Loose country dog - a gripe

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flick:
A family down the road has a pit bull, probably 9-10 months old. He's a great dog - people-friendly, not dog aggressive (or maybe not yet). They bicycle down the road, and the dog follows them. Gets to our place, the dog makes a turn and harasses my purebred chickens. They're penned, but not against the determined attentions of a 65-lb dog.
I've given them a couple leashes and first requested, then demanded that they CONTROL THEIR DOG. Patiently explained, even in the country it's the law to keep their animal under control, their dog can legally be shot if it enters private property containing livestock.
It happened yet again today. My dogs barking, chickens shrieking, I ran out of the house with the gun, then saw it was that pit bull. Went out the gate, called him, he came away from the chickens. He's a Real Good Dog. Leashed him, put him in the truck, drove him back to his house. Chickens were all okay; he'd just been running around the pens.

Folks, if you move to the country, control your dogs. Please. Just because there's no leash law doesn't mean you can let 'em run everywhere.

flick 100785
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Michael A. Ball:
[nq:1]A family down the road has a pit bull, probably 9-10 months old. He's a great dog - people-friendly, not ... makes a turn and harasses my purebred chickens. They're penned, but not against the determined attentions of a 65-lb dog...[/nq]
I raised Rhode Island Reds, as a boy in 4-H. I wouldn't have stood for such harassment. Because laws differ greatly, there's no telling what your options are, but I'm certain you have the right to protect what's yours.
Considering your description of this dog, I hope you can avoid harming him. Here, you could capture the dog and have animal control pick it up or take it to the animal shelter, yourself. Without video, or an animal control officer seeing the dog harassing the chickens, you won't have a case, in court.
In my opinion, it is already time for you to get serious about this problem. Make sure of your rights, regarding capturing this dog on your property and let animal control handle it from there.

NOTE: some shelters Never make pit bulls available for adoption, regardless of how nice they are. If that's the case where you live, please, don't let the dog go there. Gather your video/photographic evidence and get animal control to cite them into court. You will have to appear with animal control.
Another approach: after the family has gone just out of sight, fire one or two shots into the ground. Then run to the road and ask if the dog is hurt bad. They probably won't know what you're talking about; so, you have to tell them that you took a couple of shots at their dog; and because he yelped, you thought he might be dead. (Do not take your gun to the road.) If the care about the dog any at all, that ought to shake them up!

A dog's life is too short; their only fault really.
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Judith Althouse:
Flick,I am sorry about your problem with your chickens being harrassed by the neighbor's Pit Bull. It is so nice of you to acknowledge that he is a nice dog despite the fact that his owner's aren't responsible. My sister has chickens and they are always being terrorized by something, wild dog packs, foxes, Bob cat (she trapped him) hawks. I have 2 Pit Bulls that I have rescued. One I am keeping, the other I am trying to re-locate. The reason I didn't turn him in is because where I live they do not allow them a chance to find a home regardless of their temperament.

It may not be that way where you live. I don't know if this Pit Bull "visits" other homes with livestock, but if he does and is successful at getting at chickens or some other small animal his desire to get at yours may very well escalate. I think "guardian" has a great idea about the pretend attempt at shooting at him. However, I don't know your gun laws, so that could end in trouble. Something tells me the neighbors aren't gonna care anyway. I don't pretend to be a Pit Bull expert but I can say this from my 14 months of owning one.

