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Tangletown resident reports loose dogs killed her chickens

What do you think? (12 Comments) February 19, 2012 at 3:23PM

Alison asked us to share the news that three of her chickens were killed by two dogs on Friday (Feb. 17, 2012) at approximately 9 a.m.:

It would be a public service to use this as a cautionary tale for local dog and chicken owners. Whoever owns these dogs should know the result of letting them run. 

Above is a photo of the late, great Rhode Island Red, Ginger. She and her flockmate Cricket were killed Friday at about 9.00 a.m. in my backyard by two dogs. They injured a third chicken, Lacey, so severely that I had to kill her, and Rita is sitting in a cardboard box in my kitchen. We’ll see if she will manage to pull through.

The carnage in my backyard came about as the result of two dogs being allowed to run loose in the neighborhood, and I want my neighbors with dogs to know what can results from this practice, and to stop it. The dogs were apparently a small white terrier-like dog with spots, and a medium-sized brown dog, according to my neighbors who intervened to save the remaining chickens.

Our house, between the Keystone Church and Tangletown, is known as the Chicken House. I garden with my chickens in the front of the house, and they are visible in their enclosure at the side of the house. Lots of neighborhood children over the last 5 years have stopped by to say hello to the girls and feed them dandelion leaves and sunflower seeds. Having chickens has been a lovely way to meet and get to know people in the neighborhood, including the very conscientious dog walkers in the area.

I have never seen dogs running loose in the area before, but it only takes once. These were not strays — they are someone’s pets, and someone needs to know the result of letting their dogs run. The dogs squeezed through a small opening in the back fence that my neighbors carefully built around a giant cherry tree. Dogs do what it is their nature to do, which is why people need to be responsible dog owners. In the interest of neighborhood peace and civility, please DO NOT let your dogs run.

12 Responses to “Tangletown resident reports loose dogs killed her chickens”

  1. I am sorry to hear about the loss of the chickens. Growing up my friend raised chickens and my husband had a pet chicken. I know people grow close to their chickens and it is a sad day when pet chickens are brutally killed by loose dogs.

  2. Aeadam says:

    This is a sad story indeed.  Not only that, but it is illegal to let dogs run loose.  I would encourage the chicken owner to contact animal control to let them know the situation. 

  3. Karen Sandy says:

    I am sorry to hear about your chickens. My cat was killed by a dog a few years back and I still am sad to think of it.

  4. Fishmailbox says:

    I saw two dogs that matched this description earlier this week on 51st and Meridian.  They treed my neighbor’s cat and then took off east on 51st.  Fortunately loose dogs are a rarity around here, but they can cause problems.  I’d like to get to know their owner some time soon…

  5. I must pass on some condolences to Alison.

    I too am a Tangletown chicken owner with a home known in the neighborhood as the Chicken House and a flock of Rhode Island Reds who are much beloved by families who bring them dandelion greens and snails. Today I found a note in my mailbox offering condolences on “what happened to my chickens,” which I found very confusing because my chickens are just fine — if angry at the rain and mud of winter in Seattle.
    So, Alison, you have both my condolences as a fellow chicken shepherd, and the  condolences of your neighbors. Also, if you need a foster flock for Rita until you get her some sisters, my backyard has room for one more and my ladies always adjust their pecking order with a minimum of squabble.

  6. bushwood says:

    I saw 2 dogs matching this description on Saturday.  They were also off-leash.  As a dog owner who always keeps my dogs on leash, I find it extremely selfish and irresponsible to let your dog off-leash unless at an off-leash park.   I am sorry that their selfishness led to the loss of your sweet chickens.  

  7. Robbie Booth says:

    As a dog owner of a rambunctious Great Pyrenees puppy I would freak out if he EVER got loose in the neighborhood. On top of the reasons mentioned here, it is incredibly dangerous to the dogs to be allowed to roam free. In fact my initial thought was that somehow they must have escaped from their yard. I’m sorry about the chickens, we really want to get some too, so that our infant son gets to see “where eggs come from” :)

  8. Alison says:

    Thanks for these kind remarks, including the second-hand condolences! How very sweet.  I also appreciate the offer of a foster-home.  I think that my wounded girl is going to pull through, so for now I have two remaining biddies to keep each other company.

  9. guest says:

    The owner of those dogs live in a blue, mid-80′s house to the west of the intersection of 57th and 1st Ave. She lets them run all over the neighborhood. I don’t know if this is a criminal act, but there you go. 

    • Alison says:

      Thanks for the tip.  I will investigate.

    • observer says:

      These little dogs you mention are my neighbors’ and they are two cavalier king charles spaniels. They are too small and too nonaggressive and too doggone dopey to do anything like kill chickens or cats. I have seen a neighborhood cat stare one down and it was the dog that ran off. They also have not been off leash in ages, most likely months. I think whoever posted this needs to be careful of what he or she is saying. 

  10. Know the feeling says:

    Sorry to hear about your loss.  I just lost 16 birds.  I was raising some meat birds in a movable pen.  Everything has been ok, and then this morning they are all gone.  My neighbors across the street have 3-4 dogs, that roam the neighborhood, which is allowed by our state laws.  Lately I haven’t seen them, until today when I went to pick up the dead scattered in the yard, these dogs came after me.  

    Since you have witnesses, you can go after the dog owners for your losses.  All I have is a bunch of dogs which chased me away from my dead chickens, not much for proof it was them.  Hope your neighbor is better than mine.  I’ve had problems, even caught his dogs killing my chickens before.  Still doesn’t make him pen up his dogs, and I’m not the only chicken/rabbit in the neighborhood suffering from his dogs.