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Caught the Neighbor's Chicken
  • I looked for a thread but couldn't find one, so if I duplicate I apologize.

    Fen got out today and got one of the neighbor's chickens. We were 30 seconds behind him chasing him down, and yelling at him, but once he saw that chicken that was it. The chicken is alive, but ripped up. One of the neighbors was home (the wife thank God - the husband isn't as nice) and we talked to her. She has the chicken and is treating it.

    Two questions:

    1) Is there ANY way of training Fen to NOT chase chickens? I am assuming No because of the Shiba prey drive, but thought I would ask.

    2) Does anyone have any experience with this? Suggestions on what we should do for vet bills, or replacement if the chicken dies, or if the chicken lives what we could do to make amends with the neighbors????? I am open to any and all suggestions because we are both owners and our properties are next to each other so good will is a MUST.
  • re 1, a shock collar is probably the only way and probably not a good idea.

    re 2... you should pay the vet bills. Is it a pet chicken or a food chicken? If its a pet, its probably insulting to buy a new one. If its a food chicken, yes you should replace. Generally speaking, I think people are forgiving of mistakes if they believe you are apologetic and it was a mistake. I would call/text daily, bake a pie, and apologize and then guage their reaction.

    Cake and cookies are good replacements for pie.

    So are merengues and truffles.

    Maybe even a cheesecake.

  • Yes we apologized profusely and helped her with the chicken. She met Fen (he was in the car) and laughed because he is just a "little dog". I explained that he is always locked up or on leash, but he does sometimes get out, and that his breed has a strong prey drive. The neighbors have lots of chickens and they are egg chickens. We live way out in the wilderness, and there are bears, eagles, hawks, foxes, raccoons, bobcats and mountain lions all over this area, so we have (in the past) questioned the wisdom of having "free range" chickens out here, but in the end our dog was the naughty hunter so . . .

    Shock collar is out of the question - I hate those things.

    Well my husband does bake amazing cheesecakes . . . =D
  • Well my husband does bake amazing cheesecakes . . . =D


    in that case, Fen bit my finger =)

  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    FYI chasing and yelling.... Doesn't help!

    1. How did Fen get out? Definitely unlikely for you to train him not to chase chickens since it's his natural prey drive. But I think you should work on his recall/door manners.

    2. Offer to replace the chicken. Apologies a LOT, bake them a cheesecake.

    Definitely definitely make sure it doesn't happen again.
  • I knew this was here somewhere...
    Google works better than the actual forum search function.

    http://www.shibainuforum.org/forum/discussion/11846/chickens-and-shibas/p1

    Looks like most people have not been able to train them out of it.
  • Oh dear lord - they took the chicken to the vet for treatment of a broken foot and stitches. It's a $20 livestock hen for laying eggs! Does this mean we are going to be responsible for the hundreds or thousands they are spending at the vet??????
  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    Yes, that will probably be the case. But people get very attached to chickens. They are like pets to some people. I used to own ducks, I adored them. I also owned a sparrow and parrot for many years, bird people can be as passionate as dog people.

    Edit:
    I would talk to them and see what you can do. This could be a sensitive situation, and will greatly affect the future outcomes with your dog and their chickens, if there are any more issues.
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    Post edited by Kira_Kira at 2014-12-09 18:00:11
  • Oh absolutely - I mean, WE caught Fen savaging their chicken and went up to the house and told them, and she thanked us for being honest. I am having a difficult time seeing the chickens as pets. We live way out in the country. Out here all animals are working animals - Fen even does his job of getting rid of snakes and keeping the raccoons out of the garage =) So out here, in mountain lion, bear, bobcat, fox, raccoon country, having a chicken as a pet would be, well, kind of stupid.

    As a side note, we just put up temporary gates in the house to prevent Fen rushing the door (we have been working on this issue for a while now and HAD been making some progress) and we are building more permanent auto latching gates so this can't happen again. He has a huge backyard and plenty of room to run. He doesn't need to go out the front door LOL

    Fen is very upset with me though. He is moping around the house. I think he wanted to eat his chicken. I almost wish he had - it would be much cheaper to just replace the chicken.
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    Neither neighbor has a fence? These chickens are just running loose? What if they were hit by a car?

