How to introduce a gaurd dog...

Discussion in 'Precious Protectors' started by Itchysmom, Apr 3, 2010.

  1. Itchysmom

    Itchysmom New Member

    Apr 2, 2010
    I don't know if this has been asked before, new here!

    I have a 2 year old GP, female. I originally got her to guard my horses, but this changed and she has been just a house dog for about a year. She is good around the horses, doesn't chase or bark at them at all.

    I will be moving on to our new property this summer and will have a doe and her buckling. I want my dog to protect them. She has never been around goats, just horses. She is gentle minded and loves to kiss my filly! What is the best way to introduce her to the goats and make her understand that they are her goats and she is to protect them? :shrug:
  2. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    im going to move this to the right area so that those who raise these animals can give you some pointers

  3. farmgirl42

    farmgirl42 New Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    Eastern Ohio
    I joined two email lists on Yahoo: workingLGDs and goatslivestockdogs . There are some great folks on there with tons of knowledge.

    My situation is that I recently obtained a 5yo GP x Maremma. She grew up with goats, so at least she knew what they were. But we moved her to our farm with a new herd of dairy goats - she had been raised with Boer - and it was still a big adjustment. We put her in a stall right next to the goat pen with "open" gates between so they could sniff each other and get used to each other, but she couldn't hurt them or mix with them unless I opened the gate. We did this separation for about a month, gradually increasing the time she was with the herd, and now she is able to be trusted with them 24/7.

    However, I will still separate her from the does in labor and new kids until I'm sure she is safe with kidding.

    Hope this helps a little bit...
  4. myfainters

    myfainters New Member

    Oct 29, 2009
    Lancaster, CA
    I agree with Erin, the dog needs to be in an introduction pen... the best option would be a pen in the middle of the goat area so that she can get used to the goats and interact with them through a fence while they adjust to each other. Do you intend on having your dog be a guardian for your goats or is it a housedog?

    Your goats will need protection mainly at night... so if your dog is a housedog I'd recommend a safe, fully enclosed, barn or shed to lock your goats up in at night.

    Also, know that if your dog considers you to be the object needing protection... you will have a HUGE adjustment period when you give your LGD/housedog this new task.... as it will feel that it is leaving YOU vulnerable by not being with you. There are some LGD breeds that naturally adjust easier to a change in species or multiple species protection.... but the GP is not normally one that takes to it as easily. (Not saying it can't be done.... it can it will just take persistance) :)
  5. Itchysmom

    Itchysmom New Member

    Apr 2, 2010
    Thank you for your replies!

    Yes, she is a house dog at the moment, but was born and spent most of her first year outside with the horses. She also like to be outside more than inside.

    I figured I would pen her next to the goats for awhile and keep an eye on her when she is actually with them in the beginning.