A well-trained, fed, and cared-for LGD makes all the difference. When carefully thought out training and wellness plans are used, these dogs will do amazing work protecting livestock.
We advocate for proven, humane management practices that improve the well-being of the dog. And experts agree. Research from Texas A&M and the American Sheep Industry Association recommends microchipping, vaccinations and dewormers, spay/neuter, routine, and emergency medical care, and proven socialization and bonding.
When these recommendations are not put into practice, this leaves adult LGDs and litters vulnerable to neglect or becoming lost. Even worse, it can result in a feral dog that is culled or an entire litter being left behind.
An unhealthy LGD can be mistaken as a stray and when not fitted with identification, the LGD may be impounded to a shelter. Most shelters and rescues struggle with finding the resources necessary to rehab and rehome feral livestock guardian dogs and the outcome is often detrimental.
Microchipping/collar and sterilization for dogs used on open range would ensure that no unwanted litters are born and no adults would be left behind. Sterilization should be used for population management rather than culling, which is considered inhumane.
Proven bonding and socialization practices decrease roaming while increasing livestock protection. Ensuring that the LGD can be recalled, leashed, and handled will eliminate feral LGDs that are often culled.
Providing high-quality nutrition, vaccinations, parasite control, and medical care greatly improves the well-being of the dogs and minimizes instances of neglect.
It is our focus to inspire LGD owners on the benefits of management methods such as basic health care, sterilization, proven socialization and bonding methods, and GPS collars. Our goal is to inspire the use of livestock guardian dogs as they were originally intended - as partners!
It is our goal to help establish proven, humane accepted animal husbandry practices and encourage support for them.
We'll continue to encourage and support sheepherder training, livestock guardian dog certification programs, and public land signage, all of which are encouraged by ASI and BLM.
LGDs are considered livestock by many state governments. Without any basic protections or guidelines, some LGDs live less than ideal lives. As with Police K9's, service dogs, and SAR dogs, we believe that working dogs deserve care that parallels the incredible service they provide.