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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
After splits, and swarm captures this year, we hope to push our Apiary out to accommodate upwards of 16 hives Next year we hope to a accommodate a maximum of 30 Hives. The Apiary is about 60 to 70 yards behind our house.
Last fall my wife rescued a most wonderful year old shepherd mix from the SPCA. My intent is to put her dog house 10 yards outside our back door, in between the house, garage, and apiary. In watching her try to attack flies, she is most focused on that task you see, so I worry a bit about summer days where the bees will be on the lawn in her area, particularly during a dearth.
My concern, obviously with all these hives, is how dramatic of the risk is it to her health during the course of a nice summer day. I recently read here on Beesource of a dog dying by getting stung too many times from a swarm of bees, so my question is how confident are you folks out there with your dogs around your bees?
Should I rethink the placement of our Bee yard???
 

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My dog also snaps at flies but has learned not to do so with bees. He also doesn't go in front of the hives.

I expect the use of the word "swarm" to be used correctly in this forum.

I wouldn't worry too much.
 

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I suspect that the dog stung to death by bees was dealing with some Africanized bees, not hived Europeans. If she is not messing around with the hive box directly, I don't think she will have to deal with any great numbers of them. One point of conflict might be water, I would set up a water source for the bees, far away from her area - before you set her up with her water dish. Dogs quickly learn to not snap at bees, or they develop the "snap and flick" technique to avoid being stung so much. That is what my dog does now. He generally stays out of the bee yard and knows to stay away from me when I have my suit on, but if I come in without a suit with a bee on me, he feels I need rescueing and will use the snap & flick technique. After they are dead, he finds them quite delicious.
 

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I was worried about my wifes dog last year a golden retriever. She used to jump up at bees flying in front of the hives and follow me to do the inspections.

She got stung a few times and her nose swelled up a little last year.

Yesterday I made a split and inspected some strong colonies and the dog stayed away the whole time

As long as the dog isn't locked in a kennel next to a hive and can run around to escape the bees if they pester it I believe they will be fine.
 

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My dogs used to come to the hives with me, but they soon learned better. Once she gets stung a few times, she'll figure it out. It's been said here, but I highly doubt your dog is in much danger of getting stung to death by European bees.

Dogs are a lot tougher than people give them credit for.
 

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As long as the dog isn't locked in a kennel next to a hive and can run around to escape the bees if they pester it I believe they will be fine.
I knew a beekeeper who lost his three hounds because they were attacked by his bees. The beekeeper was harvesting honey with the dogs chained at their dog houses in the same yard as the bees. The dogs died because they couldn't run away. This was years before the AHB came to North America.
 

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Michael, wow. So it sounds as if he should put her in the house or other beesafe structure during harvest or other "rile up the girls" activity, if she is going to be chained.

JC
 

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The first year with hives my dog would lay in the grass and watch me work the hives. He would bite at any bees buzzing around his head. He got stung more than once.

Now, he heads indoors whenever I pull out my bee suit or start lighting my smoker.

As long as your dog is able to get away from the bees, he will be fine.
 
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