You have to wonder if it’s narcissism or stupidity in chickens that cause them to challenge animals with big teeth and 10 times their size .
Anyway, I actually set up this supervised chicken test in the images below because katy the big white dog failed an unplanned and unsupervised chicken test a couple of months ago when one happy just for a moment chicken escaped the chicken pen. I can sum up the results of that earlier test with two words – “poor chicken.” Even back then katy had already been taught that chickens are not simply fun flappy chew toys. However, dogs are a little like children when you’re trying to teach them what not to do. As soon as you have your back turned you’ll discover whether or not they have really been taught to avoid certain things.
So I’ve been working with katy to try to get her trained not to kill chickens. To begin with this is mostly done by scolding her if she acts like she’s going to eat the chicken. Most dogs are pretty smart and they quickly learn if you don’t approve of them doing something. And then at least while they know you’re around they’ll mostly try to behave. After she learns that part then the 2nd phase of training is to get her to follow the training when I’m not around or she thinks I’m not around. This is mostly through having her in close proximity to chickens while I’m close enough to hear the chicken scream if katy forgets her training.
So i’m glad to announce that katy passed her one day supervised test and no one is more happier than the test chicken. The chicken was being bullied by the other hens so I decided to separate her for a little while and let her participate in some exciting dog training.
Katy hasn’t graduated from chicken training yet so there will be more tests and test chickens but maybe she’ll continue to do well. Katy is in a large pen with another dog, a blue heeler we call sargent, and he’s been trained not to kill chickens for many years. But if you put him with an untrained dog that attacks a chicken, he’s not able to override his pack instinct to join in on the carnage. 😦