Talk:Livestock guardian dog

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Please Note: The term Livestock guarding dog is the one used by scholars writing on the subject, not the term Livestock guardian dog, which is equally logical but just not the one adopted by those studing the subject.

Yorkshire Terrier?[edit]

I am not a dog breed expert, so I am just curious - is Yorkshire Terrier really livestock guarding dog? CyberGene 20:24, 24 September 2007 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was PAGE MOVED per discussion below. -GTBacchus(talk) 04:18, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

I noticed the little note at the top there, but considering that outside this article I've never heard "livestock guarding dog" used, and I've got half a dozen reliable and topically relevant sources sitting right in front of me that use "livestock guardian dog" exclusively, I think it's absurd for the name of the article to be what it is now. If anyone wants them I can produce all the sources with all the pertinent info. But claiming that "scholars" prefer one name without providing references is unacceptable. Even if this was true, what academia prefers is not automatically better. Books and member associations generally available that deal with the subject use "livestock guardian dog", and that is what people will be searching for. VanTucky talk 05:49, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

I notice that this page was earlier moved from Livestock guardian dog to Livestock guarding dog, and I checked the sources cited in the article. Of the four websites that loaded successfully and had any reference to the subject, two use "Guarding" (overwhelmingly), and two use "Guardian" (exclusively). Both "Guarding" sources seem to be more academic, and both "Guardian" sources seem to be more industry-oriented.

Based upon the principle from our naming conventions that Wikipedia is optimized for the general reader over the specialist, the case seems slightly stronger for Livestock guardian dogs. I think it might be good to gather a bit more input, so I'm relisting the request at WP:RM for another 5 days. -GTBacchus(talk) 02:16, 6 January 2008 (UTC)

That's fair. I can provide more resources (written for the general public, not industry publications or academic ones) of those that use guardian exclusively. VanTucky talk 02:20, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
Yes, I think that would be helpful. -GTBacchus(talk) 02:39, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • All of the sources I list below, which I've been using in Domestic sheep, exclusively use "livestock guardian dog". And keeping aware that it isn't a valid sole reason for changing the name, guardian gets more than 8,000 hits and guarding only gets over 2,000. The first hit for the latter term directly goes to the "Livestock Guardian Dog Association". It is indicative that the USDA prefers guarding, but this is the only major source that I have personally seen use it so far. I would agree with the assessment that the general public and most general reading sources use guardian, while specialized organizations such as the USDA use guarding. I would advocate using what most people are going to recognize. VanTucky talk 19:02, 6 January 2008 (UTC) [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8]
  1. ^ Ensminger, Dr. M.E.; Dr. R.O. Parker (1986). Sheep and Goat Science, Fifth Edition. Danville, Illinois: The Interstate Printers and Publishers Inc. ISBN 0-8134-2464-X. 
  2. ^ Smith M.S., Barbara; Mark Aseltine PhD, Gerald Kennedy DVM (1997). Beginning Shepherd's Manual, Second Edition. Ames, Iowa: Iowa State University Press. ISBN 0-8138-2799-X. 
  3. ^ Weaver, Sue (2005). Sheep: small-scale sheep keeping for pleasure and profit. 3 Burroughs Irvine, CA 92618: Hobby Farm Press, an imprint of BowTie Press, a division of BowTie Inc. ISBN 1-931993-49-1. 
  4. ^ Brown, Dave; Sam Meadowcroft (1996). The Modern Shepherd. Wharfedale Road, Ipswich 1P1 4LG, United Kingdom: Farming Press. ISBN 0-85236-188-2. 
  5. ^ Budiansky, Stephen (1999). The Covenant of the Wild: Why animals chose domestication. Yale University Press. ISBN 0300079931. 
  6. ^ Wooster, Chuck; Geoff Hansen (Photography) (2005). Living with Sheep: Everything You Need to Know to Raise Your Own Flock. Guilford, Conneticut: The Lyons Press. ISBN 1-59228-531-7. 
  7. ^ Sheep and Predator Management -2005, American Sheep Industry Association, May 6, 2005, retrieved 2007-12-27 
  8. ^ Simmons, Paula; Carol Ekarius (2001). Storey's Guide to Raising Sheep. North Adams, MA: Storey Publishing LLC. ISBN 978-1-58017-262-2. 
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Interactions with Herding Dogs?[edit]

