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Hello, how's everyone this morning? Ok, here's the deal. I'm from Louisiana and I live way, way, way in the country. I have alot of acreage. We have a huge problem with wild hogs here. They have destroyed my pasture from rooting up the ground. I also see them when I go running, and as you know they can have a nasty disposition. I obviously don't want a dog to fight the hogs, that would be mean. I just want a dog that will perhaps be intimidating to them, and also a dog that wouldn't run away or sit idly by if I was being attacked by a wild animal, lol. Any breed suggestions or other advice would be greatly appreciated. I've had many, many dogs down through the years, just never one with protective tendencies, so I'm lacking knowledge about these kinds of dogs. And, also, I don't want the dog ONLY for this purpose, I love dogs and don't have one now and wanted one anyway.
 

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Unfortunately, pigs aren't intimidated by much. Not running away or sitting by will generally get a dog killed when faced with hogs- and generally hogs won't attack a person unless you're dumb enough to mess with them on foot and alone. ;p

If you want to get rid of them, best bet is trapping and/or hiring someone to hunt them. Dogs won't do squat, and they get hurt if they try on their own- you need a whole group, and even then, dogs DO get hurt, sometimes badly.

We've had a feral hog problem for years at the farm (in Central TX). We have MUCH better luck just trapping and removing them than having anyone in to hunt.
Cait
 

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This is not a problem we have in the New York suburbs, so take my suggestions for what they are worth. Feral pigs are a huge problem because swine are intelligent, adaptable, stubborn, and capable of prolific breeding. They will not abandon an area unless they are pressed very hard. Even when hunted hard, they tend to become exclusively nocturnal. A barking dog will not run them off very far, or for very long.

If you want a dog to merely harass, hector, and generally worry pigs, one of the herding breeds (Heelers, Aussie Sheps, Border collies) would be a good choice. I think you could count on one of those guys to turn a charging sow or hog.

If you determine that thinning the herd is the way to go, a Jagdterrier (or two), or a Decker Terrier (or two) would be a good option.

But like Norway Rats and Coyotes, there doesn't seem to be any way to permanently eliminate these pests. If you rid your property of swine, they will migrate back from adjoining properties. If you have neighbors who supplement their incomes with pay-to-play hog hunting, you can forget about seeing an end to it. They may keep releasing domestic swine to keep populations up.
 

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they just had a show on animal planet about the wild hogs. I saw a few different breeds they used for different purposes. They had a pit bull , a hound of some sort and another hound. I cant remember exactly the purpose of the pitbull but the hounds where used for scent purposes to corner the hog.
 

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Thanks everybody for the suggestions so far. I'm working on a short list of possible breeds. Rhodesian Ridgeback (I really want one of these, but they're kind of hard to find and expensive), German Shepherd, Doberman and some more.....
 

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Aren't Catahoula Leopard Dogs specifically bred to be hog hunters? The Catahoulas I've known were definitely tough enough to take on a hog, LOL.
 

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If you get a Ridgeback, you may want to get a horse so you can keep up with him. If you go with a breed that hunts hogs (whether a bay dog or a catch dog) you have to figure out what to do with an angry pig when the chase reaches its logical conclusion.

People who employ dogs to hunt feral pigs expect to have dogs injured, and even killed. I think the feral pig's reputation is somewhat exaggerated, but they can give a good account of themselves when cornered or when defending their young. Hell, a mama squirrel can be quite fierce when defending her babies.
 

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It's a foggy idea, but aren't American Bulldogs, Ridgebacks, and curs the hog hunters? Clearly, they'd have to be properly trained to hunt and couldn't just be put out there and hope for the best, but I thought they were the breeds typically used.
 

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A hog is not going to be intimidated by a dog, if anything they will go after the dog just like they will people. They fight back when the dogs go to catch them. You will need a gun to protect yourself and your dog. When dogs hunt hogs it is the human which kills the hogs, the dogs can only hold the hog so long. So if you encounter a wild hog randomly a dog might die. Especially as I wouldn't imagine they would be walking around with a cut vest 24/7.

