Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Dogs Barking

I don't know about everyone else who owns livestock, but every time I hear a dog bark outside at night I get antsy. This comes from having multiple dog attacks on my goats resulting in vicious deaths, slow deaths, miscarriages, and productivity hampering wounds. I have been lucky lately and haven't had a dog attack in some time (knock on wood), but I stay worried that tonight might be the night that I don't listen vigilantly enough and disaster strikes.

I tried livestock guardian dogs (LGD) from the beginning, but honestly they seemed to attract other dogs which led to attacks. Also they had the tendency to play too roughly with the goats and cause harm all on their own. I got rid of one of the LGDs and the other ran away never to be seen again a mere week after I paid to have her fixed.

I didn't plan it this way, but it seems my geese have turned out to be better deterrents then the dogs ever were. I lost a couple of geese to raccoons or possums when the younger generation were still adolescents, but the goose population here has been strong at 8 for a good while now. I can't prove that they have steered errant canines away, but ever since I have had them in the pen with the goats there has not been a dog attack. Multiple years now.

I still get nervous though and go on nightly patrols on occasion. A couple of our neighbors have dogs that bark incessantly all night long and when I am in my bedroom and the night is still sometimes it sounds like they are in the goat pen even though they are a good quarter to half mile away. That probably will never change now.

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Yours Truly,
The Crowsons