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Homestead and Livestock Guardians / LGDs  RSS feed

 
Huckleberry Leonard
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We have a team of Great Pyrenees on our cooperative homestead that keep the place 100% predator-free. They are amazing and I learn so much from them. They are  incredibly good at their job and they are also pure love...kind, compassionate, beautiful, even funny! As a zoologist, I find the relationships of the pack so fascinating.
But the main thing I know is we've never had a single predator attack or even a deer-nibble on any of the hundreds of fruit and nut trees I've planted. This year we had over 50 free-ranging ducklings born and almost as many chicks. We haven't lost a single one even though they are totally free-ranging. The homestead is surrounded by thousands of acres of timberland with lots of predators so it's pretty amazing.

We currently have 3 puppies, 3 months old, that are seeking their forever home with a wonderful family on a Permaculture homestead. I believe dogs come to Earth with a special destiny, to be companions to a certain special individual or family. I have it in my head that these particular puppies are going to find their destiny here, on permies.com.  These are working pups so it's important that they find the RIGHT place with the right people so they can do their job.

These pups are incredibly strong, healthy and well-socialized with people, livestock and other dogs. They've been raised on a steady diet of raw cow and sheep milk that I milk everyday, fresh duck and chicken eggs, and raw and cooked meat, fat and bones. I work for the local butcher and they get more than they can eat everyday. Their bowl is never empty. This litter even had two moms. A female from a previous litter who has never been pregnant wanted to be helpful. She jumped in and helped care for them from the birth and actually started producing milk. She team-nursed them for 6 weeks! These puppies are very well-nourished and well-loved and cared for. They've had the best puppy-hood anyone can imagine. They learn what they're supposed to do by watching and training with the older dogs. They have total freedom to explore their environment and may come and go at will. As a result, they are already incredibly competent.

We're located on the southern Olympic Peninsula. If you're nearby and needing an LGD, I'd love to talk to you, especially if you feel in your heart these must be the right dogs for you. There is a re-homing fee we can discuss by phone. We're open to trades too. 

We prefer to adopt sibling pairs unless the adopting family already has an LGD. They work best in teams. After all, coyotes work in teams too. A single LGD can be vulnerable.
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Thekla McDaniels
gardener
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Location: Grand Valley of Colorado's Western Slope
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What beautiful dogs.

I am not currently in need of a LGD, I have a 7 year old Komondor, who is doing a fine job.  But when I need another pair, I hope you'll have some pups.  I knew nothing about LGDs before I got mine.  I thought she and her litter mate would guard the chickens, and that did not work too well. 

I just had my daughter's Komondor pup for 6 months.  He was a real character, and things are a lot quieter with out him.

It is really important that you get your LGD when they are young, and if you want them to be part of the family, you raise them taht way, and if you want them outside as working dogs, you (or the livestock they are to guard) raise them.  They are great either way, just they have to learn their job while they are growing up.

I am mostly posting to say that if you can get a pup from a working line, a LGD is a wonderful partner.  And these look like they are from a good line.

If you are considering an LGD ask  your questions.  There are plenty of us LGD owners on Permies, and you can get answers from people who have no personal interest in selling the pups.
 
Huckleberry Leonard
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Thanks for this post. I concur! Do your research first! Great Pyrenees are willful and independent creatures capable of covering vast territories with ease. It's not simple to find a good home for them.

They are also noble creatures capable of great love and compassion. They are good effective trustworthy protectors and friends...for the right people living in the right place.

About chickens; our LGDs are now protecting over 100 free-ranging ducks and chickens. The poultry are even free at night at this point and totally safe. We haven't lost a single bird to either predator or dog. It's true, most pups do have to learn about poultry somewhere between two and six months old. We teach them "Leave IT!" and reward them when they do. This method takes great patience and good timing but they get it soon enough. The older dogs actually scold young pups who chase chickens for fun. We're learning to work with pups using positive reinforcement and sometimes clickers rather than punishment. They absolutely want to be good so it's just a matter of communication.

As their human, it is important to be their alpha leader but we leave the scolding to the canines and work more with rewards, love and encouragement. It seems to work really well in my experience as the outcome is happy, balanced, trustworthy dogs who are free of any trauma-related issues.
   
 
Eric Bee
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Huckleberry, It's refreshing to see someone who understands working with the dogs and respecting their needs and nature.
 
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