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Work Dog On The Homestead

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Do you want a livestock guardian dog or a herd dog as a work dog for your homestead? Didn’t know there was a difference? There is, a huge on actually. In fact, in all likelihood, you need both types of traditional farm working dogs on your homestead or survival retreat.

Work Dog On The Homestead: The Best In What They Do

Livestock guard dogs (LGDs) protect your livestock and by extension, your homestead, from predators. These dogs are typically very large and very protective of just not the livestock, but the entire family – but do NOT live with the humans inside the home.

Herd dogs work the land and animals by day but tend to live with the family at night. These breeds are high energy and commonly have only two speeds – 100 MPH or zero – and snoozing, after putting in many hours doing necessary work around the homestead.

Best Herding Dog Breed

Best Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The HomesteadBest Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The Homestead
Blue and red heelers, or a blue and red mix as shown in the photo, are extremely agile dogs. There is no where livestock can roam that the dogs cannot follow and herd them away from – or alert you to the location where the animal has become stuck.

Blue or Red Heelers are the absolute best herding dog around. The number of hours of work we would have to put in on our 56-acre homestead without our brother/sister pair of blue heelers is staggering to even think about.

The epitome of the herd dog breeds is also commonly referred to as Australian Cattle Dogs, Australian Heelers, and Queensland Heelers. They were bred specifically for the task of herding and predator detection by Australian farmers in the Outback through a series of trial and error.

Australian sheep farmers who grew tired of losing valuable time herding their livestock and coming up shy on their herd count due to wanderers killed by predators or that strayed too far to find, mixed together various traditional domesticated and wild canine breeds until they came up with the perfect combination.

Modern red or blue heelers stem from an ancestry of dingo, collie, keplie, bull terrier, and even Dalmation heritage. The meidum size dogs are known for their excellent endurance and agility. They commonly live to reach 13 to 15 years old.

Best Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The HomesteadBest Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The Homestead
Australian Cattle Dogs must be both physically and mentally stimulated to have a fulfilled existence. Bad behaviors from this breed only present themselves when the homesteading dogs become bored from a lack of activity or when penned in a confined space.

Heelers demand, and thrive, on both mental and physical stimulation. Folks who just love the beautiful look of the dogs and their affectionate and loyal nature will be so very sorely disappointed and frustrated with the breed if they think a daily walk around the block and suburban backyard will fulfill their needs.

They are very intelligent dogs and learn very quickly. During their first 12 months you simply must expect them to be hyper – there is just no other way to put it. Our vet told us if we could survive the first year Jovie and her brother, Ruger, would be the best dogs we ever welcomed into our family – and he was right.

Best Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The HomesteadBest Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The Homestead
Blue heeler love having a companion to herd the livestock with – and to but off excess energy after the work day is through.

The heelers got their familiar moniker due to the way they herd large livestock, by nipping them on the heel. They will never, ever, allow a horse, goat, sheep, cow, steer, calf – or even an ornery bull to stray from exactly where they belong.

They do not injure the livestock with their herding techniques but get their point across just the same. Do not be shocked if the heeler attempts to herd you as well. It took a few months to teach Jovie there was absolutely no need to imprint her teeth onto the heel of my cowboy boots to keep me moving!

It took me only about an hour to teach Jovie and Ruger (separately) that my chickens and ducks were not a snack but critters they were in charge of keeping nearby and protecting. If a hawk swoops within six feets of the ground to try to snatch a chicken or duck, the “majestic” bird of prey will wind up being the snack instead of having one.

In spite of their herding work dog nature, they are incredibly gentle with children and loyal – as in, they will often fall asleep on your feet to make sure you don’t dare make a move which they are not aware.

Best Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The HomesteadBest Herding Dog Breed | Work Dog On The Homestead
Blue and red heelers are constantly on guard. Both their vision and hearing is top notch, allowing them to notice a predator is near long before the livestock they are tasked with watching over and herding, is placed in jeopardy.

