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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sometimes it's easy to forget that the big dogs lounging with the goats are not guards, but guardians intended to be non lethal predator control. I have run into a lot of farmers who have these dogs and like to say, "Darn worthless dog, it doesn't do anything but eat dog food and bark all night". It is actually fairly rare that an LGD kills a predator, their primary job is as a deterrent, it's easy to see why someone might think their LGDs are money burners, so thought I'd pass on this story.

I have never had a loss from predators. I got my first dogs when I heard coyotes getting too close for comfort. A couple weeks ago, one of my LGDs had to spend the night at the vet. I didn't want to pull any dogs from the range, and the only other LGD at the house was my old trainer, Mitzi. Well just about a year ago, after a long life of guarding goats and training pups, Mitzi retired herself (literally, she walked out of the goat pen, plopped down on the front porch, then walked on into the house and took up residence in front of the air conditioner). Well, I knew the goat pen near our house would be without a dog for a night, but I wasn't worried about it since it would be the first time in years, and I have never had a problem with predators.

At about three in the morning, Mitzi woke us up scratching frantically at the door. She went out, and asked to be put in the goat pen. This was odd, but I didn't think much about it until the next day when a neighbor told me that she thought she heard a coyote at our place. Another neighbor saw the coyote when she got home around two thirty. It had been hanging out about 20 feet from my goat pen! Those coyotes were smart enough to realize my pen was unguarded. Fortunatly, Mitzi roused herself from retirement for the night (she's back on the sofa again) or one of my goats may have become a midnight snack.
 

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Smart Girl! Good job Mitzi!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks! Mitzi is one in a million, even for an LGD. I told my husband that she didn't retire, she just promoted herself to upper management :) .
 

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Thanks for that little story SCRMG. Those Sars are smart enough to know when it is time to relax....unlike some of us humans! Yet Mitzi was still alert to what was going on outdoors. And that little story should prove to some that an LGD doesn't always have to attack in order to keep its charges from harm. Their presence is often enough! Golly such a dog is worth the best food an owner can give it!!!
 
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