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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Ok fellow TGS members, I think the time has come for me to be educated about LGD's. I know I would feel better if my girls had a protector with them, just in case I didn't hear the ruckus of a predator getting in with them. Although I've only had a problem once in 6 years, I'm not stupid enough to believe that I can escape predation of my girls long term. So, lets get down to it. Here is my situation and set-up. I have 108 goats divided between 5 pens. All gates are covered with cattle panels, all alley ways are packed and covered with gravel/rock. All exterior fences are either covered with cattle/hog panels, tin (windbreak) or share fencing with other pens that are occupied by horses. Most exterior fences have enough dirt to deter dogs from digging under them but, obviously, the same cannot be said for gates. All fences - exterior and interior - are pretty close to 5' high. Here are my questions:

1) How many LGD's would I need?
2) A number of my girls are actively hostile to dogs, so how would I go about introducing the LGD's.
3) I have read over and over again that LGD's need to be introduced to the herd as puppies in order for them for form the bond with the herd. Is that true? If so, again, how do I introduce a puppy to a herd that contains does who are actively hostile to dogs?
4) What is the best breed for a LGD?
5) How do you control the instinct to bring the dog in to the house, or make a pet of him/her?
6) How do you know where to find a good LGD?
7) What else do I need to know?

Thanks for your help and input. I appreciate it.
 

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Goatcrazy-

here is the lady I would WET MY PANTS to get a pair of pups from and she had a litter of cross pups (1/2 Pyreenean mastiffs) born in Sept so they are ready to go soon(if she has any left)--
Her cross pups are reasonable (I think like $300) and worth every penny she puts alot of time and exposure into her pups--

Great website and shes driving distance from you too--

http://www.lgdnevada.com/How_Many_LGD_s_to_Run_.html

It does help if you are a dog person.
Candy
 

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The only experience I have is with pups; one Anatolian & one a 1/4 Pyr.
Pup #1 stayed in adjacent pen a few months so goats could get used to his presence.
Then he decided it was time to be full time so he jumped fence to be with them.
Both dogs from working lines, whelped with goats.

Perimeter fence is now 7 ft but 4 between pens. They both jump it.

It wasnt difficult to not want to bring him in the house since we got him to do a job. They both receive little attention as far as loving on them goes. We let them decide when they want it & it's minimal.

They say at least two; one to stay with goats during a threat while the other goes after it. Or at least makes his presence known.
 

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If she has all those separate pens though, will she need one per pen? I know you are supposed to leave them in the fencing with them. I wondered about this too.
 

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I don't think one per pen is needed but maybe three dogs? It's hard to say but they will find access to get in to be with their goats.
It all depends; but if each pen is several acres??
GoatCrazy your perimeter sounds pretty secure & if you've had only one problem in the past an LGD or two or three certainly wont hurt.
I guess I'd be most concerned predator wise with new moms & kids.
But these dogs have a mind of their own.
Dog #2 was suppose to stay with bucks. But he decided his calling was protecting a doe in labor, then cleaning off those kids & staying particularly close to any bottle babies.
 

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We run about 100 (give or take) and we have two LGDs. Both are GPs and we love them. We got them when they were adults. One from an alpaca farm in Kansas and the other from a sheep farm in Oklahoma. We've also had them from the GP rescue ( though that is more of a gamble) the does aren't very nice to Max but he does wonderful with them and still guards them. We can't lock him in the barn with them but they keep their space. The bucks are good with Casper.

They are also so friendly ad good with the kids. We have about 40 4hers (ages 6-18) that come around and they are so gentle with them. I've had better luck with neutered males than I have with females. Our females all have roamed. You can treat them as pets but you have to remember why you brought them in...to protect. We don't give them biscuits and they do not come into the house. These guys love to be with their goats and would be a mess if they were separated from them. This is what they were bred for. You can still love on them and give them tummy rubs and groom them. But it's up to you to not bring them in and let them guard and only guard.
 

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I would say you would need 2 LGDs since it seems you don't have a huge predator problem. My goats didn't like dogs either so I just made it to were the pup could get away from the goats if they got too rough.