Male blue and red heelers commonly weigh about 33 to 35 pounds. Female Australian Cattle Dogs commonly weight approximately 31 to 35 pounds. Jovie, my “spunky beast” was the giant of her liter and weighs about 60 pounds of pure muscle. The males of the breed routinely reach about 20 inches tall with females staning just an inche or two shorter.

Blue heelers (or red) will climb right into bed with you if you let them -telling them they are off duty for the day will not suffice. if not permitted to snuggle at night, they will prefer to sleep on the floor right next to their human so they are ready to roll once your feet hit the floor.

Heelers are a one-person dog. While they will love and protect the entire family with the every ounce of their being, they will claim only one soul as their human and listen to that person’s commands with an absolute sense of duty and be their shadow until their dying day.

Best Livestock Guardian Dog Breed

Livestock guardian dogs are strictly outdoor animals who live with the herd or flock and protect it during the dangerous nighttime hours and throughout the day. These lovable beasts sleep in the barn or in a dog box next to the chicken coop or small livestock pens.

Multiple livestock guardian dogs are commonly found on farms and homesteads. They live and amicably work together while keeping a keen eye on the chickens, ducks, sheep, goats, cattle, and horses.

They quickly learn their territory and will fight to the death to protect it. The livestock guardian dogs form a tight bond with the animals they are tasked with protecting, even at an early age.

The Great Pyrenees is far and above the best of all great livestock guardian dogs. Some keepers of this breed even brag they have not had to coop-up their poultry anymore because their beloved Great Pyrs does such a great job of teaching deadly predators farm avoidance and patrols its territory with a ferocious sense of duty like a canine Marine.

There is little to no training involved when it comes to teaching a Great Pyrenees to protect the livestock and to learn its territory – such behavior simply comes natural to them. They are incredibly gentle giants who inherently know the difference between predators and pets and livestock commony found on the homestead.

These livestock guardian dogs will be sweet and tolerant of your little ones – and stand until their final breath between them and danger. They eagerly accept affection and remain patient when their humans and the pets which follow them around the farm, come into their domain.

The Great Pyrs just always seems to know how much force is necessary to thwart an unwanted visitor to the homestead. They simply cannot be tricked away from their herd by a clever predator that wants to double back and have a snack or pave the way for another pack member to do the same. And yes, they will also protect their herd/flock and human family from unwelcome two-legged predators as well.

While these dogs are quite active as puppies, their apparent demeanor changes substantially by adulthood. They do LOVE a good nap – but always keep one eye and both ears open so they are ready if dangers present itself.

The only downside to having a Great Pyrenees as a livestock guardian dog – other than their massive appetite, is frequent barking if not corrected from the annoying behavior by the time they are eight months to one year old.

Great Pyrenees dogs typically have a life span of 10 to 12 years. Males commonly grow to be about 32 inches tall and females reach a height of 29 inches. Male Grat Pyrs weigh approximately 110 to 120 pounds on average and females grow to be about 80 to 90 pounds.

Real Dog Supreme shows us a video on the Great Pyrenees as a great guardian family dog:

Having both a livestock guardian dog and a herding dog on your hometead is ideal, but if the budget allows only for one dog on the homestead, go with a blue heeler herding dog. While this would leave your herd or flock vulnerable at night, unless you could pull off training them to live with their protectees, and that will not be easy, you get the overall best of both worlds.

Do you own a Heeler or a great Pyrenees? Let us know in the comments below.

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Self Sufficiency

NYC Adds Nearly 4,000 People Who Never Tested Positive To Coronavirus Death Tolls

New York City added nearly 4,000 people who never tested positive for the coronavirus to its death toll Tuesday, bringing coronavirus-related deaths in the city to around 10,000 people.

The city decided to add 3,700 people to its death tolls, who they “presumed” to have died from the virus, according to a report from The New York Times. The additions increased the death toll in the U.S. by 17%, according to the Times report, and included people who were suffering from symptoms of the virus, such as intense coughing and a fever.

