Thursday, February 16, 2012

Old Dog Learns New Trick

Remember our dog Siona?
Yeah, that's her.
Siona follows me around a lot as I feed, milk the goats,  gather eggs, muck out pens and do all the other chores that come with running this place.
She doesn't help much...but she doesn't get in the way, either. She doesn't chase the animals or get aggressive towards them. A pretty well-behaved dog.
A few days ago, she asked to go out while I was vacuuming. She has a strong dislike for the vacuum cleaner, always had. So when I vacuum, she either goes outside or retreats to another room until I am done.
So, she goes out, I finish up the vacuuming and open the door to let her back in.
The chickens were out in the yard, wandering about and scratching and clucking. Siona comes in the back door and she is holding something in her mouth. I hold my hand out and say "Give it here" and she drops an egg in my hand! Not a scratch or dent on it! 
I praised her profusely and gave her a doggie treat. 
The egg was washed and put in the fridge.
Siona has never gone after the hens eggs before and I wondered if she was bringing the egg in to snack on, or whether she had found it in one of the hidey-holes on the back porch where the hens sometimes lay eggs and had decided it was something I needed to know about.
I didn't think about it until the next day (yesterday) when she was out for her morning "potty break" and I saw her trot into the chicken coop and return to the back door with another egg!
She brought it in and carefully put it on the floor at my feet and then looked at me, wagging her tail.
Yes, she got another doggie treat!
Yesterday afternoon, I put the chickens back in their coop as I usually do. Right before sunset, Siona was out in the yard and she was watching the hens in the coop attentively.
Then she barked, ran over to me, ran back to the coop and barked again.
I went over to the coop to see what she was so excited about and, sure enough, a hen had just laid an egg.
Apparently, Siona has figured out that we want the eggs, and being a good dog, she wants to help in this endeavor!
I have never seen a dog that gathered eggs before...or even heard of one!
Not bad for a 7 year old mixed-breed rescue dog that never lived on a farm before around 18 months ago!
Now, if I can train her to put the eggs in a little basket and bring them to me...


  1. Oh my goodness, what a GOOD little doggie!!

  2. That is so cool! I don't know that I've ever heard of this before. Do you want to trade my silly dog for her. lol You've got a gem there.

  3. Aw, now that's a GREAT story. What a smart sweetie she is!

  4. I've no doubt she can be trained to put them in a basket :)
    My dogs just eat all the eggs if they can get them, shell and all :( At least they don't eat the chickens too. I once left the door open in winter and in the morning found the our boof head dog cozily curled up in the hay under the perches, waiting for his breakfast to be laid.


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