Wild Creek Ranch
Pasture Raised Chickens, & Amazing Fertile Eggs
Naturally Raised, No Hormones, No Antibiotics, Salmon Safe, &
A Full Service Veterinary Clinic in Naselle, WA
Specializing in Compassionate Small Animal Care
We live in a wild place and raise animals and children. There is no place we would rather live and we don't want to change it. We love this place because it is wild and wild animals live here, including coyote, bear, bobcat, cougar, raccoons, and eagles. They are the true managers of this land and deserve the credit for the abundant and healthy wildlife that defines it. With that said, we still don't want to be managed by predators. The safety of our family and animals is of course of paramount importance to us.
We raise Katahdin sheep for meat. Katahdin are a wonderful breed of sheep that shed their wool, needing no shearing or tail docking, and are excellent at controlling brush. We graze them in many remote pastures around our farm. We do not feed grain (although they do get 'treats' to help with herding them), allowing them to graze on natural sources of food. We rarely give medications and we do not dock tails or castrate male lambs. We believe that raising sheep in this way results in happier and healthier animals. We believe that this way of taking care of them produces meat that is healthier for us as well as more caring for them.
We also raise heirloom layer chickens. We have a wide variety of chickens that produce many different colors of eggs. We raise them naturally, allowing them the run of the farm to feed on bugs and plants with their roosters. We've selected for gentle roosters and we find that they take good care of their hens, finding food for them and watching for trouble. We do supplement their diet with chicken food and lots of kitchen scraps. We believe, and our customers tell us, that the eggs our chickens produce are the best they've ever eaten with tall, deep orange yolks. Nothing compares to a fresh pasture raised egg.
With the way we raise our animals, protection from predators is a critical issue.
The Kangal Dog
To mediate this relationship, we are privileged to have Turkish Livestock Guardian Dogs called Kangals that live with us. Kangal Dogs are a rare and ancient breed from Turkey, bred for thousands of years to do the job we ask of them today, protect flock and family. They are a mastiff type breed that is tall and fast like a greyhound, distinct from 'Turkish Mastiffs' and any other breed. The wisdom and abilities of the original Turkish breeders to produce such a dog is truly impressive to me. They frequently weigh well over 130 lbs. and are energetic, strong, fast dogs. They are a loving but independent breed that understand their job and need no commands about how to do it, nor do they always accept them if given. There is no other dog like a Kangal.
In our opinion, most Kangal dogs need to live in a working environment, preferably with sheep or other flock livestock, on large acreage. As great as these dogs are and as much as we want to see them in more homes, most do not make good 'pets'. They are very powerful dogs and typically do best with lots of room, a job to do, and a handler that understands how to take care of them. However as with any animal, individuals have different personalities and some Kangal dogs do very well living as 'pets', so don't despair, it's possible to own a Kangal without owning livestock.
For the best source of information about the Kangal Dog, visit the Kangal Dog Club of America website at www.kangalclub.com. The Club serves as the biggest champion of our breed in the U.S. I am proud to be a member of the Club and serve as a member of the Board of Directors.
We raise Kangal dogs to protect our ranch and out of true love for the breed. Some of our dogs descend from rare Turkish lines that replenish the small gene pool that exists. We imported two female dogs from outstanding working lines in Turkey to ensure that our breed continued to produce healthy pups. We believe we will breed our dogs to build our pack over the next few years. Occasionally there may be some pups available to qualified homes.
Qualities of a Working Kangal Dog
Kangal dogs are registered in the U.S. by the United Kennel Club. The UKC has established the official 'Standard' for the breed. This can be seen at http://www.ukcdogs.com/WebSite.nsf/Breeds/KangalDog. In addition to these traits, after discussing what defines an exceptional working Kangal with owners around the world, we believe that Kangal Dogs should also exhibit the following characteristics.
1. Trustworthy with livestock when mature - low prey drive; appropriate activity level for their age and job; maternal or protective behavior towards other species.
2. Protective of their livestock - suspicious of unfamiliar intruders or changes in the environment; courageous and confident enough to be willing to physically defend their flock.
3. Form cooperative bond with their working pack, other inhabitants of their home, and their handlers - should be able to work with other non-competing dogs; recognize and be friendly with animals and people that reside with them or visit regularly; and form a working relationship with their handlers that includes responding to commands.
4. Attentive to their livestock - remain with stock, and/or be curious about and alert to changes in the environment.
5. Intelligent - problem solvers; balance survival with defense of flock and property; discern between real and apparent threats.
6. Independent - can make decisions on their own when necessary.
Here are some photos of our dogs and our farm.
Banks Mt. Farm’s Zeki Pazari (Pazar)(His Lineage), our gentle giant boy at age 2. Pazar was our first Kangal and will always hold a special place in our hearts. He has matured and become a gentle, loving dog, while being the strongest, most agile and athletic dog we've ever known. Pazar can leap a 6' fence from a dead standstill, gain speeds of up to 30 mph or better, and turn on a dime at top speed. He does this while weighing 130 lbs and standing with his head 45" high. He is also extremely alert and works hard 24 hours a day, watching and responding to anything out of the ordinary on the farm. He has an amazing 'measured response' to what he sees, barking and posturing ferociously if a coyote comes into the farm, but will only offer a lazy woof to the UPS man. His name in Turkish means "brilliant sun", a name which he has fulfilled.
Zarif (‘Z’), our Turkish girl, age 8 months (Her Lineage). Z has a calm, mature, personality already as a pup and shows great affection for her sheep. She is proving to be an exceptional guardian even at her very young age. She is also very well mannered with people and takes commands better than most Kangal dogs I've known. Typically these dogs mature slowly and are not considered to be mature enough to work as full time guardians until age 2 or older. Z is a very special dog. Her name means "elegant' in Turkish, which describes her perfectly.
This kind of devotion to flock is what we strive for in our dogs.
Reise and Sorbonne
July 15, 2009
We are happy to introduce two new members to our Kangal family.
Reise, a 11 year old male born in Turkey and Sorbonne, a 11 year old female born in France came to us as part of a rehoming sponsored by the KDCA Rescue Program. The original owner became ill and was no longer able to take care of these two dogs that had lived most of their lives together. We were thrilled with the chance to be able to provide them a home on our farm. Their owner and the KDCA sponsored the fare for bring them to us and now they live in the 'left pasture' at Bone River.
Reise is an intact male from Turkey, and a 'love hound'. He does anything he can to get some affection and is very gentle. Even at his age, Reise is fast and walks on his toes with a good bounce in his step. He is also very vigilant and has made himself useful right away barking at coyotes.
Sorbonne is HUGE. She is a very large and beautiful Kangal. She's also a lover and speaks to us to ask for attention whenever we approach her.
And, its clear that Reise and Sorbonne love each other, so they will continue to be the 'left flank' team for us.