The report stated that Democratic New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio decided over the weekend to change the way the city is counting deaths.

“In the heat of battle, our primary focus has been on saving lives,” de Blasio press secretary Freddi Goldstein told the Times.“As soon as the issue was raised, the mayor immediately moved to release the data.”

The post New York City added nearly 4,000 people who never tested positive for the coronavirus to its death toll appeared first on Daily Caller

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Self Sufficiency

How To Make Lacto-Fermented Sauerkraut In A Mason Jar

The thing about homesteading is you get to create your own ingredient right from scratch! Cheese, yogurt, butter and now sauerkraut, a delightfully sour and crunchy ingredient you can use on your meals — or consume by itself — while on a homestead, or while facing this health crisis!

This homemade sauerkraut is a great meal because it has a long shelf life. You can either make plain sauerkraut or mix it with herbs and spices. In this tutorial let us make Lacto-fermented sauerkraut that preserves all the good probiotics in a jar, good for your guts.

So how to make sauerkraut in a mason jar?

RELATED: How To Make Buttermilk On Your Homestead

Delicious Sauerkraut Recipe Every Homesteader Should Know

Why Make Sauerkraut?


Not only does sauerkraut spoil a long time, but it is also a meal in itself, and it is also easy to make! You don’t need to be an expert cook, all you need to do is follow these simple steps.

So let us get started. Here are the steps in making sauerkraut in a mason jar.


  • 1 head of cabbage or 2 1/2 lbs cabbage
  • 1 tablespoon of salt

Tools Needed:

  • knife
  • bowl
  • mason jar
  • smaller jar
  • rubber band

Step 1: Wash & Clean the Tools & Ingredients

Wash all the equipment and utensils you need. Wash your hands too.

You don’t want to mix your sauerkraut with bad bacteria, anything that is going to make you sick.

Next, remove the faded leaves from your cabbage. Cut off the roots and the parts that don’t seem fresh.

Step 2: Cut the Cabbage Into Quarters & Slice Into Strips

Cut your cabbage into quarters and remove the core. Then, slice it into strips.

Step 3: Place in a Bowl & Sprinkle With Salt

Put the stripped cabbage into a bowl. Sprinkle the cabbage with 1 tablespoon of salt.

TIP: Use canning salt or sea salt. Iodized salt will make it taste different and may not ferment the cabbage.

RELATED: Homemade Yogurt Recipe

Step 4: Massage the Cabbage

Massage the cabbage for five minutes or more to get the juice out.

TIP: You’ll know it’s ready when you see a bit of juice at the bottom of the bowl and will look similar to coleslaw.

Step 5: Press Cabbage Into the Mason Jar

Add the cabbage to the mason jar gradually. Press it in hard to allow the juice to come out. Do this every time you add about a handful of cabbage.

IMPORTANT: Food should be covered by the liquid to promote fermentation. Add any excess liquid from the bowl to the jar.

Step 6: Press a Smaller Jar Into the Mason Jar

You want to squeeze every ounce of that juice from the cabbage. To do this place the mason jar in a bowl and get a smaller jar.

Fill it with water or marble to make it heavy. Press it into the bigger mason jar. Allow any juices to rise to the surface.

Step 7: Cover the Jars With Cloth & Tie With Rubber Band

Leave the small jar on. To keep your jars clean from annoying insects and irritating debris, cover your jars with a clean cloth. Then, use a rubber band to tie the cloth and the jars together, putting them in place.

Step 8: Set Aside & Check Daily

Set it aside in a cool dry place, away from direct sunlight. Check the water level daily. It should always be above the cabbage.

Step 9: Taste Your Sauerkraut & Keep at Cool Temperatures

Homemade Sauerkraut Cumin Juniper | How To Make Lacto-Fermented Sauerkraut In A Mason Jar

After about five days, you can taste your sauerkraut. If the taste is to your liking, tightly cover it with the lid and store in the fridge or cellar.

NOTE: If after five days it’s still not your desired taste, leave it for a few more days. This will allow the fermentation process to continue.

