We will shoot, but we hate to.
Back in January, we had a neighbor's dog coming to our property (through a large field... we are not even within eyeshot of one another, so it's not like the dog was just sitting on his own porch and couldn't resist the sweet chickies). He killed or caused the death of 5 of our 3-month-old chicks -- caused their death by running them into the woods just before nightfall, which is pretty much a death sentence -- by tearing into their temporary outdoor run. Granted, the run was not a robust item, but we were very upset because we planned to let the chickens free-range during the day as adults.
Until we could secure a better plan, we put all the chickens into their old brooder -- a very sturdy cage on legs with hardware cloth for most of the bottom -- inside the shed. A week or two later, after being gone for 2 hours, we came home to a bloody, awful mess. The dog had gotten into the shed and proceeded to torment the chickens until they had beaten themselves halfway to death inside the brooder. Most of them were missing nails and several of them had toes hanging on by tiny strips of skin or bone. They were all in shock and covered in blood. I don't know many people who wouldn't be ready to shoot said dog after they spent the hours we did, washing off the blood, encouraging them to drink, cleaning the wounds, and amputating the unsaveable toes.
If I had ever seen that dog on my property again, he would have died. Period. Despite the fact that I had pity on him due to his owners, who keep their dogs *just* heavy enough that you can't get them for animal abuse (ribs showing, sometimes extreme starvation). We don't have "animal cops" around here... in the country, a nuisance dog is either shot or taken to the shelter, where it will almost certainly be put down. In this case, the dog being a Pittie, I would not have taken him to the shelter PERIOD, knowing that it's a favorite place for dog fighters to get free animals. It's revolting. I have Pitties and love them and would absolutely put a bullet through their heads before I allowed them to fall into the hands of hateful people.
This has turned into a novel, and I apologize. The dog was "put up" for a while after this, and I found out it was because he and some others killed someone's calf. This man told the owners he would keep his gun with him and shoot the dogs if they were seen off of their home property. But now I notice they have even more malnourished dogs and none of them restrained or supervised, so we'll see. I just wanted to add to the chorus of, "Your opinion might be different if you lived through it under these circumstances."