Aggression to Livestock

by Ronnie Hart
(Water Valley, Texas)

We've only had our dog about two months. She's a young dog less than two years old. We got her from our ranching neighbor and from the very start she was great with our small flock of hair sheep. She would lay amoung them and let the lambs climb all over her. She would even lick and clean the lambs mouths. All was great untill about two weeks ago.The first thing I noticed was our buck came in limping really bad from a front leg. The buck would even fall to the ground and have a hard time regaining its feet( he's better today). Now I'm having problems just calling the sheep in. They stand in a tight group far out with the dog laying between me and the sheep. They now act scared of her and I've got to scold the dog and make her leave the area before the sheep with come in to feed and water.We won't be able to live with this unless someone can help us out. What should and can I do with my new guard dog?
Thank you, from a west Texan new at this.

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Jul 21, 2022
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Aggression
by: Donna

There is no reason to scold her. It won’t change what is happening. Are you able to work with her as her owner?

This can happen with a poorly bred dog who has not been well-socialized with many different people, and animals. Things start out well, but as the mature, this behaviour can happen.

Do not punish her. This only escalates things. You’ll need to pen her until you get help. Start by joining the Canadian Livestock Guardian Dog fb page while awaiting a consult.

I would recommend consulting with a certified animal behaviourist to see if you can work with his behaviour.

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