In a message dated 4/30/08 12:15:15 AM Eastern Daylight Time, 
[log in to unmask] writes:

> Date:    Tue, 29 Apr 2008 12:22:03 -0700
> From:    zoe rhine <[log in to unmask]>
> Subject: Introducing ES to chicks
> Does anyone have any hints on how best to introduce a
> ES to chicks or chickens?  We have a 1 1/2 year old
> ES, who was raised around chickens, but seems to have
> forgotten, and I started with baby chicks thinking
> that would be easier.  She appears ready to swallow
> them whole.
> Also, do ES have soft mouths like retrievers?  Ours
> was caught starting out the kitchen with a cooked
> lasagna noodle hanging from her mouth.  When told to
> drop it she did.  We were surprised to not find a mark
> on it.
> Thanks, Zoe

Hi Zoe,

Sit down with a chick in your hands and respond to her inappropriate interest 
as you would if she was trying to eat *your* baby. Praise for restraint and 
calm interest without snapping/gobbling attempts, reprimand any roughness or 

Watch for her eyeing them up thru the wire and come down on her hard *every* 
time she looks at them in a predatory way. There is a difference between calm 
interest and what Jim Wolf on the AWFA list refers to as " the lusty eye" (I 
love this term, it's the perfect description).

There is a lot of info in the AWFA list archives, the membership is primarily 
farmers so a lot of "concentrated" good advice available there for training 
dogs to live with/work livestock. Go to and click on "join 
our discussion list!" to join.

What's her pedigree? Some lines of ES have more guardian/nurturing/protective 
nature toward small, helpless creatures than others (depending on how/what 
they were selected to work). B&T ES selected to work hogs and rough cattle, IME, 
tend to be harder-mouthed and more aggressive workers than lines selected to 
milder stock.

-Tish Toren
The Blacksheep Homestead
Blacksheep English Shepherds 
Rock Stream, NY 
Member AWFA-
****we have puppies!!!*** e-mail us for more info :-)   </HTML>