Cinco Deseos Ranch Livestock Guardian Dogs
Est. 2009 - Spanish Mastiffs - Pyrenean Mastiffs
Brenda M. Negri - Livestock Guardian Dog Consulting / LGD Training
Home of The Way of The Pack: Understanding and Living With Livestock Guardian Dogs
Check out my You Tube Channel. I'm slowly adding some videos that I've taken over the years of my LGD pack. I think you will enjoy them, and perhaps even be stunned at them. Yes, it is possible to have that many dogs peacefully being together as a family. And yes, my fearless 6 week old Spanish Mastiff pup Gwangi did boldly go right into my heifers. Enjoy...
Got large predators?
One of my many clients in California runs 7 LGDs that she bought from me over a period of several years, and is successfully keeping her commercial grazing 200+ head goat herd alive and safe, thanks to common sense, serious hands-on shepherding, and great dogs bred out of superior bloodlines who were brought up here in The Way of The Pack.
She remarks to me how many people in her area fail on a regular basis with LGDs for a variety of reasons. They're discussed at length, and much more, in my next article.
Her success story using LGDs in big predator country is coming out soon in the June issue of ACRES USA. The photos above are just a few samples of what her area game cameras are picking up. This is what my dogs are keeping her goats safe from. The "guardian burro" was killed by a mountain lion on another property.
One of the biggest "fails" with LGD owners is that they are not participating. They are not spending time with their livestock let alone their guardian dogs. They then experience losses - and have the audacity to wonder why.
On cattle ranches in wolf country, I continually hear ranchers whining about losses to wolves. Too many times it is because the ranchers are nowhere around. They don't ride through their herds. They don't keep tabs on what is going on. They don't monitor calving in open range. They run docile breeds such as Angus with inferior mothering instinct and no grit or guts to fight off wolves.
When I cowboyed for a living 30+ years ago, we didn't suffer losses to big predators as much as I hear happening today and no, it had nothing to do with the "reintroduction of wolves," either. It had more to do with us living out full time on the range with the herds. It also had to do with us running crossbred cattle with "ear" on them - Brahman, Beefmaster, Brafords, Brangus - cattle who'd meet a large predator face on and fight it or chase it off. Cattle with grit and backbone and superior mothering instinct.
I don't like what I see happening in today's ag world in America. I don't like cowboying or farming from Facebook. I am sick of listening to whining ranchers bitching about losses to wolves and not lifting a finger to do any proactive means to keep their cattle safe. There is a whole new generation getting into the ag scene with a chip on it's shoulder and a seemingly endless amount of self-entitlement and a frightening lazy streak, and a predator hating mind-set that is tragic and so unnecessary.
Get off of your smartphones and social media and get out there and be a hands-on, proactive shepherd and cowboy. Get back in touch with nature and livestock, and learn about your livestock and back up your guardian animals. It truly is as simple as that.