Breeds that make good catch dogs, if you go that route as its plenty of meat to last a good while. To name a few......
American Pit Bull Terrier
American Bulldog
Dogo Argentino
Catahoula Leopard Dog can hunt and catch and their are some crossed with bulldog also for the purpose of catch

Perhaps you can also rent some of your property to hunters? I know people which do this, works out great for both parties.
 

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You being in Louisiana is probably not that different from the situation in Florida.


Wild/feral hog 101.

The wild and feral hogs in the south have been here since the Spanish Explorers. The Explorers attempted to carry their pork rations on the hoof. And hogs don't herd so well in an expedition enviroment. Many escaped and being very adaptable, survived. Their descendents still roam Florida and the Southeastern United States. The genetic evidence to support that comes from the mule footed and waddled wild hogs we commonly catch in Florida.

Then add the fact that Florida was a free range state. Meaning folks fenced their crops and left their stock to run wild in the woods. Gathering them at Butchering time. More hogs got loose.

And.... Hunters imported Russian Boars and released them for sport.

Now we have an ustoppable invasive species on our hands. I cannot speak for other states. I know there are populations of wild hogs in most of the Southern States, Texas, California as well as some other states. But Florida tends to be wild Hog Central. I don't think anyone knows how many wild hogs we have in Florida. A million gets thrown out from time to time. But they really don't try to study them. Just control them.

In Florida wild hogs have several statuses. On private land they are the property of the land owner. On Public Hunting Land they are given game status. Mostly to control out of season hunting of other species. (This is changing though because only allowing hunting during deer season does not keep their populations in check. The state is now having off season hog hunts.) On other public lands they are considered pests, nuisances, and general pains. On Federal Land they are also considered pests.

They are VERY prolific. A female can breed by 8 months of age. She will have from 4 to 10 or more pigs and can have two litters a year. Momma pigs are very very good mothers. A crafty bobcat might get a piglet. Panthers get a few piglets as well as young adult pigs. Gators get a few both pigs and adults. Bears get some. A coyote might snatch a baby now and again. Same with the larger hawks and owls. But by an large their survival rate is great. If you watch a litter in the woods you frequent it would be uncommon more than one or two out of a litter of 8 to be missing by the time they are 25 or 30 pounds. And by that time they are home free. The only predators left are bears, humans, panthers, and gators. They are onry and mean by then and can take care of themselves. Before that the mothers are very formidable.

They will eat anything and can survive in places and in numbers you would never imagine. They compete with our native deer, bears, ground feeding birds, squirrels, etc. They eat fruits, nuts, grasses, roots, etc. They will destroy agricultural fields. Sod farms, etc. Plus they will eat ground nesting bird eggs (the birds too if they can catch them) fawns, snakes, turtles, frogs, toads, a weak calf, etc.

Wild hogs have been a part of my life since I could walk. I have a sort of love hate relationship with them. On one hand they have cost my family money and me money personally. They destroy our natural environment and add significant pressure to our native species. On the other hand, they are SMART, tough, tenacious, and great survivors. I admire that.

I grew up in a family that were both hunters and had agricultural operations. So hogs were always both sport and a nuisance. We seemed to always been thinning hogs. I have also been a licensed Nuisance Wildlife trapper since I was about 18 years old....I cannot begin to say how many hogs I have trapped, shot, caught with dogs etc. I have also caught a few in more colorful ways (When I was younger and crazier.) I have bailed off a horse on ones back, bailed out of the back of pickups, off an airboat, etc. Several thousand would be a good safe quess. I have trapped hogs under license in state parks, federal land, private ranches, subdivisions, city parks, farms, even NASA Property and Air Force bases.