    Did you already discuss reimbursement? Honestly, I would just pay the market value for a new chicken. It's not a pet. Insurance companies don't pay for car repairs over the value of the car.

    For the safety of those chickens though, from any danger, they should be in an enclosure.
    Post edited by zandrame at 2014-12-09 19:23:36
  • I have friends who have had their pet/egg laying chickens killed by a neighbors dog. This happens a lot. Some take it ok, others.. not as well.

    I've found that having GOOD treats on you can change the outcome. If Moxy or Tang grab something I don't want them to have, I trade with them. Its worked so far. Maybe have a bag of treats on you at all times and let him know you have it.

    I would suggest paying for vet care, if its needed.. or asking if they would like you to buy them a replacement, should this one pass away. It sounds like the wife took this ok. So thats good. But yeah, maybe bake something nice and go have a coffee and chat with them.. OR invite them to your house to really meet Fen and chat about what happened.
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 4785
    Vet bills in the country especially for a chicken should be pretty minimal.

    I have chickens too and they are elderly and I'm going to keep them till they die naturally. I would have taken mine to the vet if there was some hope, and they do have little personalities. The Shibas will always want to eat them.
    "Common sense isn't so common"
    photo c5d87957-61b6-48af-a440-4187cbfc861b_zps88ccdf88.jpg
  • Well the chickens have an enclosure, but they are allowed to leave it at will, so yes, the chickens are just running all over the place. Fen absolutely has a fence . . . he just got out this morning (which was our fault - we were careless for a moment). Fen is never allowed to just run free. We have found mountain lion tracks on our property, and we have foxes, raccoons, bobcats, bears and other things that would probably love to fight with our Fen, so no, he is not allowed to just run around. We were 30 seconds behind him because he got out and just took off. Oh - and I know chasing him doesn't help (he thinks it's a game) and we didn't start actually CHASING until we saw him go for the chickens . . . then we started chasing and yelling.
  • Yeah, there's probably no hope for training Fen out of it, so it's just being vigilant now. And profuse apologies, and hoping the vet bill isn't super expensive.

    Good luck!
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8533
    zandrame said:

    Did you already discuss reimbursement? Honestly, I would just pay the market value for a new chicken. It's not a pet. Insurance companies don't pay for car repairs over the value of the car.



    Wow... No offense, but that is a terrible thing to say. A chicken is still a living creature, even if it is not a pet. A lot of people do not regard dogs as pets, so how would you feel if someone said that about your pup?

    Look at it this way, the OP's dog was let out of the house during daylight hours without restraints or owner control (even an accidental "escape" it is still the dog owner's fault). The dog left its property and trespassed on the neighbours property. The dog then chased and attacked an animal (even if it was "just" a chicken), causing injury.

    Most people who have chickens allow them to free range at some point during the day. This is normal and there is rarely harm done to the chickens from wildlife during daylight hours. The chickens will then coop themselves for safety at night.

    So yes, the OP should pay for the chicken's vet bills. Had this been a working dog or farm cat on the neighbour's property that Fen attacked, the obvious thing would be to pay for the bills. Same thing for a chicken.

    But, like Lindsay said, vet bills for chickens in a rural area should be pretty inexpensive.

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  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 4785
    And Chickens can really rebound from what appear to be horrible injuries, rather quickly. I mean, there was a rooster who lived for almost 2 YEARS after getting it's chopped off. OFF!

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_the_Headless_Chicken
    "Common sense isn't so common"
    photo c5d87957-61b6-48af-a440-4187cbfc861b_zps88ccdf88.jpg
  • I met someone whose chicken's foot fell off. It had been injured by the other chickens and the leg just....fell off. The chicken was still hopping around on one leg a couple of years later....
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    No offense taken, or intended on my part. The situation is obviously difficult, and there are many factors involved. Not just the dog was loose, the chickens were too. Predation is a risk the neighbor faces. And in some states it's legal to shoot dogs who trespass and harass livestock, and dogs are living creatures too.

