newbie - wow am freaking out a bit!

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11 years 8 months ago #24834 by Thunda
I have just moved to 12 acres - which has been a dream of mine since i was about 5yrs old - am now 40(something).
Have moved my 3 horses who are angels and well behaved, have also moved my 2 very urban dogs! There were 7 sheep left on the property to cross graze with the horses. One of my dogs chased the sheep in a fenzy on arrival, he didn't bite them but cut one out of the herd and bailed it up aginst a gate. When the sheep stopped and faced him - he backed off! meanwhile the other 6 sheep crashed through a gate and ran around the rest of the property. My 7 year old nephew is yelling at me trying to catch the sheep saying he bet the neighbours were watching and this was going to be on you tube!
The 7 sheep are now in a dog proof paddock, the dogs are now getting used to all the freedom, but i am a bit of a wreck!
I had visions of getting chickens and having the sheep graze with my horses. the neighbour said i needed to get my sheeps dags cut off - i said who do i call about that - she looked at me and like i was crazy and said i need to deal with it myself :confused:
My property is well fenced but my crazy urban dog (Golden Retriever) is making me nervous, will he eat the neighbours lambs, will he chase the neighbours goat? will my sheep ever get to live with my horses?
Maybe i will give the sheep away and get a couple of big cows who can stand up to the dog - he only chases if things run away[:I]
Any ideas PLEASE for how to safely introduce a Golden Retriever to stock so he doesn't eat them, he is fine with horses and has been around cows before and was fine then too. Also didn't seem to want to attack anythoing - just chase....
This really is a dream come true for me and I do want to get it right but I feel like a bit of a dork right now! :D
This website is incredibly helpful - hope to make some great contacts and absorb as much advice as possible.

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11 years 8 months ago #349760 by cowvet
rural ettiquette would be that you deal with the dog issue pronto. as soon as it learns the fun of the chase then you will have untold trouble keeping it away from stock (yours and other peoples).
Farmers SHOOT dogs found wandering on their properties especially if they are in with livestock.
Our working dogs on the farm are under strict control ALL of the time - if they are not working then they are kenneled or chained. Our expectation is that our neighbours do the same.

I think your first priority is to have an area that the dogs stay in when not under your direct control...somewhere they can not get out of. Letting them wander the property will lead to disaster and heartbreak - that I can assure you of from what you have told us so far.


I love animals...they're delicious

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11 years 8 months ago #349764 by witheze
Oh dear not good! Dogs that chase (will later go onto kill) MUST be contained. Never mind youtube, worry about the bush telegraph. You will need to have yards to dag and shear the sheep? There is sure to be a mobile shearer somewhere in your district......and you will need to worm and treat feet too. Maybe sell the sheep!

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11 years 8 months ago #349766 by Thunda
Hi there, I have yards for the sheep to be shorn in etc and the dog is definitely contained when i am not at home. i have left him for 1 hour, then 3 hours etc until I am confident I can go out for the day and he stays at my house (he is fenced in with wooden fences not just wire. When I go out on the land I put a 12 metre rope on him so if he chases anything i can grab him.
Since the initial incident he hasn't tried to chase anything (but has been kept away from the sheep). the neighbours have sheep and lambs and he has made no attempt to go through the fence to them. I have spoken to my neighbours and phoned those I didn't see to tell them about the dog and told them to let me know any issues they have and that i understood he would be shot if he attacked their stock. I am trying to be very responsible and deal with this ASAP.
Do you think he can be trained out of this? He is 7 years old and is quite obediant apart from this.

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11 years 8 months ago #349767 by stephclark
oh dear..dont feel like a dork! we have all been there .. i was the same as you.. all hell broke loose when i moved onto my 10 acres.. 5 horses, 6 chooks and a townie dog.. dog ate chooks, horses broke down bad fencing and dispersed through out the neighbourhood..i was surrounded by ' old farmers' who were not particulalry sympathtic to my attempts and apologies..i had soo many tellings off i wanted to lock myself in the house a cringe :D
it gets better.. but the dog is a major..quite right.. the more he chases the more he enjoys and the more he will do..drastic, prompt action required..vigilance and an electric collar..( as well as fenced in when unattended ).. if he even looks at the sheep when out..zap him..its harsh but wont kill him ( a shot from the neighbour will ).. he will soon learn that the woolies are no fun :)
as for sheep.. i pretty much put them in the too hard basket.. they always seem to need something doing.. bums,feet,shearing,worming,exema, lambing.. blimin heck.. beefies?.. bung em in a paddock with grass and water, check em every no and again and then eat them.. not hard..
maybe forget sheep for now .. until you get the hang of it all and find your feet..
good luck.. chin up.. there is plenty of support here :D

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11 years 8 months ago #349770 by stephclark
oopps.. messages crossed.. sounds very responsible of you and well done for talking to the neighbours.. i had a german shephard who made a point of cleaning up all the new born lambs and calves.. if i hadnt spoken to the neighbours, she would have been shot.. but the neighbours were fine once they saw the dog was just suffering a repressed maternal instinct and did no harm :D ..

