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We're buying a little farmhouse and plan on getting a good old farm dog. Eventually we hope to have chickens and goats and I want a dog that will protect and watch out for the animals and my children. We hope to get a puppy this fall but not getting livestock until next spring. Wil he be too old to learn how to get along with them?
I would love to get a rescue puppy but I also want a breed that will work well in the country. We plan on keeping him in the house while he's a puppy but eventually would like to keep him in one of the outbuildings with proper heating and shelter and food and water. We live in Minnesota so he definitely needs to be a cold weather hearty dog.

Any advice on breed?
Where to get him?
How/when to introduce him to animals?
Where to keep him outside?


Thank you for your help
 

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hillbilly farmgirl
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Where are you located?

I have one I would like to give away, our fencing isnt good enough for her. She is good wth the livestock and loves babies/kids but she will run if given the opportunity. She currently lives outside already. Her mom was our now passed away border collie cross, and dad was who knows what (I suspect a hound or cross). Beautiful sweet dog, just a runner. 45-50 lbs or so.
Late 2015 model doggie
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Where are you located?

I have one I would like to give away, our fencing isnt good enough for her. She is good wth the livestock and loves babies/kids but she will run if given the opportunity. She currently lives outside already. Her mom was our now passed away border collie cross, and dad was who knows what (I suspect a hound or cross). Beautiful sweet dog, just a runner. 45-50 lbs or so.
Late 2015 model doggie
Southeast Minnesota near Rochester. Where are you?
 

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Whether or not you have a good ol farm dog or a monstrosity would depend on training and what you expect from the dog.

Do you want a dog that will just bark when it sees something it doesn't recognize? Just go to the pound and get a nice dog that's willing to bark. Even a toy breed could do that. My sister has a chinese crested that does that.
Do you want a dog big enough to intimidate other humans, but loves your family? Labs are a great choice, but probably won't actually do anything but bark at strangers and are more likely to run than confront them. Pits can be as well, they're great with kids, protective of children but you would have to pick carefully to get one that's also livestock safe. Still, my sister owns a pit mix that loves everyone and doesn't even touch her cats or my chickens and rabbits. Rescues are overwhelmed with pits and pit mixes so you really can have the cream of the crop by picking a pit and you can be extremely choosy. There's lots of family guard dogs. Rotties and german shepherds are pretty great too.
Do you expect the dog to keep the livestock safe overnight or while you are away? You need a real honest to goodness livestock guardian dog for that. Mixes will probably not suffice. They will not live well as an indoor/outdoor dog for the kids. They will be focused on protecting their flock.

No matter what you get, training is key and supervision is important. No dog is inherently 100% safe around kids, no dog will do what you want without a stable household, clear boundaries, and consistent training.
 

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hillbilly farmgirl
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Southeast Minnesota near Rochester. Where are you?
California.

As to the above, this is a matter of opinion but I have had BAD experience with pitbulls on the farm.

Thwy are mentally unstable, just snap one day and decide to eat their owners, or kids. I have lost dozens of chickens to a neighbor's $#!tbull....we don't call em that for nothing either, boy howdy!
 

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They get a bad rap, but they're good dogs. I am sorry you had a bad experience. But they're not gonna be worse than any other terrier breed. Science backs this up. They even have a very large temperament test sample size;
https://atts.org/breed-statistics/statistics-page1/
http://dogtime.com/dog-health/general/1220-american-pit-bull-terrier-temperament-dog-bites (summation of the above data with videos showing how the testing works).

They're good dogs, Brent. :)

But really, I can't emphasize training enough. Training will make or break a dog more than any genetic temperament.
 

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IMG_2982.jpg
California.

As to the above, this is a matter of opinion but I have had BAD experience with pitbulls on the farm.

I agree with you Shannon. Ive known two raised by excellent owners with consistent training. One greeted her returning owner covered in blood and gore, because in the owners absence she torn apart the other dog she'd been raised from puppyhood with (no history of fighting between the two...it came out of the blue) and the other belonged to our dressage trainer who was the sweetest, most lovable goofball until she (with tail wagging) lunged snarling and aggressively at two little boys walking by us while I had her on a leash. They did nothing aggressive and hadn't paid any attention to the pit. She ended up mauling another dog at a park.
as a matter of statistics as well, pit bulls are not good with children.
The nanny dog myth has been debunked and even pit bull advocacy groups admit this. From BadRap's Facebook page. Can't save the link on my iPad
IMG_2982.jpg
 

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They get a bad rap, but they're good dogs. I am sorry you had a bad experience. But they're not gonna be worse than any other terrier breed. Science backs this up. They even have a very large temperament test sample size;
https://atts.org/breed-statistics/statistics-page1/
http://dogtime.com/dog-health/general/1220-american-pit-bull-terrier-temperament-dog-bites (summation of the above data with videos showing how the testing works).

