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A year ago I adopted a pug rat terrier mix.

She loves to stalk birds and rodents. I understand this is in her and so I was hoping to be able to train her to hunt. The reason being I don't want her killing other animals. I thought if I trained her to hunt a decoy or something she would do that instead. Or would this just make it worse?

She's already caught 2 robins and a mouse.
For such a small dog I'm very surprised.
Any ideas?
 

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It is unlikely she will ever prefer a decoy over live prey.

Terriers are ratters and they're very good at it (much better than cats.) My daughter's miniature schnauzer, all 17# of him, killed a red squirrel. Red squirrels are very quick and kind of nasty, so I was surprised, but not too upset about it.

A friend had a terrier mix that killed several flying squirrels, which WAS upsetting since they are a protected species.

At some point, the wildlife will learn to avoid your yard - or not. The killer schnauzer, my Plott hound and lab and Dante (an ambiguous, feral-looking beast) are all out patrolling my yard and, while I hear some birds singing, I am confident that they are on the safe side of the fence.
 

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You can focus her hunting drive to limit her to killing rodents vs. songbirds, or you can substitute other activities for hunting while you are extinguishing her killing of critters. Personally, I would choose the former.

Any way you go, it will take some work. Sublimating the hunting drive means that the replacement activity needs to satisfy that drive. If you were to successfully extinguish the hunting behavior, without providing a suitable outlet, you would very likely see the emergence of behaviors that you like a lot less than squirrel-cide.
 

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For what it's worth, robins aren't really as nice as most people think.

I was prevented from approaching my own strawberry patch for most of the prime season by a robin guarding her nest. "Hey! I don't care about your eggs. I just want my strawberries!"
 

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It's a hard behavior to break because it's so closely tied with eating which is an impossible behavior to break. It's also hard wired into the dogs brain and you have to realize that when he's outside, every instinct in his body is screaming at him to hunt. It's kind of like training a hound to not follow his nose. It's next to impossible to accomplish because the instinct is so incredibly strong.
 
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