Nicole Alderman wrote:
I had not realized that certain breeds of dogs are more likely to attack livestock than others, or that once they'd eaten livestock, it would be hard/impossible to train them out of it. So, that would mean, right, that we should not get an adult rescue dog for our family?
Skandi Rogers wrote:I think the only breed of dog that cannot hurt livestock is one of the two I own, a pug, she can't hurt anything because of her stupidly overbred mouth and tiny size.
We also have a border collie/labrador mix. I had had her three years before we got any livestock (chickens,ducks, cows and horses she has met) To begin with chickens were very interesting but always being present when her and the chickens were free together and quick "no" when she got too close stopped that, the only time she is still bitey at them is if you pick one up and carry it, I think this is because we do that very rarely and normally when we do do it they are for slaughter and she gets the heads and feet. She has never had any interest in horses or cows, they are too big, although their leavings are delightful places to roll (in her opinion)
I don't think there is such a thing as a breed of dog that won't apart from those as in my opening sentence that physically cannot, however all dogs can be trained not to. I have not read the other thread, but I will say that if my dog suddenly decided to murder my livestock I would have her straight to the vet, sudden changes in behavior often have an underlying medical cause.
Chris Kott wrote:Herding isn't the same skillset as guarding. I wouldn't count on a herder to protect the same way as a guardian would.
Annie Collins wrote:What the quality of life with one's dog basically comes down to is effective obedience training. Good training accomplishes a few things: It teaches a dog self - control and inner discipline, has the dog listen to the taught commands the first time when told, both on-leash and off-leash, anywhere, anytime, and most importantly, opens up wide the line of communication and respect between owner and dog. Once that is established, one can teach a dog just about anything. I have been training dogs for over 40 years, professionally for the last 20. The best and most effective book by far that I have found to teach step by step how to effectively train one's dog is called The Koehler Method of Dog Training by William Koehler. He wrote a few training books, but that one would be the starting one which lays the basic obedience foundation. In it, he teaches how to have an off-leash reliable dog in about 10 weeks time (provided one does one's homework of about 30minutes/day). While I have made a few very minor teaks to the method, I have been following it and teaching it with incredible success. The man was a genius. Even though he is dead now, I still often find myself mentally giving him heartfelt thanks when working with a new dog in to train or observing a student's dog slowly metamorphose into a thinking, dignified animal that is also very obedient.
Todd Parr wrote:
When I started training dogs, I used a method similar to Koehler but less extreme. I came to view his methods as cruel and delved into dog psychology more deeply. My view now is that there are better, faster, and certainly more humane ways to train dogs. Anyone that thinks it is okay to hang a dog near to death by a choke collar or to smash it across the face with a stick encased by a rubber hose needs to be in a prison cell for animal cruelty. Both those "techniques" of training are in the book you named. And yes, im familiar with Koehlers justifications for his methods, as well as the movie star dogs he trained. I also realize the stick in a hose was for the most extreme cases. That in no way excuses that behavior. I have trained weight pulling champions and trained dogs to high levels of obedience without ever once hurting the dog, so I know there is a better way.
Annie Collins wrote:
The two methods you mentioned, picking a dog off of his/her front feet or giving a whack across the muzzle with a rubber covered long dowel rod, are only for an extreme case of a people-aggressive dog that is about to attack. They have nothing to do with the regular obedience training curriculum Koehler teaches which nowhere advocates hurting a dog, ever. It is such a shame that passages in Koehler's book get taken out of context and maligned because he decided to be honest enough to talk in his books about how to handle a people-aggressive dog. Many trainers won't deal with people-aggressive dogs; they don't know how and so don't want to get bitten or mauled. People-aggressive dogs typically either get medicated to the point of becoming zombie-like, which, if you ask me, is no quality of life, or simply get put down, which is the majority of cases of dogs with people aggression. Koehler, by briefly writing about how to deal with such a dog should one be about to be attacked, gave the tools to give such a dog a chance in life. If one knows of a way to deal with the aggression so one can move on to the obedience work, then that dog usually gets saved (provided they are with an owner that knows how to set consistent boundaries for a dog, in general). It is extremely rare, however, that either of the methods mentioned above are required and only about 1% of Koehler's book, if that much even, talks about the methods to use in such an extreme aggression scenario. They are not part of his training curriculum. Of the few hundred dogs I have trained or had in my training classes, there have only been two such extreme people-aggressive dogs. Everyone was trained using Koehler's basic obedience curriculum in which there is absolutely nothing that requires hurting the dog as you imply above, and which uses the simple tools of a couple of different length leashes, a properly fitted training collar, and lots of praise (all described in detail in his book). I would never advocate, use, or teach a training method that involves anything but fairness to a dog as well as respect for a dog's intelligence, and I would certainly not advocate any type of a training curriculum that involved pain. In all the years of training dogs and giving classes, I have found Koehler's obedience curriculum to be the only one that does all those things beautifully. The most rewarding and important part of his method to me, however, is that just by finishing the basic obedience curriculum, my dogs get to have the pleasure of going through life rarely wearing a leash, no matter if we are in the middle of a city or out in the country on a trail walk. They can be completely trusted to listen. I am always open and interested to learn about other methods that teach reliability to such a degree in such a short period of time, but so far I have not found any.
Burra Maluca wrote: I suspect that the instinct to herd is rather close to the instinct to hunt.
Judith Browning wrote:She was so willing and there was never any hitting or punishment in the training...just firm focused commands and perseverance.
Todd Parr wrote: Many, many trainers use clicker training and the like with great results, and without force.
Nicole Alderman wrote:We also don't have that much money, and I'm going to assume that feeding a very large breed like a livestock guardian dog would cost quite a bit of money...
Thalia Daniels wrote:Get a Golden Retriever.
Nicole Alderman wrote:
We also don't have that much money, and I'm going to assume that feeding a very large breed like a livestock guardian dog would cost quite a bit of money...