As far as what breed to get will depend on what you want. I chose a Akbash cause I have a very high predator risk an plus I don't want anything 4 legged or 2 legged in my pens. My Akbash is very aggressive to anything an anyone who is not accompanied by me. With that being said she is very submissive to me an the hubby an she thinks my kids hung the moon. I have also heard they stay with the stock better an don't roam as much as some other breeds but I also believe that each dog with in a breed will differ on the roaming part.
It was easy not to turn her into a pet cause I knew she was needed to protect my goats an if I turned her into a pet she wouldn't perform to her full potential.

There is nothing more amazing to me than to watch an LGD work. An after your goats an dog bond its awesome to watch how your goats respond to them when they see a potential threat. My LGD has a certain bark an when she uses it my goats become very alert an will watch her like a hawk. She will also run the goats into their holding pen an then stand at the gate waiting an watching if she cant see the threat, if she can see it she goes after it.
 

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I am new to LGD, only having them 2 1/2 years after my barn was set on fire.

I got a puppy to raise with the does and then ended up with her adult sister about a month later.

My goats hated the dogs and would try to kill my pup. I could only bring her in with the goats when I was with them to discipline them. I finally gave up and let the dogs be farm dogs. They guard all the property, including the house, and are awesome. Dogs, horses, chickens, cat and goats, they protect them all.

I still ahve 1 or 2 does who will try to hurt the dogs, but the dogs get away easy enough and I still discipline the does when they try to hurt my dogs. The younger does are fine with the dogs because they have known them all their lives.

I line my fencing with 2 strands of hot electric fence wire to keep the dogs in. It works very well.

My 2 Great Pyrs are pets as well as guardians. They spend time inside the house with me and time outside with the animals. The younger of the two is very, very protective of the older English Setter. In turn, the Setter has taught the Pyrs how to "catch" escaped chickens by slowly chasing them into a corner and standing there staring at them until I get there to catch them. Poor little hens end up surrounded by 3 pair of brown eyes staring her down!

I love the Pyrs, but they are loud. They bark at anything and everything. I only own 1 acre and live surrounded by neighbors, so it gets interesting sometimes. Fortuantely, my town has Livestock guardian dosg exempt from barking issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
OMG - someone set your barn on fire? :eek: Who would do such a thing?!?! I sure hope all of your animals were able to get out. I don't get people - I just don't get them.

Thank you for all the advice and experiences. I found out the other night that I can indeed hear the girls screaming - at least those in the north end pens! That eased my mind a bit. Thankfully it was just goat hijinxs rather than a predator. I have a dingbat yearling that likes to stick her head through the fence now and again, and she decided to do it at 1 in the morning. :rolleyes: I also have a yearling that knows a captive punching bag when she sees it, and was having a gay old time butting the dingbat in the butt. :help: Not sure what Charlotte brings away from that experience, but I guess. :GAAH: :wallbang: I damned near shot both of them where they stood!

mmiller we have a large assortment of predators - coyotes, bobcats, a mountain lion that wanders through on occasion, stray dogs, foxes, and badgers. We have just had 6 years of pretty mild winters so there has been enough game that I've only had a problem once. This year is supposed to be a normal winter with normal snowfall and below average temps, and I'm concerned.

I really appreciate all the advice and experiences. I will give it some thought, do some research, and figure out what I need to do. Thanks! :)
 

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I lost my herd of 14 dairy goats.....from 14 years of age down to newborns. 30+ years of selective breeding gone.

If you have heavy duty wildlife (like Mt Lions) you certainly need 2-4 LGD to tackle them.
 

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all I can say is get a dog, even just a regular old pound mutt, they bond to you and bark and do their job as a detterent....
Sure you can research LGDs til the cows come home (or not depending on the predator load)... but even a regular dog will do in a pinch, and the Shelters are full!!! one of the best dogs we had was a Pound pitt mix (she just hated other DOGs-- so people, animal and kid friendly)....
 

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all I can say is get a dog, even just a regular old pound mutt, they bond to you and bark and do their job as a detterent....
Sure you can research LGDs til the cows come home (or not depending on the predator load)... but even a regular dog will do in a pinch, and the Shelters are full!!! one of the best dogs we had was a Pound pitt mix (she just hated other DOGs-- so people, animal and kid friendly)....
For a guardian live-in herd dog, a pound dog just does not fit the bill. Many pound dogs are terribly clingy, and many have never been exposed to animals. I would be highly reluctant to leave a pound pup in with any of my animals. I'd rathe buy from a breeder who raises pups with animals from day one. Personal opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I lost my herd of 14 dairy goats.....from 14 years of age down to newborns. 30+ years of selective breeding gone.