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11 years 8 months ago #349771 by igor
There is no such thing as a dog proof paddock. As cowvet says wandering dogs will be shot in the country. You might find that an electric collar is a good aid to training your dogs to avoid the stock. A bit of aversion therapy. My brother and his friends use one to train their pig hunting dogs. Those dogs are trained to only chase pigs. They learn to ignore anything else.
How did it go when you put the horses and sheep together? They should be okay.

Three more posts popped up while I was typing this. Must be that time of the day.

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11 years 8 months ago #349781 by Thunda
Stephclark - thanks so much for your post, I was in tears a minute ago and I feel a bit better now. I will see if I can get rid of the sheep and invest in an electric collar for him. A neighbour has offered to run her cows through the property to get the grass down as it is currently far too lush for the horses.
Igor - the sheep and horses aree fine together - it's just the sheep chasing dog that is an issue.

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11 years 8 months ago #349782 by stephclark
:) :) :) .. no need for tears!.. its all part of the fun and it works itself out in the end.. i could have you in stitches with stories of escaped pigs, show jumping cows, mad dogs and stray everything else.. all 25 years worth.. you will be laffing yourself in a couple of months.. :)
nice of neighbour to offer to knock the top off the long grass.. maybe in exchange for some beef for the freezer?..grazing is not cheep, so dont be tempted to give it away..[;)]..there will be weaner calves around soon... get a couple of them and they will thrive on your grass and quickly turn into freezer pack and the rates payment.. get chookies.. they are fun and give you great eggs as well.. endless entertainment value..

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11 years 8 months ago #349783 by Thunda
Neighbour said she would pay for the grazing as she is incredibly over stocked - whats the going rate for grazing?
I have no idea what to charge her - she also wants her daughter to be able to ride on teh paddocks - I was so greatful for a friendly face I said yes!
Someone said $10.00 per week per cow but that seems alot.

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11 years 8 months ago #349784 by stephclark
cant help there.. auckland is silly pricing.. i am sure someone down that way will have a good idea.. :)

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11 years 8 months ago #349785 by sod
Thunda good on you for dealing with it quickly dont worry neighbours will see that as well. Work out grazing price with her and then all be happy plus regrowth will be better for weaner calves as Steph said good way to go but dont let her stock graze it down too hard. I agree with getting rid of sheep :D (white woolly ground lice) nothing but trouble LOl

Having time is a measure of enthusiasm:rolleyes:

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11 years 8 months ago #349786 by cowvet

Thunda;339380 wrote: Do you think he can be trained out of this? He is 7 years old and is quite obediant apart from this.


the dog is showing its natural instinct. Do I think a dog can be trained with 100% reliability to not show this natural behaviour - NO - and they should not be given the chance.

I have actually seen a couple of dog versus stock attacks in action...it is not nice and one thing that stands out in my mind is that the dog sort of goes into a robotic killing mode and is oblivious to anything else going on around them so shouting commands etc can be quite pointless.

Better tears now thinking about it rather than tears later over a shot dog....blunt but very true.


I love animals...they're delicious

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11 years 8 months ago #349788 by RaeM
That is why our hunterway X heading dog has been put down, as we could not get a stop on her, she would muster the cattle, and the sheep given any chance of being off the chain or rope, having the ewes and lambs crushed up agaist the road fence was the beginning of the end for her, as if a lamb had popped out onto the main road, we would never had been able to catch it, without getting involved in a car accident. We are leaving our place to a farmsitter at the end of the month, and could not expect the lady to go chasing after a dog with the motorbike to try to head her off. We will get another straight hunterway once we get back, and yes we did have a electric collar, had given to a friend to use, and its no longer working, so that was not an option for us to use.

RaeM

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11 years 8 months ago #349789 by stephclark
oh doom doom !... a hunterway is a very different proposition to a golden retriever... i would have thought the retriever instinct would be more to bringing back ducks .. a hunterway is bred to muster and work sheep.. i realy think this chap is just an over excited townie chap who, obviously with close supervision and a firm hand, will just loose interest.. hes good with horses and cattle.. have faith

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