. But I will definitely be camping out and staying up tonight.

Also, that’s great advice about rabbit pellets. She does eat grass when out in the pasture, but I always thought she was mimicking the goats (as they’ll all stand around and munch together). I’ll see if I can pick up some supplemental feed today.
 

Baymule

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Yes a bear can tear into your goat barn. Stop and think about it….. your goats don’t want to go in it. They are happy to go in the chicken run next to their protector. Listen to your animals. They are talking to you the only way they know how. You can bet they know the bear is prowling about. Maybe the 5’ fence and a barking dog is a deterrent and the neighbor’s chicken coop was an easier target.
 
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