They're good dogs, Brent. :)

But really, I can't emphasize training enough. Training will make or break a dog more than any genetic temperament.

I'm sorry but that's BS. I have Great Pyrenees to guard my livestock and border collies to herd. Because they were bred selectively over generations and hundreds of years for specific traits. That is why we have breeds. For specific purposes. Pits were bred selectively for an entirely different purpose.

As far as the test:
http://thetruthaboutpitbulls.blogspot.com/2010/08/there-are-three-kinds-of-lies-lies.html
 

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Discussion Starter #10
After doing a little reading I'm thinking about a German shepherd, a Norwegian elkhound, a burnese mountain dog, or Leonberger.

We live in Minnesota and winters can be brutal and a cold weather hearty dog is very important to me. Of course we'll make sure he has appropriate shelter but still I would hate to have a cold dog. I don't mind bringing the dog in the house if needed but I rather have an outside dog. I don't think I want a barker but a dog that will watch out for the kids and livestock. Just overall be a good family dog and over the property. Yes we plan on training very well which is why we rather get a puppy that we can socialize with our family and our farm right away.
 

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Lisa; ???? Not heard of this. Can you give citation to the pitbull advocacy group that says this?
The ASPCA, pets.WebMD, best friends, national canine research council ect. all endorse pitbulls as good family dogs.
https://www.nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/public-policy/breed-specific-legislation-faq
http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/features/pit-bulls-safety
https://www.aspca.org/about-us/aspca-policy-and-position-statements/position-statement-pit-bulls
http://bestfriends.org/resources/pitbulls-everything-you-need-know
There's also these great studies about it;
https://www.nationalcanineresearchc...ccur-most-dog-bite-related-fatalities-2015pdf
https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/L...of-Breed-in-Dog-Bite-Risk-and-Prevention.aspx

From the American Veterinary Medical Association;
"Owners of pit bull-type dogs deal with a strong breed stigma,44 however controlled studies have not identified this breed group as disproportionately dangerous."
Admittedly, the ATT is far from perfect. (Of course, the link you provided is wildly biased and sensationalist, an opinion blog not a study.) But I can't think of a higher scientific council to refer to for dogs than the AVMA. :p I thought you respected scientific literature?

Op; A german shepherd would probably serve you very well. Your weather concerns are legitimate, pits handle the cold well enough but can't stay out in it all the time. Be careful of your selection, many GSDs have bad hips/eyes/elbows due to inbreeding. Make your selection with care. :)
 

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I'm sorry but that's BS. I have Great Pyrenees to guard my livestock and border collies to herd. Because they were bred selectively over generations and hundreds of years for specific traits. That is why we have breeds. For specific purposes. Pits were bred selectively for an entirely different purpose.

As far as the test:
http://thetruthaboutpitbulls.blogspot.com/2010/08/there-are-three-kinds-of-lies-lies.html
Agree 100%....I love all dogs....but keep your pit chained up.
If you have to defend a pit in every conversation.....then the warning are real

Great pyrenees, shepherd, or collie are my suggestions....
But I would get the livestock first...that a pup...so it will adopt the live stock as his flock or herd...
 

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Hahahaha, that's the funniest thing I mighta ever heard!
When I think about how desperately some people try to defend some big positions like politics and faith and stuff. Super publicly. Like on the news all the time desperately trying to defend things.
It gives me a chuckle. I wonder, what do you get defensive about? :)
 

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Lisa; ???? Not heard of this. Can you give citation to the pitbull advocacy group that says this?
The ASPCA, pets.WebMD, best friends, national canine research council ect. all endorse pitbulls as good family dogs.
https://www.nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/public-policy/breed-specific-legislation-faq
http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/features/pit-bulls-safety
https://www.aspca.org/about-us/aspca-policy-and-position-statements/position-statement-pit-bulls
http://bestfriends.org/resources/pitbulls-everything-you-need-know
There's also these great studies about it;
https://www.nationalcanineresearchc...ccur-most-dog-bite-related-fatalities-2015pdf
https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/L...of-Breed-in-Dog-Bite-Risk-and-Prevention.aspx

From the American Veterinary Medical Association;
"Owners of pit bull-type dogs deal with a strong breed stigma,44 however controlled studies have not identified this breed group as disproportionately dangerous."
Admittedly, the ATT is far from perfect. But I can't think of a higher scientific council to refer to for dogs than the AVMA. :p I thought you respected scientific literature?

