When I get a LGD, how do I train it?

Discussion in 'Goats' started by maryanne, Oct 28, 2006.

  1. maryanne

    maryanne Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    139
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    Location:
    NC
    clueless..here...I will put it with boer goats.what do I need to do..do I need 2 or just 1 great pryn.(thats the breed i am getting).I dont want it to be lonely , but I am not sure if they feel the need for "company",,,do they?
     
  2. KSALguy

    KSALguy Lost in the Wiregrass Supporter

    Messages:
    8,818
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2006
    Location:
    S.E.Alabama
    they need to bond to the goats first NOT to you or another Dog, you need to train it the basics like "NO" and "STOP" and "COME" but thats about it, you dont want to over trean a LGD, besides that its next to impossible to obediance train them sence they are an independent thinking animal, they think for them self and decide what THEY need to do to protect the herd. once you have one dog that is adapted to your farm and animals and is adult and working well then if you need a second for backup which is generally a good idea depending on what kind of preditor population you have, you can bring in another young dog to be trained by the older one.
     

  3. Ralph in N.E.Oh

    Ralph in N.E.Oh Humble Shepherd

    Messages:
    323
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio...60 minutes east of Cleveland
    I can tell you want NOT to do. We brought this fuzzy cute little pup home. I thought he would need to get aquainted with my Border Collies, so I left him with them for about 6 weeks.... to learn , no, down etc. I then put him in with the sheep... Its now 8 months later and I have a dog that does his own thing, will not stay in ANY fence, and picks up everything know to man and brings it to the lawn. He especially likes my wife's flower bed statuary, landscape lights, ears of corn, rocks etc. He is a wonderful easy going dog That I just plain screwed up! He is gentle but only comes when he feels like it. I am really ticked at myself for doing it all wrong. On another note, he spends most of the night patrolling the farm. He barks only when something is there. His is a great protector of our farm. He allows no fowl or birds on our ponds, (so maybe the herons won't eat my amur fish anymore?) He likes the sheep and goats he even sleeps with them often at night... but he has not bonded, and will not stay with them... I think go seee a dog that is really working, buy from a reputable breeder the price will be worth it and do exactly as the breeder tells you... I thought I knew, but this is a huge mistake! He is a loveable, almost mentally challenged, gentle giant, right up til a strage car or animal is in view...then he is a guard dog.. again talk to folks who walk the walk and have dogs with their sheep and are actually working... then do as they tell you. I had bad research, bad advice and a big kind heart... little guy suckered me right in now he is almost worthless...and my wife is not happy... we all know what that means!
     
  4. oberhaslikid

    oberhaslikid Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    1,521
    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Location:
    Ohio
    We did the same thing Ralph did.That cute little puppy cant stay in the barn.We let her live in the house the first 6 months WRONG thing to do.when we tried to put her in the barn with the goats she didnt want to stay. Played with the goats but wanted to be in the house. She bonded with us.Put them in the barn and leave them there.If you do your homework and buy from a breeder that raises them to work with livestock I think the training part will come natural.
     
  5. maryanne

    maryanne Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    139
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    Location:
    NC
    easy enough- sounding, us animal lovers are a mess..I will certainly follow the advice and put him or her out in the pasture with the boers.Is a male or female LGD better ??
     
  6. HappyFarmer

    HappyFarmer Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,012
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    Here's my hodgepodge of thoughts:

    Visit http://www.lgd.org/library.htm

    There are many articles there to assist you. Buy from a reputable breeder who can give you assistance when needed, and has working dogs. For a new lgd owner, I suggest 1 lgd at a time as they can be very independant & trying of new to lgd owners.

    A LGD guards the stock because they have bonded with the stock. It is ok for you to pet & make of the dog, however only do this while in the goat pen, and not for any great length of time. You do not want the pup to bond with you. Teach the pup to lead, sit, and the meaning of the word NO.

    It is best to put a pup with older does who are passive yet will not put up with playful antics of a pup. Many owners build a small pen within the goat enclosure for the pup. This set up keeps the pup safe while they get used to each other, also eliminates any roughousing with young stock. During the introductory period, (supervised, of course to protect the pup) the pup should submit (roll over on it's back) when a goat approaches. This shows the goats that he/she is not a threat & initiats the bonding process.

