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Best dog for our needs

575 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  newcastlemama
What is the best dog for kids that won't eat our chickens and still be a guard dog too? Should probably be a bigger dog since it is a forested rural area with wildlife.....Thanks, Jennifer
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We have a Great Pyrenees livestock guardian dog who we absolutely love. He's super with the kids too. He doesn't challenge fences, but most Great Pyrs do, and you need serious fencing. We adopted him from (Great Pyr Rescue of Northern Calif) -- they certify some of their dogs as "family farm dogs", who have been tested with livestock and kids. The rescue org came to our farm twice to look at our needs, advice us on fencing options, and check the final fencing product. I believe their website library also has an article on livestock dogs and chickens -- I think it can be a bit tricky.

We have coyote (ate our sheep), and mountain lions and bobcats (loved our hens), but we haven't lost anyone since adopting our dog. We used to have guardian llamas and, even though they would charge new human visitors, they would ignore the coyotes.
There are some good books on choosing a dog/breed. I have a couple in my library, which is all packed in boxes right now, but check your local library or used books store.

I'd also encourage you to be open to adopting a mixed breed. We'd given up on finding a mixed breed and were looking for a sheltie from a good breeder when our vet called to say another military family was looking to rehome a collie/GSD mix. He turned out to be PERFECT for our family, and Alex has lived with us since October 2001.

I'm not anti-pure breeds, but in our experience, sometimes a mutt is the best fit.
subbing to the thread.
Do you all know anything about shar-peis? My mom loves hers but it is really spoiled! We are also considering a lab. The Great Pynrenees sound good too...I just don't know that I want to build a really big fence. We had great erman sherpards when I was a kid but they always had health problems and didn't
live long.
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