Having read both this article and the one on herding dogs, I have to wonder how the two types of dogs interact when a rancher is using both. I ask because the herding dogs rely on predatory instincts to shepherd the animals, but the guardian dogs chase away predators. It might be helpful of the article had a section of how these two types of dogs interact when working for the same herd. —MiguelMunoz (talk) 09:34, 13 February 2010 (UTC)


This article lists Irish Wolfhound as being part of livestock guardian dogs. However, the Irish Wolfhound is not a breed recognized by the livestock guarding association of america as a dog that guards livestock. Furthermore, according to the FCI, AKC, ANKC, CKC, KC (UK), NZKC, UKC as well as the Irish Wolfhound Association of America the Irish Wolfhound is in the hound group, not the working group along with all other livestock guardian breeds. The hound group is comprised of dogs that hunt and chase animals. Therefore a rancher would never want an Irish Wolfhound to guard livestock, since it may instinctually hunt (course) livestock. Dogs in the Hound group have been breed for hunting, not guarding livestock. Dogs in the working group have been breed for specific tasks, such as guarding livestock. In conclusion, Irish Wolfhound should not be listed in the Livestock Guardian Dog section of Wikipedia. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:01, 4 March 2012 (UTC)

Interaction with predators[edit]

"The mere presence of a guardian dog is usually enough to ward off predators, but LGDs will confront predators by vocal intimidation, barking, and displaying very aggressive behavior. It is very rare for a LGD to attack a predator, as they are able to drive predators off otherwise"

This seems to be a misconception. How exactly are they going to drive predators away otherwise than attack them, offer them a car ride? My LGDs immediately launch at predators immediately, kill coyotes not to mention foxes and other smaller ones, and fought bear. Typical LGD behavior is described .

Afru (talk) 17:23, 27 February 2013 (UTC)


I think that Leonberger were used originally as Livestock guardian dogs. Not any more perhaps., (talk) 04:03, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

All of those references are pre-WW.The breed changed after almost been wiped out. Leo's are no longer used as LGD's, are not considered by any modern LGD expert to be LGDs and are not suitable as one. This list is for dogs currently used as LGDs. With one exception (an unsourced webpage) none of the references given on the this page by the person changing it have Leo's as LGDs. In fact if you look at the LEo club of Onterio's website (one of the links given) it doens't list LGD as their work and the ONLY reference is LGD's in their background. The change to list Leo's as current LGD's is unsupported!!!BigWhiteFireDog (talk) 13:57, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

I see your concern. Given your 200 dog experience with Great Pyrenees I appreciate your opinion. However, this all sounds like WP:OR, and you apparently don't have a WP:RS for your personal opinion. And there is nothing to the contrary compared to the five sources I've put in. In part, this could be about WP:TRUTH. An explanatory note with a source would help elucidate your distinction. 7&6=thirteen () 15:10, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

My experience is with close to a thousand Pyrs and other LGDs (including Anatolian's, Akbash, Kuvaz, Maremma's, and various OVcharkas) going back to the 70's when LGDs were first being rediscovered in the US, and includes LGD testing, training and placement. The 200 is just in-house. I also am a member of multiple LGD forums and mentor LGD owners across the country. None of your sources except the one unsourced webpage say anything about LEO's as LGDs. Herding is not LGD work. The Swiss paper doesn't give them as an LGD, the Onterio club link is for herding and dfoesn't list them as an LGD,and so one and so on. You have not supported your change.BigWhiteFireDog (talk) 17:21, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

Please show current evidence (pictures/persons) using Leo's as an LGD todayBigWhiteFireDog (talk) 17:42, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

Your personal anecdotal testimonial is interesting, but is not a WP:RS. Your self-authenticated expert testimonial is — putting it gently — not much more than an Ipse dixit. I wP:AGF. Nevertheless, I have put in five sources that you think are not good. I disagree. You have put in zero. Please show your WP:RSS, if they exist. 7&6=thirteen () 18:24, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

SO prove a negative basically. Right.... What is your background in Leo's and other LGDs just out of curiosity since you decided to insult mine?

