The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Managing a stray dog

Australian shepherd"Looks like [the dog has] already found a good home." --- Errol

Mark and I did consider keeping the stray, even though he killed a chicken, requiring us to tie him up. He's very responsive, and I'm confident we could turn him into an asset to the farm just like Lucy is...but it would take a lot of work. We had to give Lucy about an hour of training per day for a month or two before she turned into the well-behaved guardian she is, and neither Mark nor I feel up to throwing that kind of concerted attention at a dog while we're waiting for our first goat-kidding experience.

So, instead, we called two local vets and the animal-control officer and put up a flier in the post office an an ad on craigslist...but no nibbles yet. In the meantime, I've been grumpy because a tied dog makes me sad, and his presence also means that our shy cat only came inside for two hours Monday night before fleeing back to a dog-free zone. I never realize how carefully managed our farm is until someone inserts a monkey wrench and our systems all get twisted askew.

Mark and I have learned one very important thing from this experience, though: no matter how well-behaved a dog seems, it should be treated as a chicken-killer until proven otherwise. The next nice stray who arrives will be tied up immediately to protect our flock.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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Poor guy, lots of folks get Border Collies and then can't keep them busy, that may be why he's out and about :( Hope you find his owners or a good home for him.
Comment by Nita Thu Jan 15 09:34:08 2015
I've seen your ad on Craigslist. You have it listed under "free", but you might get more responses if you post it under "pets".
Comment by Nayan Thu Jan 15 10:19:06 2015
If it isn't too much trouble to take him to your local vet or animal control office (or, if it's less trouble than keeping him tied at your farm) you could take him in to have him scanned for a microchip. If he has one it will pull up his owner's info and he can be returned and out of your hair.
Comment by Rae Thu Jan 15 10:31:27 2015

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