You can now enjoy your sauerkraut in a mason jar. Enjoy its goodness! You can use it as a side dish or mix it with your favorite sandwich.

Things to Remember in Making Sauerkraut

  • Store away from direct sunlight and drafts.
  • Colder weather will make the process longer. Spring is the best time to make them since the warmth helps activate the fermentation.
  • Always make sure that the cabbage is below the water level during the entire fermentation process.
  • If the water level decreases during the fermentation process, you can make a brine and add it.

Let us watch this video from Kristina Seleshanko on how to make delicious Lacto-fermented sauerkraut in a mason jar!

So there you have it! Making Lacto-fermented sauerkraut in a mason jar is as easy as slicing the cabbage into strips. Remember that as long it remains unopened, your sauerkraut can last for months. Best of all, you can partner this sauerkraut in many recipes.

What do you think of this homemade recipe? Share your best sauerkraut recipe in the comments section below!

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Self Sufficiency


Having plants in the house will bring peace to people. Having a little garden with vegetables is even better! You can grow these vegetables in your backyard garden easily as well!

RELATED: Microgreens Growing Guide

In this article:

  1. Tomato
  2. Eggplant
  3. Beet
  4. Spinach
  5. Pea
  6. Carrot
  7. Radish
  8. Cauliflower
  9. Asparagus

Growing veggies in your garden will give you an opportunity to understand what you eat and value it more. Early spring is when most vegetables are being planted. Keep reading to learn about 9 spring vegetables that anyone can grow in their garden!


Tomato is the most popular garden vegetable in the States! There are different varieties to choose from. Tomatoes need to be planted in early spring because they won’t survive a frost.

Because tomatoes are consumed daily, try adding them to your garden! They’re not difficult to grow either.


Eggplants are known to have low-calorie, vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Plus, they are delicious! So why not plant them in your garden?

Eggplants shouldn’t be planted too early because they won’t be able to survive a frost. So you could consult an expert in your area before you plant your eggplants.


Beets are known to be a superfood for its various health benefits. They’re easier to grow in the garden, usually around late March or early April.

If the weather is always cool, beets will keep getting bigger and bigger. Once the weather starts to warm up, you’ll need to harvest them, or they’ll go to waste.


Spinach is a delicious early spring veggie, and it’s also very beneficial for health. And it’s not difficult to grow spinach in your garden!

Spinach needs cold weather to grow. Getting spinach to grow is easy, but keeping it growing will require some extra care.


Peas are usually planted in late April. Peas will die in freezing temperatures, but they also won’t survive the heat either. So make sure you plant your peas in early spring.

Peas are widely used in many different ways, and there are different types of peas. The soil you’ll be planting your peas should be suitable for them, so make sure you ask while buying seeds.


There are different types of carrots, but regardless of their size and color, it’s a fact that carrots are both delicious and rich in vitamins.

They’re root vegetables, so with proper sun and watering, they can be picked up as baby carrots as well.


A radish is an excellent option for beginners because it doesn’t require too much care. Radish is easy to harvest.

Radish grows fast, so it’s better to keep an eye on it after a few weeks. Radish usually is grown pest-free, but there’s always the chance of unwanted guests, so watch out for worms. Radish can be eaten raw or can be added to garnish recipes.


Cauliflower isn’t the easiest vegetable to grow at home, but it is very popular.

Cauliflower grows better in colder weather, so before you plant it, consider the climate of your garden. Cauliflower can be eaten raw or cooked, and it is known to be very beneficial for health.


Freshly picked, tender asparagus is very delicious!

Asparagus plants get more productive with each harvest, and mature asparagus harvest can last for months! Make sure you plant them at the correct time, or else they might go to waste.

All the vegetables listed above are great for your healthy diet, and it’s fun to watch them grow. So don’t miss out on the opportunity to grow your own veggies and eat healthy this spring!

So tell us which veggies will you be growing this spring? Tell us in the comments section!




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