Monday, February 14, 2011


The neighbor's 2 dogs escaped this morning and in front of Rob who was shouting and spraying it with water and the owner calling them, one of the dogs took off with one of the 2 month old Rhode Island Red rooster chicks I had bought myself for Christmas in it's mouth.

Why do I feel like I should be singing this to a country tune? 

The irony was that it was the husband of the neighbor that told me Monday we couldn't keep the goats. Rob -in his frustrated anger and not knowing it was that neighbor- commented about us having to get rid of baby goats yet dogs that are causing harm are allowed.

The dogs took off with their bounty. The neighbor followed after them. Then he came back a few minutes later cradling a half dead baby rooster in his arms. He's offered to pay for it but it's the principle of the thing. It's another nail our confining coffin of country life. The wee rooster is in a clean nest under the heat lamp with water near the tip of his beak. He won't stand and won't drink after a couple hours resting. I have little hope for the poor thing. Even if he was destined at a later date to become dinner, he still shouldn't have to suffer being mangled by a beast twenty times it's size. He should have had another half a year at least and gone out with a quick humane death. I'm seeing what happens in the next few hours. It breaks my heart but we may have to put him down.

Now we have to invest hundreds into fencing for the chickens now that the dogs know where the fast food drive thru is unless we're ready to accept more chicken losses.  


  1. I would have the neighbor pay for the chicken. If you see the dogs out again, call animal control. Or, in my area, you have the right to defend your property against loose dogs.

    I hope the rooster is able to pull through.

  2. You have the right to defend your animals from dogs. Do you have a gun? Living in the country isn't all roses and hearts. There are harsh realities of it, and loss of your animals to predators (dogs included) is only one aspect. We have a hole in our bedroom screen the size of a .22 bullet because there was a dog INSIDE my fenced yard trying to get at my chickens.............the dog is no longer a problem. Tell the neighbor that you won't lose another animal to his dog. If the dog is on your property it will be shot. If you aren't sure of your rights, call the county patrol and ask, then tell them what happened and what you intend to do.

  3. We don't own a gun. Perhaps having a shotgun with some blanks or rubber slugs would have done the trick.

  4. Florida has "castle doctrine" laws that allow you to use deadly force to protect yourself from bodily harm on your own property. I'm not sure how or if this applies to property or animals. It's even more aggravating since the owner of the dogs is the one that, somewhat backhandedly, informed us about the restriction on owning goats.

    I'd hate to have to harm a dog (since it's the owner's fault, not his). Now we are considering putting up a fence to protect the chickens, which means expense and labor for us because someone can't keep their animals under control. We were told that the HOA prohibited goats because some had been a problem. Are they now going to ban dogs? I highly doubt it.

  5. He didn't make it :(
    Hopefully he didn't suffer too much.

    I know he was "just a chicken" as some might say, and didn't even have a name since he was destined to be dinner, but he was OUR chicken, our property, and food for our family. I hope he finds lots of hens and juicy worms in Chicken Valhalla.

  6. That's the thing you'll have to learn to accept. I love animals and especially dogs, but I will kill one or any other varmint to protect my animals. I know it isn't the dogs fault, he's just doing what dogs do, but that doesn't change the fact that you will lose animals to them. Remember that I said the dog we shot out our bedroom window was INSIDE our fenced yard... we have a fence to keep our dogs in and other animals out, this dog had jumped our 4' fence and was inside our yard. A fence to keep your chickens somewhat corralled is a good idea anyway. Even though our birds free range, we do have perimeter fencing to encourage them to stay on our property. Our dogs know to leave them alone but we did lose one to the neighbor kid's dog. He came to the house to apologize and I assured him it wasn't his fault. The chicken was off our property and therefore fair game. We have a chicken house in which they can be locked up at night. I have goats and a take no prisoners attitude to predators. Nothing is going to harass my critters on my watch! Good luck

  7. We may do the chicken fence regardless, but they do stay near their house and don't wander anywhere near the property line. If they stray a little too far, our dog will bark at them. All of them are locked in coops at night which are as predator-proof as we could make them (more worried about raccoons are snakes on that front).

    Besides the livestock, what about our dog or cats? The dog is pretty protective and might get injured if they got into a scuffle. I think other dogs would have a hard time catching the cats, but if they did, we and the kids would be devastated.

    It's just frustrating, especially given that we had to find a home for our two little harmless does.

  8. I can't edit a post? That should be 'raccoons and snakes'. A coon snake would be just too much :)

  9. Sorry you lost your rooster. Though I understand your position on principal. Allowing him to replace your chicken is better than allowing him pardon. Perhaps he will keep better care to have his dog leashed prior to opening the door.

  10. He said they dug under the fence. We currently own our first dog. How long does it take a pair of dogs to dig under a fence? Pretty quick?

  11. Dogs can dig under a fence within an hour, if that. When you put up a fence, consider putting a few lines of hot wire around it especially along the ground. That will help deter pests even more.

  12. Sorry to hear about your rooster. That sure is maddening! I agree about extra protection with your fencing. My husband dug a trench around our property and buried additional hog wire fencing so that it would deter animals from digging under.

  13. Sorry about the loss of the rooster and the trauma that mean people have caused you.
    Bury the fencing a good 12 inches and then cover it with gravel so it hurts and slows the predator down to dig it up. Without this added protection, one dog can dig under in less than 6 minutes.
    Your poultry wlll live a longer life with a LARGE outside pen/run that is secured/fenced AT THE BOTTOM AND AT THE TOP to prevent daytime predators from killing them.
    When you mow your lawn dump all the grass clippings in their outdoor run.
    Have the neighbor reimburse you for all dog damage.
    "Treble damages" = 3x the cost of the bird + feed/labor etc.
    Practice the "three S's"--Shoot, shovel and shutup.
    Shoot anything that threatens your livestock.
    Bury it.
    Dont talk about it.

  14. I like you Janis, I like you alot!