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National technical network on livestock guarding dogs

 · Shared by : Barbara Ducreux
 · Last update : 13 December 2019
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Initiative
description

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Implementation, use
and maintenance

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further

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Comments

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Initiative
description

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Leader name
Livestock Institute
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Entity type
Association
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Launching Date
9 January 2017
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Assessment initiative
Not assessed
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Initiative Type
Educational tool
Information sharing
Livestock guarding dogs
Other Communication, information and awareness
Support
Training
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Wildlife species
Badgers / weasels / Wagons
Brown bear
Fox
Lynx
Wolf
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Issues
Human well-being
Livestock
Pets
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Intervention area
France

BACKGROUND

Many regions in France are affected by depredation; wolves, bears, lynx, foxes, badgers, crows or stray dogs are responsible. Back in the French landscapes for more than 25 years, wolves cause the most damage today.
Dogs are one of the tools available to breeders to help them protect their flocks. Thanks to an imposing morphology, they generally dissuade any intruder from approaching the herd. On the lookout for any disturbance, they intervene, clearly express their disapproval and can go to the direct confrontation with the disruptive element if their warnings are not enough. The livestock guarding dog remains the most adaptable and effective tool even in case of strong depredation pressure.
Today, their number is estimated at at least 4000 individuals and we have information for very few of them.
For many years, breeders found themselves alone, without help, to set up these dogs to protect their flock.
For some, the dog was perceived as a very easy use: they thus thought they just had to buy a "purebred" dog and put it in the herd so that the problems disappear. It is this wrong perception of reality that has led many breeders to acquire a livestock guarding dog without asking for the "instructions".
Today, there are real needs on the ground for the transfer and sharing of know-how to improve the effectiveness of dogs as a means of protecting herds, in a context where dogs can be at the root of conflicts or incidents with other users of pastoral areas.

DESCRIPTION

To support pastoralists and shepherds and give them the keys to successfully introduce a livestock guarding dog into their herd and its use on a daily basis, a national technical network on dogs has been set up.
Its objective is to disseminate knowledge and know-how in the use of livestock guarding dogs. The diffusion of this knowledge goes through collective training and individual support, carried out at the request of the farmer on his farm.

PRINCIPLE

A network made up of experienced sheep breeders or shepherds in the field of livestock guarding dogs support volunteer breeders and shepherds through group training and individual assistance directly on the farm to facilitate the setting up and use of livestock guarding dogs.
The network can intervene throughout France; only breeders eligible for the herd protection measure against wolves (Wolf Plan 2018-2023) can be financially supported.

CONDITIONS OF SUCCESS

Have experienced breeders and shepherds in terms of livestock guarding dogs who want to invest in coaching their colleagues
Financial support from the State in relation to the establishment of protection measures and dogs in particular


Advantages

  • - Quickly operational
  • - A network for breeders by breeders
  • - Sharing of experiences, knowledge and know-how between breeders
  • - Personalized advice adapted to the specificity of the territory and the farming system
  • - An outside contact available to answer questions

Disadvantages

  • - Late implementation in relation to the depredation problem by the wolf and the number of livestock guarding dogs already on the farms.
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Implementation, use
and maintenance

IMPLEMENTATION

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Workforce
1
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Workload
-
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Training
Expert: training > 3 months
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Training duration
-
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Financial cost
-
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Currency financial cost
-

IMPLEMENTATION KEY STEPS

354/5000
Regular meetings to set up the network for:
1. Sharing and formalizing knowledge
2. Structuring the network
3. Structuring the range of support for pastoralists and shepherds (group training and support / individual follow-ups)

Launch of the network

Organization of an annual meeting to create a link between all members of the network

EQUIPMENTS

  • - A web page dedicated to the subject to communicate: http://chiens-de-troupeau.idele.fr
  • - A brochure presenting the network
  • - A brochure presenting technical support in the framework of the Wolf Plan

USE & MAINTENANCE

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Workforce
10
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Workload
-
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Training
No specific training required
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Training duration
-
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Financial cost
-
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Currency financial cost
-
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Annual period of use
All year
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Daily period of use
Day

STEPS OF USE

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EQUIPMENTS

  • - Human resources
  • - 6 national referents who carry out collective training and individual accompaniment (national activity)
  • - 14 local relays that provide individual support (at the level of their department)
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To go
further

Icon Contact barbara.ducreux@idele.fr
Icon Internet links
http://chiens-de-troupeau.idele.fr
Icon Funding opportunities Ministry of Food and Agriculture Grant for setting up and running the network Multi-year support

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Comments

  • Je ne saurais trop recommander de prendre contact avec Mathieu Mauries, éleveur de longue date et dont les travaux sur le sujet sont vraiment intéressants. J’ai pu travailler (sans le savoir de prime abord) avec deux chiennes issues de son élevage cet été, sur un gros troupeau 1800 têtes… des chiens sociables, posés, non agressifs avec l’humain ni avec leurs congénères….Mathieu est je crois d’excellent conseil.

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