    OP needs to discuss with their neighbor, and work together to prevent future incidents. But I don't think they should be guilted into a blank check. Replacing the bird, or paying for a bird the neighbor picks out, is a common suggestion. Or donating additional fencing.

    Veterinary care could be cheap, but it might not. One poster on a backyard chicken forum mentioned a $400 cast for his injured chicken (link).
  • chickens are considered "exotic" pets. So vet bills are usually pretty high for them, even in the country. :/
  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    @MoxyFruvous is correct... avian veterinary medicine is a highly paid commodity. A simple checkup for my Senegal Parrot started at $60, and they don't even get vaccinations or anything!

    They have very sensitive systems and can bleed to death very quickly. Although I am sure chickens are a bit more hardy than exotic birds.
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  • @Kira_kira They are a bit more hardy, but still they are birds, and birds in general are not super hardy. I've known a few who have lost chickens to dogs. Its not pretty. One chicken lived for a bit, but cost close to $1000 for vet care. It was a pet chicken, so I understand the want to save it at all costs.

  • Kobe1468Kobe1468
    Posts: 1587
    Just a quick question...was the chicken on its property, or out along the road? I ask as I often deal with the local Mennonites(my neighbours) whose chickens and turkeys are often seen out on the sides of the road, or even in the middle of the road. On my road it isn't as much of an issue for traffic, but there are some farms on the main road as well. In this case (sorry chickens) they are open game. Just as I must control Kobe, they need to control their livestock.

    If it was on it's property, I would just apologize, offer to help, and make sure Fen doesn't get loose again.
    "Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened."
  • The chickens were loose on the owner's property but right at the edge where it buffers up to the common lot - the property goes us, the common lot, then their property. There was a flock of coots up on the shore and THAT is what first got Fen's attention (he has been trying to get the wild coots / ducks / geese for months now). We live right on the edge of a lake, so Fen chases LOTS of wild fowl in the enclosed back yard.

    We haven't heard anything from them yet so I have no idea what the vet bills were. We have 2 vets in town: one is fantastic and has a great deal of integrity. When Fen broke a tooth on the 4th of July weekend rather than say "yeah bring him and your checkbook in right away", he said "as long as he is eating, and it's not swollen or bleeding he's fine". The other vet sees dollar signs when you walk in the door. I am praying they went to the first.

    We put up a gate at the front so Fen can't rush the door anymore. Other than the lake (which Fen HATES cold water) there is no way out of the back yard so he is completely enclosed. We did used to let him go from the main house to our house off leash, but that has stopped. Hopefully this will prevent any further incident.
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 4785
    Idk, all my chickens have been very hardy, and the Vets charged minimal fees for any care they needed.
    "Common sense isn't so common"
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  • TengaiTengai
    Posts: 275
    I have chickens. All of my adults will probably kill them if they could. They go nose to nose with them through the fence, the chickens are not afraid of them! If they only knew. My newest pup runs with the chickens in the yard, the chickens chase her! I still don't trust her though as she is now 4 1/2 month old and I'm sure anytime now her natural instinct will kick in!
  • Rc109aRc109a
    Posts: 10
    Please be careful about the dog. Depending where you live, the county may have laws or codes that consider dogs that kill livestock or poultry nuisance or dangerous. If the owners take it before the court, they can even have designated animals destroyed. I sat in court a few months ago when the animal control officer brought a case like this before the judge. The dog killed two chickens and was classified as a dangerous animal. The owners of the chickens wanted the dog put to sleep and the court ordered it. The dog was a beagle. I even live out in the country, so this could happen anywhere. Just saying be very careful and keep the safety precautions in place.
  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    That is a good point made by @Rc109a - my best friend owns 2 Labs and their neighbor has chickens. I've actually reconsidered letting them watch Kira when we go out of town because of the chickens, what if she killed one and the neighbors decided to try and have her destroyed because of it? I can't imagine...

    I am curious to know how the OP is and what became of the injured chicken situation?
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  • Update:

    So the chicken owners have been really awesome. They are not holding us responsible for vet bills because they were really impressed that we were honest and came and got them and told them that it had been our dog, and they said it was their choice to take the bird to the vet. We did offer to pay them, several times. They have met Fen and see that he is not a big vicious dog, and we told them about our new gates and precautions and they are very appreciative! We are putting together a nice gift of homemade goodies for them (and my husband is baking one of his amazing cheesecakes).