Lets start with this. "Leonbergers are NOT outdoor dogs."... and, lists LGD breeds, no mention of Leos... "They excel in obedience, agility, therapy dog roles, water rescue work, and many other outdoor activities. It takes lots of patience, training and work; all of which adds up to TIME!" No mention of LGD work. Then there is this section further on,"Leos do not adapt well to being left outside alone." (Bit of a problem for an LGD)...!history/c1x4u No mention of LGD work and disputing whether Pyrs were even used to create the breed....!working/c1cni No mention of LGD work.... No mention of LGD work. "Farm work" does not mean LGD.... No mention of LGD work.... LGD work is not mentioned as work that they currently do... Link to FCI standard. No mention of LGD work. "Watch" doesn't mean LGD.... Considered the parent club. No mention of LGD work. Again "watch dog" doesn't mean LGD.... +4000 member LGD training/mentoring group list of recognized, currently working LGDs. Leos are not one of the breeds recognized. Not one member owns an LGD Leo nor knows of one working though several members own Leos as draft or therapy dogs. Group consensus is that they are not an LGD.... +2500 member LGD training/mentoring group list of recognized, currently working LGDs Leo's are not a recognized LGD breed here either and again group consensus is they are not an LGD...

Want more negatives to prove a negative or is that enough?

AS for your references, this reference of yours is invalid/non-supportive: No mention of them as an LGD, only "quite a few breeds in their background were used as flock guardians" (which isn't quite true as the Pyr is the only one) and the article is about using them as a herding dog (which btw negates them as an LGD as you can't have both due to prey drive issues). Another invalid one is this one "Working-Molosser" is the group and Leos are noted as "multipurpose working dog",that doesn't mean LGD. No mention anywhere of them being an LGD. This reference is also invalid: The use of guard dogs in the Swiss Alps: A first analysis". No mention of Leos at all except as being related to the St. Bernard. Next up as invalid/non-supportive is No mention of LGD work at all. "The Leonberger is an obedient, good-natured and fearless dog. A wonderful family companion, he is well known for his friendliness toward children. Leonbergers are seen participating in many dog sports and activities including agility, obedience, carting, water rescue and HERDING. Their gentle nature also makes them good candidates to work as Therapy dogs."

So that takes care of 4/5 leaving only a non-authoritative page. The Leo is not an LGD and that's not an opinion. Again, Please show current evidence (pictures/persons) using Leo's as an LGD today, something you have so far failed to do BigWhiteFireDog (talk) 22:13, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

I don't know. They are not mentioned in the AKC or any other breed standard, and mostly used as family dogs, but they was used as livestock guardian dogs and used for any other guardian purposes, and might be used again, I think the ability is there. Here somebody using them for herding. Hafspajen (talk) 15:40, 21 May 2014 (UTC)

1) Herding is not LGD work and in fact is almost the opposite as LGD work requires low prey drive and herding high prey drive (do I need to provide references for this statement?). Anytime a litter of pups is produced from a herding and an LGD (which happens somewhat often), it is recommended that the pups are either sold as pets or put down as there is internal conflict and a serious potential danger to stock. 2)There is no authoritative evidence of Leos and LGD work. If you look at the histories posted above from the breed clubs, there is no reference to LGD work, and in fact the predator populations in western Europe were pretty close to none existent and wolves had been exterminated in Germany by the time of the development of the Leo so there would not have been pressing need for such work. 3) There is no evidence that any such ability is there or they would currently be used for such work especially since only one of the 3-4 (and possibly more) breeds used to create the breed was an LGD breed. 4)With all due respect, this page isn't about what dogs "might" be used for LGD work. It's about LGD breeds and Leo's, although great dogs, are not an LGD breed. I am removing them from the list. BigWhiteFireDog (talk) 18:57, 21 May 2014 (UTC)

  • Manybe it would be an idea to mention Leonberger as a dog breed used previously as Livestock guardian dog. I mean it was a mountain dog. [1] [2] Hafspajen (talk) 19:12, 21 May 2014 (UTC)

Again, no authoritative evidence of them being used as a LGD. Also they are not a "mountain dog" The area is rolling hills and ag land and they were developed because the breeder wanted a "dog that looked like a lion" (multiple refs for this). Regardless of that, being a "mountain dog" as no bearing on being an LGD, there are some LGD's that are not mountain dogs and some Mountain dogs that are not LGDs. In addition, the link you gave is further evidence that the Leo is not an LGD and never was as that page lists dogs that were once LGDs but are not recognized nor used as one current (the Bernese Mtn Dog is one example). As for the other link, I'm not sure the point you were trying to make but it has nothing to do with this discussion. Since I know Cat Urbigkit, would you like a statement from her on the use of Leos? Will that end this discussion? BigWhiteFireDog (talk) 19:52, 21 May 2014 (UTC)