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Four labradors and a labrador puppy

(25 Posts)
Daisyanswerdo Sat 18-Jun-16 16:39:45

I'm looking after four labrador dogs and a labrador puppy for the next 10 days. I've looked after the dogs before but having the puppy as well does complicate matters. The dogs are very well trained and come when they are called, stay, wait, sit etc but the puppy? No! And now I think one of the hens is broody. I'm by myself; I can email the owners but they are abroad. I've just asked if there are some gloves I can borrow so I can do something about the broody hen.

Just thought I'd share!

ninathenana Sat 18-Jun-16 16:47:19

Gloves.....broody hen ???"

Alea Sat 18-Jun-16 16:48:00

I am imagining the scenario - labrador puppy chasing the broody hen.....
Hope you have plenty of winewine

Christinefrance Sat 18-Jun-16 16:50:42

OMG you are a glutton for punishment. I can see lots of fun and hard work too with the dogs. Not sure about broody hen, can you get some eggs for her to sit on. My husband says if you get eggs for her make sure she has food and water nearby. You probably know all this but trying to help. Good luck.

merlotgran Sat 18-Jun-16 16:53:45

If you need gloves because it pecks when you try to shove it off the eggs use a saucepan lid as a shield and give it a firm but gentle push.

If it comes back at you like the chicken from hell leave it alone to sit for the ten days.

Is there a cockerel?

Do the owners want chicks?

Daisyanswerdo Sat 18-Jun-16 17:33:50

No merlotgran there isn't a cockerel. I don't think they want chicks - the dogs are the main interest. I'm not really frightened of her but if she does peck me it could make doing everything else more difficult! The saucepan lid is a very good idea. If I leave her to sit, will she get off to get food and water by herself? I did have broody hens on my smallholding but I put them in a coop on the ground and could put food and water nearby. This hen is in a nesting box in the henhouse. Thanks for all the replies.

Christinefrance Sat 18-Jun-16 17:37:35

Yes she will get off for food and water if you leave it nearby. As merlotgran said just leave her to it then

Daisyanswerdo Sat 18-Jun-16 17:41:14

Thanks Christine. What does everyone think about taking the eggs? Do I leave one? a couple? none? Very grateful for this feedback. I haven't had a reply from the owner yet.

merlotgran Sat 18-Jun-16 18:03:05

If you can get to the eggs I wouldn't bother leaving any for her to sit on. She'll hop off and get food and water then when the other hens have laid their eggs she'll hop back on them again.

Daisyanswerdo Sat 18-Jun-16 18:47:10

Well - I've just been out to the henhouse - all hens out in the run, 6 eggs waiting. So it was probably a false alarm! She probably realised there was no future in it. Now there's just the recalcitrant puppy. Thank you so much for all the help and advice.

merlotgran Sat 18-Jun-16 18:49:17

That's breakfast sorted, Daisy grin

Daisyanswerdo Sat 18-Jun-16 18:53:51

I'll say, merlotgran! Which reminds me, I could do with some merlot, and here I am in somebody else's house and what didn't I bring with me? Boo.

merlotgran Sat 18-Jun-16 19:03:28

Get raiding those cupboards, Daisy. There must be a stash somewhere grin

Have wine on me anyway.

grannyqueenie Sat 18-Jun-16 22:26:34

Good luck Daisy, I've a feeling this thread could keep us all smiling for the next week or so! grin
p.s. hope you found some wine

GrAnne2 Sun 19-Jun-16 09:25:46

I've experience of labs & broodies here on our smallholding. Not much you can do with the pup unless you have a dog crate which gives secure respire to both of you! I've had broodies & whether they have fertile eggs or not, some never want to leave the eggs. I'd continue to lift her out of the best box as frequently as you can as cooling her down helps break the broodiness & her health will deteriorate if you don't. Also, I'd recommend removing the eggs as if she warms unfertilised eggs for a long time they will stink ... Good luck!

vickya Sun 19-Jun-16 09:33:27

Is the puppy the offspring of one of the other dogs? It's mum should be teaching it manners, and the rest too. They will indulge it a bit as they do with pups but usually only so far.Are you planning walks with them all off the lead or just leave them in the garden? Possibly the pup will come back with the rest when you call? Or bribe it with treats ;)

vickya Sun 19-Jun-16 09:34:14

its mum

GrAnne2 Sun 19-Jun-16 11:33:58

Typo -'respite'! Hope things are improving

Bez1989 Sun 19-Jun-16 13:13:09

Yes a dog crate is the best way to housetrain a puppy. Take out every hour and keep saying "go wee" until theres a result and call back with a treat and lots if praise. I taught my girl Westie that way. Shell still wee on command at 9 years. But has the run of the house
. Lol.

Daisyanswerdo Sun 19-Jun-16 16:01:39

They are all males, trained gundogs, which is what the puppy is destined to be. There's a fenced field belonging to the owners and I take them all there at least three times a day. They sleep in kennels outside. It sounds harsh maybe; but if I let them out into the garden and hope to sit and relax a bit, two of them come and behave like lovesick teenagers - covering me with affection and slobber, 'she loves me best' 'no, she loves me best'. They are all friendly, love to be talked to and petted. The puppy seems to know why I take him into long grass first thing in the morning, and performs without fail. He is learning from the big boys! I'm finding ways to encourage him back into his run, usually by waving his rope 'tuggy' which he loves, then lots of praise. All hens out this morning, by the way, and I collect eggs later. We'll see. It's lovely to read all the advice from doggy and henny g-netters!

TriciaF Mon 20-Jun-16 15:53:13

I don't envy you with all those dogs - two is enough for me.
As for the hen - one of ours is broody. Every day I lift her back end up by her tail feathers and remove all eggs but one. It's too far for her to reach round and peck me, though she squawks in an offended way.

Daisyanswerdo Tue 21-Jun-16 13:49:25

Update: I have two small soft rubber pads that I put between my big toe and the one next to it to try and prevent my bunions getting bunioner! Yesterday, I could only find one. Well, of course, immediate panic. On the web googling 'labrador digestive system' 'labrador swallowed rubber toy' and so on and so anxiously on. Most of the sites were in the US, and nearly all said 'take your dog to the vet immediately'. Right - load all five into my car and drive 10 miles . . . Went outside and there on the path, looking a bit like part of the gravel, was my toe pad.

Today all is well. The hen seems to have changed her mind about going broody. The dogs are all lovely, all those wagging tails in the morning, and their different personalities. Still it's a big responsibility and not much time to relax. BTW, I was 80 last month.

Lovely picture of you lifting your broody hen up by her tail feathers TriciaF! When I go to collect the eggs, if there is a hen on the nest I apologise and close the lid again quickly and quietly - feels like opening the loo door with someone inside!

TriciaF Tue 21-Jun-16 14:12:42

I'm interested in your rubber toe pads, Daisy.I've got the same problem with bunions and tried that with pieces of sponge, but they kept falling out. How do you keep yours in place?
Sorry for the thread drift.

Daisyanswerdo Tue 21-Jun-16 14:38:33

I got them at Boots TriciaF, and they are specially shaped to fit. I don't wear them with open-toed sandals because they are about £4 each and I hate losing them. I'm really not sure how effective they are, but they can't do any harm and they are comfortable. I've thrown the packaging away so can't give you a brand name, but I suspect they are Dr Scholls, or Boots own.

TriciaF Tue 21-Jun-16 17:26:09

Thanks Daisy - foot problems sad
By the way I'm nearly the same age as you - I was 80 (or 20) On 29th Feb.