Op; A german shepherd would probably serve you very well. Your weather concerns are legitimate, pits handle the cold well enough but can't stay out in it all the time. Be careful of your selection, many GSDs have bad hips/eyes/elbows due to inbreeding. Make your selection with care. :)
Are
Lisa; ???? Not heard of this. Can you give citation to the pitbull advocacy group that says this?
The ASPCA, pets.WebMD, best friends, national canine research council ect. all endorse pitbulls as good family dogs.
https://www.nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/public-policy/breed-specific-legislation-faq
http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/features/pit-bulls-safety
https://www.aspca.org/about-us/aspca-policy-and-position-statements/position-statement-pit-bulls
http://bestfriends.org/resources/pitbulls-everything-you-need-know
There's also these great studies about it;
https://www.nationalcanineresearchc...ccur-most-dog-bite-related-fatalities-2015pdf
https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/L...of-Breed-in-Dog-Bite-Risk-and-Prevention.aspx

From the American Veterinary Medical Association;
"Owners of pit bull-type dogs deal with a strong breed stigma,44 however controlled studies have not identified this breed group as disproportionately dangerous."
Admittedly, the ATT is far from perfect. (Of course, the link you provided is wildly biased and sensationalist, an opinion blog not a study.) But I can't think of a higher scientific council to refer to for dogs than the AVMA. :p I thought you respected scientific literature?

Op; A german shepherd would probably serve you very well. Your weather concerns are legitimate, pits handle the cold well enough but can't stay out in it all the time. Be careful of your selection, many GSDs have bad hips/eyes/elbows due to inbreeding. Make your selection with care. :)

I stopped with your first source since it's a pit advocacy group.

As far as I'm concerned, statistics don't lie. Pit breeds account for the most fatal attacks and brutal maulings. Like the one a couple of weeks ago where a pit jumped into a woman's mini van and viciously mauled two young children in their car seats. http://www.pennlive.com/news/2017/06/fundraising_campaign_launched.html

Or the ten year old in Detroit the week before who had her arm torn off by a pit http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4615928/Ten-year-old-girl-arm-severed-pit-bull-Detroit.html

And right before that a 90 year old who was disemboweled and killed by the pit her daughter had adopted. http://nbc4i.com/2017/06/02/90-year-old-woman-dies-after-pet-pit-bull-vicious-attack-in-virginia/

You want to believe unicorns and rainbows pushed by thugs and pie in the sky "dog lovers" you go for it.

I'll believe statistics. http://www.dogsbite.org/
 

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Whether or not you have a good ol farm dog or a monstrosity would depend on training and what you expect from the dog.

Do you want a dog that will just bark when it sees something it doesn't recognize? Just go to the pound and get a nice dog that's willing to bark. Even a toy breed could do that. My sister has a chinese crested that does that.
Do you want a dog big enough to intimidate other humans, but loves your family? Labs are a great choice, but probably won't actually do anything but bark at strangers and are more likely to run than confront them. Pits can be as well, they're great with kids, protective of children but you would have to pick carefully to get one that's also livestock safe. Still, my sister owns a pit mix that loves everyone and doesn't even touch her cats or my chickens and rabbits. Rescues are overwhelmed with pits and pit mixes so you really can have the cream of the crop by picking a pit and you can be extremely choosy. There's lots of family guard dogs. Rotties and german shepherds are pretty great too.
Do you expect the dog to keep the livestock safe overnight or while you are away? You need a real honest to goodness livestock guardian dog for that. Mixes will probably not suffice. They will not live well as an indoor/outdoor dog for the kids. They will be focused on protecting their flock.

