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Old 12-27-2006, 09:21 AM
 
265 posts, read 811,390 times
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I plan to locate in a rural area near Alamogordo in the coming year. Just wondered what the hazards will be for my pet dog Maggie Mae. She is 10 years old but still in good shape. A lab/German shepard mix around 70 lbs.

My plan is to have a chain link fenced in area so I can let her out of the house when she wants to go outside. She will still be an inside dog. The area is high desert, so I am wondering about what she will encounter.

Here in Illinois we do have some coyotes, but they have never been a problem in my area. There are basically few snakes and none are poisonous.

I am not familiar with what critters she might encounter outside in the desert. Would appreciate any comments from those who live in this type area. It would not be residential like the cities, but rural in nature. Thanks much.

Jim
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Old 12-27-2006, 11:11 AM
TKO
 
Location: On the Border
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Coyotes won't be a problem with the fence. Tanner, my 12 year old Britt (30 lbs), was bitten by a rattler though. Luckily, after a pretty intense period of hurting she pulled through ok. It's near impossible to keep them out, but there is snake aversion training available. Other than that you shouldn't have any problems you wouldn't have anywhere else. Namely, other peoples dogs.

I should add skunks. Not life threatening, but a real hassle none the less.
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Old 12-27-2006, 11:40 AM
 
265 posts, read 811,390 times
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Default Thanks TKO for your comments. My big

fear is rattlesnakes which you covered. One question I do have is when is the time of day to be most careful about rattlesnakes.?

I would guess mainly in the afternoon during the heat of the day when they could be out sunning? Or am I wrong about that. Also at night do they go underground so would not be a problem for a dog let out at night. Sometimes Maggie needs to go out at night. During the day I would plan to check the area when I let her out just to check for snakes.

Thanks for your help.

Jim
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Old 12-27-2006, 11:59 AM
 
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James... in the heat of summer most rattlers are under rocks or large coverings like wood pilies or under large shrubbs etc.. So just keep the yard clear as you can and for the most part you should be fine.

Of course you could have roadrunners inside your yard/fence as they are a rattlers worst nightmare
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Old 12-27-2006, 02:20 PM
 
Location: Beautiful California
253 posts, read 1,051,312 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by james57 View Post
I plan to locate in a rural area near Alamogordo in the coming year. Just wondered what the hazards will be for my pet dog Maggie Mae. She is 10 years old but still in good shape. A lab/German shepard mix around 70 lbs.

My plan is to have a chain link fenced in area so I can let her out of the house when she wants to go outside. She will still be an inside dog. The area is high desert, so I am wondering about what she will encounter.

Here in Illinois we do have some coyotes, but they have never been a problem in my area. There are basically few snakes and none are poisonous.

I am not familiar with what critters she might encounter outside in the desert. Would appreciate any comments from those who live in this type area. It would not be residential like the cities, but rural in nature. Thanks much.

Jim
Hello!

One of my neighbors here in the hills above Las Cruces has a snake-proof fence to protect his kids. Instructions are available through the University of California Extension Office (for Californians) or here at this online link from another University (both fences look the same):

http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/gaston/Pests.../snakefnc.html

HTH

~Cali-girl
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Old 12-27-2006, 02:41 PM
LLD
 
Location: Fairfax County, VA
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There is a rattlesnake vaccine you can get from the vet -- one shot then a booster -- I think it is a yearly thing. I did it for my 55 pound dog. My understanding is it really lessens the effects of a rattler bite on your dog, which for some can be fatal. My dog is 13 years old, and the vaccine cost about $30. Well worth the expense IMHO.
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Old 12-27-2006, 03:25 PM
_yb
 
Location: Central New Mexico
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Coyotes would rather have smaller dogs. If they wanted a dog of your dogs size the coyotes would draw your dog out so they can gang up on her. They already have a great buffet of small dogs and cats to chose from so your dog should be ok.

Mexican grey wolf: Totally dependent on livestock, pets and roadkill. Not to many out there to worry about though.

There are mountain lions down there but they would rather have goats, deer or horses than mess with a pesky dog.

Bear I would not worry to much about bears as most dogs can put a bear up a tree pretty easy.


Rattlers: Snake breaking your dog is the best for your dog. It involves a shock collar and a defanged rattle snake.
You will be able to find someone to give your dog this training in Alamogordo. They have a nice rattle snake roundup at the county fairgrounds every april should be able to get info on snake breaking there. Or you can ask a local vet, hunt club or gunshop.
I would not trust the vaccine at all.
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Old 12-27-2006, 03:30 PM
LLD
 
Location: Fairfax County, VA
654 posts, read 2,896,523 times
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Why woudl you not trust the vaccine? I talked quite a bit with my vet about it and they said it really did make a difference in lessening the effects of a bite.
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Old 12-27-2006, 03:31 PM
 
56 posts, read 209,368 times
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My parents are out in Belen. They have 2, 70lbs hounds who only live outside. The dogs have been bitten by rattlers, but have been fine due to quick vet visits & as LLD said, the vaccine (which might be your saving grace). They also have problems w/ gophers, rabbits, & cows eating all their plants/vegetation. Summer would be the worst time for snakes to be out. They can be 2 ft infront of you & you would'nt see them...seeky little buggers. The coyotes wont bother your dog since she's big. If she's not spade, that will be a problem. Harry o's right, roadrunners will take care of your snakes. Also cats will too, but then the coyotes might get them. Rural NM is tricky. Sorry I couldnt be much help, hope this helps.
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Old 12-27-2006, 03:45 PM
 
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If you get high enough in elevation, snakes won't be an issue. At 9,000 feet where I am, there are no snakes. Not sure what the cutoff is. You might call a ranger station and ask the Forest Service.
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