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For anyone who has lived (or still lives) in the countryside, the terms livestock guardian dog (LGD) and livestock herding dog (LHD) are probably familiar. Dogs of all shapes and sizes have enjoyed the special distinction of man’s best friend for thousands of years, but many modern pet owners don’t realize the true potential of their canine companions. The best livestock herding dogs and livestock guardian dogs come from specific breeds that have been bred and raised to perform certain tasks, as in the case of the Australian Koolie (a herding dog) breed or the Great Pyrenees (a guardian) breed from France. Livestock herding dogs are bred, raised and trained specifically to work with a farmer or shepherd. The border collie is famed for its intelligence and is a popular breed chosen by families around the world as a pet, border collies are known for their ability to learn many tricks and they excel in agility training and competitions. Australian shepherds, despite their name, originated in the western states of the US on ranches and farms, working alongside their owners to herd sheep and other livestock.
The German shepherd is famous for its use as a working dog alongside police and military detachments the world over, but this breed (like so many others) has its true roots in the rural countryside, working with sheep and other livestock alongside humans.
Lancashire Heelers, more commonly known simply as heelers, are an example of a rather specialized livestock herding breed.
Typically trained for use with sheep, cattle and goats, livestock herding dogs can also be used (with adequate training and supervision) to handle chickens, ducks, geese and other fowl and smaller animals as well as pigs and llamas. In addition to their skill and usefulness as working dogs, many LHD breeds also make loyal family pets, often with an innate, super-alert guarding instinct to boot. A good LGD will fight off predators that may prey on your livestock, but in many cases farmers with LGDs among their herd or flock find that they have very few issues with predators. This is because predators are known opportunists, so once they’ve identified that your LGD (another predator as opposed to a prey animal) has staked out its own patch of territory with your livestock, the predators will look for easier, unguarded prey elsewhere. Good livestock guardian dogs can also protect your stock from theft by strangers, though humans may prove more lethal to your dogs than predatory animals if they should target your stock. Anatolian shepherds are a resilient, hardy breed of guardian dogs that historically came from Anatolia, a region in central Turkey.
The kuvasz is a dedicated livestock guardian breed that descends from dogs kept for thousands of years to serve as guardians and protectors. Great Pyrenees are one of the breeds often referred to as the ‘white dogs’ of the livestock guardian group.
It is also important to remember that, in addition to the training that a good dogs needs to become a great herder or guardian (but particularly a herder), your flock of sheep, herd of goats or other livestock to be handled must also be trained to respond properly to the dog. Another important distinction between livestock herding breeds and livestock guarding breeds has to do with their ability to learn, and willingness to follow, commands and orders from their owner. By contrast, most livestock guarding breeds, especially those hailing from more ancient lineage, are reputed for their stubbornness, their independence, and their general sense of autonomy and even aloofness towards the human members of its pack. As opposed to being stupid or particularly disobedient, it must be understood that livestock guardian breeds are actually quite intelligent and have been specifically bred and raised for their capacity to work with livestock wile unattended. When it comes down to it, while there is some training provided by the owner (and the older dogs if you have older LGDs working your stock), most of what a good LGD does stems from instinct and good breeding.
The German shorthaired pointer was bred as a utility dog which means that the dog was meant to preform a verity of functions.
I have never owned a Terrier of any kind but they also have a reputation for guarding and killing rats; also for only barking when it is something important. I had Great Pyrenees when raising children, wonderful dogs, belling (barking) will always let you know where children are playing, great calm dogs, that provide intelligent discerning protection. I have a male Bullmastiff and a female pitbull and my believe their offspring is the best for family protection. Are you expecting the female Pitbull to deliver Bull Mastiff puppies' heads without veterinary help?
These dogs have the potential to take down large livestock and if trained properly can aide in hunting. If you are considering an all around survival, work and protection dog you should go on line and look them up. My female Catahoula is from a pet line, so she's less energetic than the male I had who was from a hunting line. I am curious are there breeders that are breeding dogs for people with a prepper type need?
Rabbit is not a mainstream source of meat these days, but it didn’t used to be that way. Meat rabbits offer numerous benefits to the right home so long as their needs are met (which isn’t hard to do). One huge benefit to raising rabbits for their meat is that they are such efficient producers. The traditional all-wire hutch that most meat rabbits are housed in have a floor space of only about 2.5 x 3 ft or so, and multiple enclosures can easily be stacked or lined up side-by-side along a wall. They don’t bray, cluck, crow or make much noise at all, other than an occasional quiet grunting.
Large and stocky, meat rabbit breeds are much heavier than your typical pet bunny or wild cottontail, usually weighing in at 10 pounds or more at maturity. Californian: Another favorite breed, the Californian is an all-American breed developed in the 1920s.