No matter what you get, training is key and supervision is important. No dog is inherently 100% safe around kids, no dog will do what you want without a stable household, clear boundaries, and consistent training.
They get a bad rap, but they're good dogs. I am sorry you had a bad experience. But they're not gonna be worse than any other terrier breed. Science backs this up. They even have a very large temperament test sample size;
https://atts.org/breed-statistics/statistics-page1/
http://dogtime.com/dog-health/general/1220-american-pit-bull-terrier-temperament-dog-bites (summation of the above data with videos showing how the testing works).

They're good dogs, Brent. :)

But really, I can't emphasize training enough. Training will make or break a dog more than any genetic temperament.
Lisa; ???? Not heard of this. Can you give citation to the pitbull advocacy group that says this?
The ASPCA, pets.WebMD, best friends, national canine research council ect. all endorse pitbulls as good family dogs.
https://www.nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/public-policy/breed-specific-legislation-faq
http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/features/pit-bulls-safety
https://www.aspca.org/about-us/aspca-policy-and-position-statements/position-statement-pit-bulls
http://bestfriends.org/resources/pitbulls-everything-you-need-know
There's also these great studies about it;
https://www.nationalcanineresearchc...ccur-most-dog-bite-related-fatalities-2015pdf
https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/L...of-Breed-in-Dog-Bite-Risk-and-Prevention.aspx

From the American Veterinary Medical Association;
"Owners of pit bull-type dogs deal with a strong breed stigma,44 however controlled studies have not identified this breed group as disproportionately dangerous."
Admittedly, the ATT is far from perfect. (Of course, the link you provided is wildly biased and sensationalist, an opinion blog not a study.) But I can't think of a higher scientific council to refer to for dogs than the AVMA. :p I thought you respected scientific literature?

Op; A german shepherd would probably serve you very well. Your weather concerns are legitimate, pits handle the cold well enough but can't stay out in it all the time. Be careful of your selection, many GSDs have bad hips/eyes/elbows due to inbreeding. Make your selection with care. :)
Hahahaha, that's the funniest thing I mighta ever heard!
When I think about how desperately some people try to defend some big positions like politics and faith and stuff. Super publicly. Like on the news all the time desperately trying to defend things.
It gives me a chuckle. I wonder, what do you get defensive about? :)
Well....Lets review....
4 posts out of 13 to defend pits?.....the 1/3 of the posts
0 posts defending any other breed .

Glad you found my post amusing...and made you day....
But you have not convinced any one....

IMO.....
Happy 4th of July.
 

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That's cool. You can ignore my whole post. I'll just keep listening to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
You keep thinking that a statistic that lumps 4 breeds of dogs and countless mixed breeds together into one statistic without any concern for husbandry is accurate.
Then we'll both be happy. You are happy making sure your every post is an ad hominem attack on other people, right? I wouldn't want you to feel dissatisfied with that.

Hunter you can't think of a single thing you support in life that is constantly being defended by it's supporters in every single conversation? Not a one? Not a SINGLE thing? Not, like, even thing related to the country or peoples rights to behave certain ways or have certain things or anything? Not a ONE?
I don't really care about convincing you about dogs. You can believe whatever. But it's really funny to think that the standard for whether or not something is truthful is how much they defend themselves against it.
You appear to be defending yourself against being convinced about pitts a lot. Your every post has been about it here. 0 posts about how you're not a fan of other breeds. I guess by your standards you really love pits! Hahaha! Absurd.
 

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Like I said...Have a Happy 4th of July......
I sure I made my point....
 

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That's cool. You can ignore my whole post. I'll just keep listening to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
You keep thinking that a statistic that lumps 4 breeds of dogs and countless mixed breeds together into one statistic without any concern for husbandry is accurate.
Then we'll both be happy. You are happy making sure your every post is an ad hominem attack on other people, right? I wouldn't want you to feel dissatisfied with that.

Hunter you can't think of a single thing you support in life that is constantly being defended by it's supporters in every single conversation? Not a one? Not a SINGLE thing? Not, like, even thing related to the country or peoples rights to behave certain ways or have certain things or anything? Not a ONE?
I don't really care about convincing you about dogs. You can believe whatever. But it's really funny to think that the standard for whether or not something is truthful is how much they defend themselves against it.
You appear to be defending yourself against being convinced about pitts a lot. Your every post has been about it here. 0 posts about how you're not a fan of other breeds. I guess by your standards you really love pits! Hahaha! Absurd.
http://www.dogsbite.org/pdf/analysis-avma-role-of-breed-in-dog-bite-risk-and-prevention.pdf
 
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