Hogs seem to have a mystic or reputation about them as far as being dangerous. They are tenacious and will stand and fight given the right circumstances. And they are capable of hurting you. But I have to say, in all my time, I have never had an unprovoked hog come after me. Provoked ones yes. but then again, I have done a lot of provoking. I have a couple of scars and that is about it. Got gashed on the shin, got bit on the foot (fell down grabbing a hog that was bayed up against a bull panel fence. Was kicking the hog off me) And a slash on one of my calves.

I have hunted hogs with dogs. I have owned hog dogs. I will still hunt with people that run dogs, but I am too tender hearted as far as dogs are concerned to hunt with dogs I have trained and cared for. Because it is a VERY rough game. Hunters do lose dogs.

Basically there are two types of hog dogs. Bay dogs and Catch dogs. Bay dogs bay. Catch doges catch.

Bay dogs can be any number of breeds and crosses. Hounds and curs mostly. Most of the coonhounds, Plotts, etc make good bay dogs. As long as they have a good nose, can run and are fairly fearless. Catahoulas, Blackmouthed, Leopard, Mountain Curs make great bay dogs. Many folks favor the curs over the hounds because they seem to have a bit more grit and courage. Someone mentioned Ridgebacks. I have hunted with a guy that runs Ridgebacks and they do well.

A bay dogs job is to trail, chase and then bay the hogs. Hogs will run when chased by dogs 9 times out of 10. But they will eventually stop. How far they run before they bay up depends on the hogs, the weather, terrain, the dogs, etc. It may be 30 yards, it may be two miles. A momma with pigs is not going far. She is going to find a place to stash her pigs and fight the dogs. young adult sows and little boars will usually run the farthest. Large solo breeding boars will not usually run far. They are tough and know it. They would rather fight it out with the dogs.

When the hog bays up it will be someplace the hog feels he has an advantage. A thicket, Palmettos, ti ti marsh, etc. The hog knows his backside is volunerable so he will find something thick to back up to and make fight from there.

The bay dogs job is not to fight the hog but worry him and get him bayed up in one spot until the hunters and or catch dogs get there. But it does get dicey for bay dogs at times. Hogs depending on age and sex are herd animals. Called Sounders. The big boars are solo or in small groups which is good. But sometimes the bay dogs can find themselves in a thicket with a sounder of hogs (sows, pigs, shoats, and young boars) numbering 30 or more. 10 to 12 is not uncommon. Luckily these sized hogs mostly want to get away. But at times bay dogs find themselves cornered by some tired ticked off hogs and it can be bad.

Some hunters use a second type of dog, and some hunters will dispatch or hand catch the hogs after the bay dogs have done their job.

The Catch Dogs...... These are usually bull breeds and crosses. Pit Bulls and pit mixes are the most common. Some folks use American Bulldogs, Argentinian Dogos, and other exotic Mastiff and bull dog type dogs. But the Pit Bull is the king of this game.

The catch dog does exactly what his name says. He runs in and catches the hog. Some hunters use a single catch dog and some use a pair or even a trio. The dog is smaller and faster than the hog, so he usually grabs him and hangs on. But this is the ROUGH part of the game. It can get ugly. Very ugly. Dogs get cut up and worse at times. In recent years many hunters have gone to using kevlar vests and neck guards on their catch dogs. Which has cut the injuries to the dogs down a bit. That is about as far as I am going with that.


To answer your question..... Having a dog to harrass the hogs is asking for trouble. A herding breed would probably harrass them. But it would have to be a tenacious herding breed. Like an ACD that was willing to run in and bite them to get them going. They actually use ACDs and ACD mixes as both bay and catch dogs in Australia. A Border Collie or other herding breed that herded with looks and eyes would be useless. Because hogs can't see for squat and are not easily intimidated like sheep and dairy cattle. A slower less mobile dog is going to get cut quick and even a fast agile dog is going to get it sooner or later if it harrassing the same sounder of hogs over and over.
They would not leave anyway. They would just pattern you and the dog and become nocturnal.

Your best bet if you want them thinned out is to hire a trapper or find some ole boys that want some pork and let them trap or hunt them.
 
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