Flemish Cross: A cross-breed of the Flemish Giant and the New Zealand or Californian, Flemish Crosses are an extra-large breed with quality meat.
Traditionally, rabbits are kept in open-air hutches above the ground outdoors or in a small barn.
Some new owners may be surprised at the recommendation for wire flooring, but this type of enclosure is considered both very sanitary and humane for these animals.
If you choose to do this, however, be very careful – rabbits are very talented and driven diggers, and can make themselves a burrow in a surprisingly short amount of time. Most meat rabbits are fed a diet of commercial pellets, which are made up of alfalfa hay, oats, barley and other grains, as well as plenty of fresh timothy hay, which they love.
Meat rabbit enthusiasts all agree – these animals are not nearly as popular as they should be. New Zealands are now available in white, red, black, blue, broken red, broken black and broken blue for those who appreciate color variety.
As a young boy in the 70's, I was responsible for feeding and caring for (2) Albino "california white rabbits" as they were called.. I remember my Grad Mother told me the story of how Rabbits were a staple meat source during the Great Depression. One breed that was not mentioned is the Grant Chinchilla, nick named the MILLION DOLLAR Rabbit.
Actually, rabbit manure it not considered "hot manure" and can be tossed directly into the garden without ageing. All comments, messages, ideas, remarks, or other information that you send to us (other than information protected according to the law) become and remain our property. Instead of water wings and inner tubes, Dennis and Danielle McClung’s backyard pool in Mesa, Arizona, is filled with tomato plants, grape vines and wheat.
When the McClungs bought the foreclosed home in 2009, the backyard was a suburban wasteland with a cracked, concrete, in-ground pool. The McClungs has some farming and building experience — Dennis worked on a dairy farm and at Home Depot, and Danielle grew up on small farm in Ohio — and they’d been trying to become as self-sufficient as possible.
It’s hard enough to grow grass in the desert, much less greens, but the McClungs have made it work, using a tenth of the water traditional agriculture uses.
The McClungs get most of their food out of the pool (they’ll take their kids out for pizza occasionally) and they’re trying to share the wealth.


It starts with a pond — in their case, the deep end of the pool — which is full of tilapia and duckweed.
McClung is a perpetual tinkerer, and the Garden Pool has become something of a science experiment. Farming in Mesa’s arid climate has taught them lessons that transfer to other hot, dry climates. Dennis wants to turn their house and their farm into a research center focused on how they can help build farms in other desert regions and develop local food systems.
Superior taste and freshness is guaranteed on the go or cooked into everyday family dinners. Augason Farms Food Storage Soup Variety 6-Pack Everyday Size Cans includes 4 different varieties of soup. What these two terms refer to are the two types of working dogs one might expect to find on a typical working farm. Indeed, on working farms and in rural communities around the world, livestock herding and livestock guardian dogs, the quintessential working dogs, retain immense popularity to this day. As their names distinguish, LGDs and LHDs have distinctly different purposes when working with flock or herd animals.
As such, these breeds generally have an abundance of energy, are highly intelligent, and are really at their best when they have a job to do or a lot of mental stimulation.
All these traits stem from the fact that border collies have traditionally been the go-to shepherding dog in many localities for literally hundreds upon hundreds of years. Like most herding breeds, Australian shepherds are highly energetic, with eager-to-please temperaments, and they’ve become quite popular as family pets as well as in agility and training exercises. Capable herding dogs with great intelligence and capacity for obedience, German shepherds are one of the most popular breeds chosen as pets as well as show and competition dogs . Built long and short, heelers have traditionally been bred to maintain their low-to-ground stature for use in herding cattle. Unfortunately, because of their more predatory instincts, LHD aren’t as well suited to being left alone or otherwise unattended with their flock or herd, as they may slip up and eat their charges. With their more relaxed, patient temperaments, well-trained livestock guardian dogs can be left unattended amongst your sheep, cattle, goats or flock of fowl.
This makes LGDs ideal for use when you have free range cattle, goats, sheep or other free-roaming animals. Compared to some of the more relaxed, even ‘lazy’ livestock guardian breeds, Anatolian shepherds are agile and swift, capable of chasing down predators or intruders if they try to flee. As such, this breed is truly intended for life as a working dog, and they are really only happy when they have large areas to roam in and preferably a flock or herd to guard. With strong guardian instincts that have resulted from thousands of years of selective breeding and use with livestock, the kangal is a formidable guardian with a relaxed but attentive temperament. Another, similar breed in the ‘white dogs’ group is the Maremma sheepdog which is often used in tandem with a Great Pyrenees. Ornery sheep, aggressive rams, cattle and even pigs that have never been handled by a herding dog or been in the presence of a guardian dog will need to be acclimated to the new animal.