    Luckily, here in Oregon, we are a "free-range" state, so not only do they not consider domestic dogs to be predatory (unless they are a severe repeat nuisance), but if you have free-range chickens that wander off property, you cannot shoot a dog who attacks them. Of course it won't be an issue in the future because Fen just doesn't get out! =)
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    That's great news! I'm glad you guys worked things out and are establishing a good neighborly relationship for the future! :)

    I found this back when you first posted, and the timeframe and details are similar enough to be related. Is this possibly the chicken in question? (warning, pics of injured chicken)
    http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/941253/it-finally-happened-to-us-dog-attack-graphic-pic
  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    Wow, interesting find @zandrame - didn't peg you for a backyard chicken forum member ;)

    Great news about the neighbors being understanding about the attack.
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  • YES!!!! That's the chicken and the neighbors!!!! OMG the joys of the internet!!

    Except she told me the vet charged them $150 . . .LOL
  • Yeah Fen did that in less than 30 seconds - we were RIGHT behind him!!!! Then when I saw him I yelled "Leave it" and he stopped plucking the chicken and sat down looking at me like "Look! I caught you a chicken!"

    Glad the vet didn't charge them . . . now I don't feel quite so bad!
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    Lol @Kira_Kira, I just found it while searching how people generally handle these cases.
    Only exotics I have are bunnies :)
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    Wow, they told you the vet charged? Interesting... but yeah, don't feel so bad!
  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    LOL I admire your zealous thirst for knowledge @zandrame ;)

    That forum has a 2015 calendar very similar to ours. You have to see it, hilarious! There's a picture of a chicken on the beach. Not just a chicken that "happened" to be on the beach, they took their pet chicken with them to the beach!!!! :))
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  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    Hahaha, your curiosity surpasses mine though @Kira_Kira! I did not browse the site to that extent. :))

    That picture is great, I hope the chicken enjoyed it. My bunny would be terrified. But I wouldn't want to risk it either. I've seen somebody do that in Big Sur, his bunnies were running all over the place and on the highway, I was horrified.
  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    What kind of bunny do you have @zandrame ? Since I used to work at pet stores, I know a little about some breeds. I LOVE the Lionheads - they look wicked cool. But the Flemish Giants are so sweet.

    I think if I didn't have a Shiba, the exotic that I would own is an African Pygmy Hedgehog, they are so stinking cute! And maybe another parrot - my Senegal died in 2009 and although I miss birds, Kira is so much better.
    Cynthia, Proudly owned by Kira
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  • I had to share the link to the calendar, because, it's a calendar of hot chicks and... well I'm going to leave the second phrase alone.

    http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/932839/2015-byc-calendar-now-available
  • @lauratherose

    You tricked me with your use of chicks... so... not... appreciated.

  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    Hahahaha!!!! Good one :))
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  • @BanjoTheBetaDog
    :P ...mwuahahahaha!
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    @Kira_Kira, Chloe is a blue Mini Rex. She has very soft and dense fur, and a diva personality. She's almost 11, but still gets in to mischief like eating anything plastic she can reach and demanding attention at odd hours by rattling her cage. She'll prefers to be pet on her head, and will buzz around our ankles begging for treats.

    imageimage
  • JuniJuni
    Posts: 1268
    That calendar is just too much! I am tempted to order one...
  • Kira_KiraKira_Kira
    Posts: 2482
    Do it @Juni !!!! :))

    I wonder if the owners refuse to eat chicken? Wouldn't it be difficult to eat the meat of an animal that you love so much?

    I always have the weirdest questions...
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  • Kit_Keet_Kit_Keet_
    Posts: 206
    @Kira_Kira we used to have an African Pygmy Hedgehog before he died of old age! We also have two Chinchillas (both predate our dogs). One of our Chins will be 16 this year. After the Chins pass away, I have already put a ban on small animals in our house (for both children and adults) largely because my husband does an awful job of taking care of them and I get stuck with all of the work lol!

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