Do Dogs & Chickens Mix?
If you have ever been to visit me then aside from seeing the various flocks of chickens I keep you will no doubt have met my faithful hound, Mick.
Mick has been around for almost 12 years now, in fact he’s knocking on a bit himself having arrived as a rescue dog when he was only 2 years old. His history was unknown having been found as a stray in Cardiff. The only thing that was known was his jaw had been broken in 3 places (and reset wrong), he’d been partial castrated and shot. His fear of sheep would suggest to me that he’s a failed sheep dog however it’s no surprise he was somewhat depressed when I met him at the Dogs Trust at Roden
When he arrived all those years ago he was ‘tested’ to see if he would settle around the chickens and ducks and much to my delight he paid them no attention what so ever.
Now if you have visited and met Mick then you too will know he pays no attention to the livestock at all but that doesn’t mean he tolerates them totally or that he’ll sit at the bottom of the pecking order as this photograph illustrates.
I was doing a spot of gardening and as usual that results in the assistance of the nearest flock of chickens and of course the presence of Mick. This is not normally an issue but it was high summer and having been for a walk earlier in the day Mick had grass seeds in his hair which attracted the attention of this particular Sussex pullet. Mick had allowed her to ‘pick over’ his coat and I thought a photo of this odd grooming activity might be interesting… she foolishly decided the grass seed on his chin needed pecking just as I focused the camera.
You will be pleased to know that the chicken was not injured and Mick looked at me afterwards with such an apologetic look that you had to forgive him for the response to a sharp peck on the chin. The two of them still encounter each other but a wide birth is given by both. Do dogs and chickens mix, yes, but even the most trusted of dogs can react, or the most confident of chickens come unstuck so be careful.