    Build a jump box, where to pup when released with the stock, can go to get away from the goats & eat undisturbed away from the goats. lgd's are sometimes food aggressive & will snap at a goat over food.

    Lgd's can take up to 2 years to mature. They go through "silly" phases where they forget basic training. LGD's have a tendency to roam. Good fencing is a must.

    May I suggest you also sign on to the "Y" group "workinglgds" or "goatsandlivestockdogs". There are many wonderful people there with much experience.

    Good luck
    HF
     
  7. copperpennykids

    copperpennykids Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    1,706
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2004
    Location:
    Idaho
    We have owned and raised and bred Great Pyrenees for 5 years and sold many dogs as working Livestock Guardian dogs.

    First, let me say that I concur with Happy Farmer. I would also like to add that
    1) Another reason to only get 1 Pyrenee at a time is that sometimes the puppies bond with each other (encourage each other to get into trouble).
    2) If you get a second dog, get the opposite sex animal, you will have few if any dominance issues.
    3) You CAN bond with your dog--we pet and love on our dogs in or out of the pen. It has not interfered with their ability to guard critters, humans, or property.
    4) Definitely purchase from a reputable breeder. Your initial outlay will probably be more, but breeding DOES make a difference. Temperament is all important in a Pyrenees, with soundness the next most important trait. You want a breeder who is keen on those two things, even if they can't advise on the practical ins and outs of LGD for livestock. Folks on the Forum can help you there, but they can't help you if your dog is a royal ditz. (breeding, honestly!)

    Finally, for Ralph in Ohio, your dog is not a total loss....First thing you want to do is run electric wire on the top and bottom of the pen that you want to keep him in. Pyrenees really respect that electric wire. (DO NOT EVER put a shock collar on a Pyrenees...sure recipe for ruining the temperament of your dog). Your dog IS guarding your property and critters. Most Pyrenees do their work at night (high predator time) and they are so intelligent that your dog knows:
    a) that all of the critters are all right and he would rather hang out with you
    B) that if the critters needed him he could get to the back of your pasture in 2.2 seconds.
    He is still young, so will act doofy at times (by the way, Pyrenees only come when they think they should...so keep little treats in your pocket, when he comes to you, give him a treat. After a half dozen times, only give treats every other time, but he won't risk missing out...) so be patient with him!

    Last, if you want your Pyr to guard critters as well as home, do not bring your Pyrenees in the house--they will focus on the home and family almost exclusively. You can switch them over (I know folks who have turned a house pet they got into an awesome LGD), but you will definitely need to keep them in the pen (see above) and make sure that they know what is important to you.
    We have a beautiful 4 year old Pyr female, Bonnee Bear, who came to us when she was 18 months, and had spent her life in large large dog pens, no critters, and she is the BEST LGD!! She never tries to leave home, guards the goats, cleans the kids, and disciplines the younger Pyrs. She is from great bloodlines and this is where I come back to ...Get thee to a good breeder first, and then go from there!
     
  8. Bearfootfarm

    Bearfootfarm Hello, hello....is there anybody in there.....? Supporter

    Messages:
    52,897
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Location:
    Eastern North Carolina
  9. Ralph in N.E.Oh

    Ralph in N.E.Oh Humble Shepherd

    Messages:
    323
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio...60 minutes east of Cleveland
    Thanks Copperpennykids, I agree that he is most definately guarding my farm. He patrols almost all night long. When he is guarding he is on the top of his game and very mature for a pup. He will probably work out because he is a likeable cuss. I just think it would have been better if I'd done a bit more studying and sought out a better breeder. There are many to choose from right here on the forum...dang it, I'm old enough to know better! He does not leave our farm except when in the woods. He doesn't know where the boundries end. I am almost done fencing our entire farm with woven wire. It will be easier to work on him then. I do have a hot wire running on top of the woven, but because the project is not done... the wire is not hot. Soon very soon, all may be much better. We have sheep and goats he gets along well with both as well as with the cows horses and even our chickens, I accidently shut him in the chicken house over night, he did eat a few eggs, but the chickens were unharmed and protected.I also think once the puppy stage is over things will be better too.