Traditional herding breeds are, by necessity of their job and the fact that they must respond swiftly and accurately to their master’s commands, generally extolled for their obedience and ability to learn new commands and tricks quickly.
Since these dogs have traditionally been left unattended with the stock, often for days at a time with little or no contact with their shepherds, it is important that they be able to make decisions on their own without relying on the orders of their master. He is from working stock and showing great aptitude while training to become my last Service dog. As long as man bred for fioctunn and ability in any given arena NO genetic diseases were passed on.
Named for the Lacy brothers who 120 years ago bred a Texas ranch dog for herding, security, and hunting ferrel hogs.
They are fantastic with children and naturally weary of strangers making these dogs some of the best protectors of family, farm and homes ! Highest bite force of any dog on earth and extremely quick to attack anything perceived as a threat to it's owner's or herd. For centuries, people have raised these animals on their farms for food, and for many thousands of years before that, hunted them.
Many owners claim that the most noise their rabbits make is the sound of hopping around in their wire enclosures.
It is a lean white meat that’s very rich in protein (about 20%), low in cholesterol and lower in fat than any of the mainstream meats, including beef, pork and chicken.
Not that these types of rabbits are a specific breed – not just any pet bunny breed is suitable for eating.
It features the weight and quality meat of the New Zealand, with a more quality pelt that you can sell after butchering. While sometimes made of wood, most of these enclosures are made of wire mesh, including a tighter wire mesh flooring, which allows their droppings to fall through. To add to these animals’ quality of life, as well as take advantage of their grazing nature, some owners choose to set their rabbits in portable outdoor runs around the yard for a short time.
In addition, you can always add more variety and nutrition to your meat rabbits’ diets by supplying fresh greens, vegetables and even fruits. No matter what you choose to feed your rabbits, make sure fresh water is available at all times and that you purchase the highest-quality feed possible.
Cheap and easy to care for with little space and almost no noise, these hardy livestock are perfect for beginners and those looking to add another source of meat for their family.
My experience with New Zealands, Californians and Flemish Giants is that they are also bred for their docile natures. My family being dirt farmers in the Iowa, Missouri & Illinois always had rabbits ever since I can remember.
The Giant Chinchilla is a small boned rabbit, large in size and will put on market weight two weeks before any other breed and at no additional feed cost. However, their waste product is very pungent and breeders will need to understand that the disposal of their waste is an everyday occurrence, otherwise for urban breeders your neighbors will complain.
The only concern with doing this is if your rabbit is eating weed seeds that are making it our intact and therefore spreading weeds in the garden.
There’s a chicken coop and a fish pond, and the food that comes out of the pool, from tilapia to tomatoes, feeds the McClung family of five. They started with container gardens in the pool, which scorched almost immediately in the Arizona heat. It’s easily replicable and is ideal in arid places such as Arizona because it uses such a small amount of water. Their next move is to take what they’ve learned in the suburbs and bring it to other deserts, food and otherwise. Dennis says the most interesting part now is figuring out ways their system can be used in low-resource areas where farming is the backbone of the economy. He says that if they can make it work there, in suburban Arizona, anyone can grow their own food. The terms indicate what role the dogs play, though both livestock guardian as well as livestock herding dogs may simply be referred to as sheep dogs or working dogs. To see a pair of border collies in action with sheep, please see the link to a short video I’ve included in the notes below. They are very protective and can be quite fierce toward strangers, predators or other potential threats, but with proper socialization they can be quite safe to handle and have around family, friends and of course livestock. Because these effective little dogs are so small, kicks from cattle traditionally go right over the dog’s head rather than striking and injuring or killing the animal.
Indeed, it’s what they have been bred and trained for, because the main purpose of a LGD is to protect your herd or flock from other predators by staying with them at all times.


They also have exceptional hearing, are quite strong, and generally show good situational awareness. With great intelligence and independence, this breed is characterized by great protectiveness and gentleness toward its herd or flock.
In recent years, kangals have gained in popularity as family dogs specifically because of their gentle but strongly protective dispositions. A properly bred and raised Great Pyrenees will be a calm, relaxed, confident dog with strong protective instincts for its herd but is extremely gentle with livestock and children.
In the united states the handle pointer was given to this bread because there is no classification in the AKC for utility dog. Manchesters are always black and tans, easy maintenance, short coats and the calmest, quietest of the terrier breeds.
Before you say someone's statement is false you might want to do research on the subject before you make that assumption. Their temperament is kinda laid back and not high energy bouncing off the wall, gotta have something to do ! Their double coat protects them from inclement weather and extreme cold and freezing temperature as well as extreme heat.