If you have heavy duty wildlife (like Mt Lions) you certainly need 2-4 LGD to tackle them.
I am so sorry. Nobody should ever have to deal with that. I cannot imagine how devastating that must have been for you. :( Good on you not allowing it to destroy you and for having the strength and determination to rebuild! :applaud:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
all I can say is get a dog, even just a regular old pound mutt, they bond to you and bark and do their job as a detterent....
Sure you can research LGDs til the cows come home (or not depending on the predator load)... but even a regular dog will do in a pinch, and the Shelters are full!!! one of the best dogs we had was a Pound pitt mix (she just hated other DOGs-- so people, animal and kid friendly)....
Ummmm, no, I'm not about to trust my goats to a pound dog - sorry. I appreciate what you are saying, but it isn't happening. :) I happen to love Mountain Lions. I think they are the most graceful, majestic, beautiful creature that God ever created. So when Nat Geo Wild had an episode on about Mountain Lions, you better believe I watched it. I discovered that Mountain Lions can jump 2 stories straight up and that, pound for pound, they are the most lethal hunter of all the big cats. They can also stand down a wolf, and do so on a regular basis. In fact, another episode of Nat Geo Wild referred to the Mountain Lion as the wolf's nemesis. Does that sound like something your average pound dog can handle? I don't think so. I'm not sure even an LGD can handle them.
 

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all I can say is get a dog, even just a regular old pound mutt, they bond to you and bark and do their job as a detterent....
Sure you can research LGDs til the cows come home (or not depending on the predator load)... but even a regular dog will do in a pinch, and the Shelters are full!!! one of the best dogs we had was a Pound pitt mix (she just hated other DOGs-- so people, animal and kid friendly)....
The problem with this is, you just don't know what you are going to get. You are lucky that you got a wonderful dog that protects both you and your animals. But dogs are predators, pure and simple and I wouldn't trust just any of them with my goats. I don't trust the dogs we have now, they are kept separate from the goats. Less temptation that way. None of them have ever given me a reason to suspect they would do anything but I am not taking the chance. I will be honest I am leery of even LGDs I know they can be worth their weight in gold but I fear I would get the one rogue one. I certainly wouldn't trust a pound dog. Most pound dogs are from bad situations. I have adopted three over the recent last several years and while they were all good dogs they certainly weren't livestock dogs.
 

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The problem with this is, you just don't know what you are going to get. You are lucky that you got a wonderful dog that protects both you and your animals. But dogs are predators, pure and simple and I wouldn't trust just any of them with my goats. I don't trust the dogs we have now, they are kept separate from the goats. Less temptation that way. None of them have ever given me a reason to suspect they would do anything but I am not taking the chance. I will be honest I am leery of even LGDs I know they can be worth their weight in gold but I fear I would get the one rogue one. I certainly wouldn't trust a pound dog. Most pound dogs are from bad situations. I have adopted three over the recent last several years and while they were all good dogs they certainly weren't livestock dogs.
No no for sure, didnt mean to sound too over the top (was watching that super creepy Movie DreamHouse, and am thinking why dont people just get a good dog, it just solves so many problems, no one is going to be sneaking around in your shrubbery with a pittbull on patrol)--
And my little 45 lb pitty did interrupt some guy who jumped me at 10am one morning (back when we lived in the city- my first and last time jogging)-- there was a lot of barking and i ran and she followed, after she did what ever she did, and that was that.
No I just meant even if you just do a doggie moat (we looked at a property with a u shaped dog run that went all around their 1acre pasture and they had an old lab and a big sheepdog mix running in that, but they werent in the pasture with the animals- but it seemed to do the trick for them)-- or even had the dogs loose at night if your livestock are penned that might work....
Yeah we are working on getting our dogs goat - worthy now-- its the giant schnauzer I dont trust, she wont break into the pens, but I would like them to be able to graze out in the pasture without fear from her at this point....
 

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If you are still in need of an lgd, I have 1 male & 1 female left from the litter born - in the goat barn - 05/12/13. They have both been in with the goats fill time for over 2 months now & doing beautifully. AKC registered litter, vet checked & shots current. They both adore my 3 year old granddaughter too.

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Chivalrytimbers.net for more info if you are interested.
 

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