In the last post I discussed our predator issues. I mentioned that we had some issues with stray dogs and that we “dealt with it”. Well, here’s that story.
One morning we were hiking the property and 2 dogs showed up, followed us back to the house, and started chasing our chickens. Michael shot at the ground with his pistol to scare them and one took off but the other was unphased. As you can see in the photo to the left he was also not stopped by the hose. He just kept going after the chickens. We eventually caught him and locked him up in fenced area of our yard. I posted his photos on lost and found pet pages and didn’t hear anything all day. So, we put some blankets in a dog house that was in the fenced yard and fed him (he was SO skinny). The next day I started searching through old posts on the lost/found pet page and saw that same dog we had in our yard posted 3 different times (within 2 weeks) by different people who had found the dog and returned it to his “owner”.
I contacted the “owner” and returned the dog and had a chat with him about his dog going after our chickens. The “owner” told me “he won’t stay home”. I asked how he was escaping. I volunteered with a dog rescue for several years and have some experience containing dogs in fenced yards they want to escape from; I thought I could help the “owner” secure the dog… Well, he wasn’t technically escaping, they simply never secure him in any way. Ever. And had no intention to. Anyway, I gave the dog back to him and went home, feeling uneasy. Less than 24 hours later the dog was back! Chasing chickens again… grrr… Again, we caught him and locked him up. I wasn’t going to be bringing this dog back to his “owner” every day or worry about it showing up when the chickens were out and killing one… The local shelter has very few spots and is always full, so bringing a dog there is often a death sentence for someone. The common homesteader wisdom is “The 3 S’s – shoot, shovel, shut up”. But I’m not really down with shooting a puppy who hasn’t ever been taught better. We did the only thing we could think of and locked him up in our fenced yard again until the chickens went to roost then we let him out and hoping he’d go “home”.
NOPE. He wouldn’t leave. The next morning he was in that little dog house we have in our yard. Where we still find him every morning (don’t worry we ran heat to it for the winter).
This was in October…. The dog is still at our house and despite having every opportunity to leave, he won’t. Which I find strange considering I was told he “wouldn’t stay home” (not that strange, actually). In the meantime, we’ve been training him not to chase the chickens… It mostly works until he has a relapse. Now that he’s got some training, he’s a really great dog. He is very high energy but is eager to please. He just needed some direction on how to do that. He loves to chase… obviously. He gets along great with Bailey and is terrified enough of the cats that he doesn’t bother them. He wants nothing more than to be at our heels while we take on whatever task there is to be done (and chase things). He saw a pack he wanted to be a part of and made his little doggy-dreams come true.
So, everyone, meet Trigger, also known as Little Pup or L.P.