There are a multitude of breeders for work and show which in my opinion is no difference in the dogs abilities. They can be trained to do just about anything but of course everyone has a favorite breed that may be needed for their specific purpose, this is MY favorite. For trained protection animals in my opinion nothing beats a pair of Akita, they naturally watch for any possible threat and guard you constantly, they are silent except in response to real threats, have no smell and are nearly as clean as cats. One meat buck can be ready to butcher and supply your family with 5 pounds of meat in as little as 10 weeks! If noise in your neighborhood could be a problem, these rodents can be the perfect solution.
You can purchase meat rabbits from a local breeder (a national rabbitry directory can be found online), 4-H club, or local feed store.
Whether you’re a new urban farmer just starting out or an experienced homesteader out in the country, meat rabbits can offer great return for your efforts. To this day I raise rabbits for meat and I sell to Prepper's, Urban Homesteaders, 4-H-er's and for Pets.
While the droppings can used as fertilizer, it still must be aged so as not to burn garden crops. I toss rabbit manure directly on my garden and my plants, especially things like raspberries and rhubarb, love it!
It’s a system that took a few frustrating failures to perfect, but now the McClungs hope to take swimming-pool farming international. Unintimidated, and with no interest in swimming, Dennis drew up a model and two days after they moved in they started framing up a greenhouse in the pool. All the parts are linked — it’s almost Rube Goldberg-esque in its connections — to create an ecosystem that’s almost entirely self-sustaining and thrives in Mesa’s harsh climate.
They’ve built pools in Haiti, as well as in their community, and they’ve turned their house and yard into a permaculture lab. Water from the fishpond is pumped into hydroponic beds where they grow everything from wheat to sweet potatoes in low-moisture coconut coir (A growing medium made from the fibers of the coconut husk, which holds water well in dry climates).
In addition to the circular aquaponic system, which he’s continually tweaking, he has designed a UV water sterilizer that’s housed in a five-gallon bucket. The taste of the soups are delicious, making it an easy everyday meal for the whole family.
They might be small, but when properly trained these little dogs can prove quite useful as a working breed. Like several other livestock guardian breeds that originate from Turkey, the Anatolian shepherds descend from dogs with ancient heritage and history as working animals. Wary and potentially even aggressive toward strangers, the breed is intensely loyal to their family and will protect any humans or animals that it recognizes as being part of the flock. This dog can do it all, provide food, protection, and carry a load, although most are not viscous, they don't miss much and will sound the alarm if something out of the ordinary is going on.
Excellent hunters, April also herds sheep for fun, April is small, a little over 15 lbs and at 12 yrs old, retired. Genetic diseases in dogs were born with the dawn of beauty pageant breeding where no ability other than looking pretty was demanded. They can be too quick to attack, but sometimes that's a good thing they are very focused and extremely loyal. Able to thrive even in small spaces, it’s no wonder that meat rabbits are enjoying a surge in popularity, both on large homesteads and small urban farms. Also, it is said that a rabbit can produce 6 pounds of meat with the same amount of feed that takes for a cow to produce one pound of meat. Even if you’re not interested in raising meat rabbits for yourself, their meat is certainly worth a try. I raise the Giant Chinchilla and to this day I have yet Butchered one for meat and the people I sell too keep them as pets.
It can be an additional source of income if you have the area and means to age and market (package and or sell) it. Liberty, is active duty, a little larger at 22 lbs and with a heavier coat, she is from Canada, she loves the water and cold weather, although I wouldn't take her out too long in freezing weather. Actually my ideal is a small dog for alert and possible going to ground for small animals, middle size for protection AND for other types of work, AND a large dog for intimidation and protection. Untrained in protection though all they'll do to a human attacker is tear their clothes off, but that's true of most untrained dogs, they have to be taught to grab some meat on human enemies.
If larger livestock is too expensive for you to raise, meat rabbits are easy to raise on a budget. So stick to New Zealand's, Californian's, and the many other breeds out there and do not discount the cross bred rabbits as a meat supplier. Still, a great idea to supply protein for a family of preppers and the extra meat when they breed can used to barter (or give) to those that didn't prepare. Dennis says that about a third of them are installed in actual pools, and that they dig ponds for the rest. Both of these dogs can feed themselves catching small game, they could feed me too, I just need to learn how to clean squirrels! Plus Akita look like harmless Teddie bears, they are if they consider you part of their pack, they are much heavier than they look males can reach 120lbs or more and they won't draw as much attention to you as any other breed so they are naturally tactical animals. The Flemish Giant Cross Bred rabbit is an excellent producer of meat as stated by other contributor in this article. Best when stored in a cool dry place at temperatures between 55?F and 70?F (ideal humidity 15%). They’ve learned that sweet potatoes grow well without soil, but that they have to plant fruit trees outside of the pool.
I have seen her chase and bring down a full grown deer and crunch an armadillo's spine in one bite.



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