Their behavior can change/escalate with age. I wish I had a great answer for you. I wish you the best of luck and hope that your chickens stay safe.
Too bad you can't find a new home for the Pit Bull, after a heart to heart with the neighbors I think I would take the dog for a ride one night to his new house where he would be cared for and kept contained...Finding a home for a Pit Bull where I live is nigh on to impossible.
I am sure you would have been within your rights to kill him, but I am glad you didn't.
I wish you and the chicks the very best of luck..Be sure to let us know the outcome.
Judy
Be Free,
Judy
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flick:
[nq:1]I raised Rhode Island Reds, as a boy in 4-H. I wouldn't have stood for such harassment. Because laws differ ... Without video, or an animal control officer seeing the dog harassing the chickens, you won't have a case, in court.[/nq]
That is my fervent hope, that I can avoid harming this dog. He's a Good Dog with clueless owners.
Where we live, I'm allowed to shoot him. Had I not known this dog, I probably would have, bec. I don't wanna get hurt pulling a strange dog away from its prey.
[nq:1]In my opinion, it is already time for you to get serious about this problem. Make sure of your rights, regarding capturing this dog on your property and let animal control handle it from there.[/nq]
Unfortunately, there is no animal control here, and no shelter, so it's up to me to do something. It didn't do any good to talk to the owners :-/. Maybe local law enforcement would have a chat with them.

It still astounds me, that these people don't see the wisdom and necessity of A LEASH.
[nq:1]NOTE: some shelters Never make pit bulls available for adoption, regardless of how nice they are. If that's the case ... your gun to the road.) If the care about the dog any at all, that ought to shake them up![/nq]
That isn't a bad idea. Thanks!
I've now talked this over with a couple Real Life friends, and one loaned me a livestock fence charger. I'll put a couple hotwires around the area where the chickens are. Hopefully if he comes back, he'll get zapped and forego his "detour" in future.
flick 100785
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flick:
[nq:1]Flick, I am sorry about your problem with your chickens being harrassed by the neighbor's Pit Bull. It is so ... you didn't. I wish you and the chicks the very best of luck..Be sure to let us know the outcome.[/nq]
Thank you, Judy :-).
I'd be tempted to keep him myself, but we can't afford another dog, plus segregating him would be quite difficult.
I'm hoping if he comes back, he'll get zapped with the hotwire(s) and decide chasing chickens isn't fun. It's highly unlikely that I'd get in trouble for shooting him, but I'll avoid that if at all possible.

I'll also try to locate a potential home for him, to be prepared if it comes to that.
flick 100785
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Sionnach:
[nq:1]It still astounds me, that these people don't see the wisdom and[/nq]
[nq:2]necessity of A LEASH.[/nq]
The problem is overall lack of training and supervision, not lack of a leash. Even if your eejit neighbors HAD a leash, and walked the dog on it, I'm betting they wouldn't be able to control him; odds are good he'd be yanking the leash away and taking off.
OTOH, I know dozens of dogs (including mine) who could unleashed in the vicinity of your chickens, and your chickens would perfectly safe - because the dogs are A. TRAINED and B. would be UNDER SUPERVISION.
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Melinda Shore:
[nq:1]The problem is overall lack of training and supervision, not lack of a leash.[/nq]
Nah. It's common for people in rural areas think it's okay to let their dogs run. If they didn't think it was okay they might be motivated to do something about. Lack of training (which is an open question, BTW) would be a symptom, not a root cause.

Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis - (Email Removed)

Bad policies lead to bad results.
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Shelly:
[nq:1]Nah. It's common for people in rural areas think it's okay to let their dogs run. If they didn't think ... do something about. Lack of training (which is an open question, BTW) would be a symptom, not a root cause.[/nq]
Amen. I'm currently (again!) having to deal with my neighbor's loose dogs, this time in the form of a very intact Redbone who, it seems, lives to saturate my car and trash cans with pee. Drives Harriet batshit crazy, to the point of foaming at the mouth. She's not keen on interlopers, but this boy is apparently beyond the pale.

The owner is a state trooper, of all things. Ya'd think he'd have a friggin' clue.
The dog is, thankfully, thoroughly nice, in a bumpass hound sorta way.

Shelly (Warning: see label for details)
http://www.cat-sidh.net (the Mother Ship)
http://esther.cat-sidh.net (Letters to Esther)
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Sionnach:
[nq:2]The problem is overall lack of training and supervision, not lack of a leash.[/nq]
[nq:1]Nah. It's common for people in rural areas think it's okay to let their dogs run.[/nq]
Newsflash: Lack of SUPERVISON=letting dog run loose.
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