Maggie is extremely intelligent..........not just dog intelligent........but people type of intelligence. (those who have owned many dogs probably know what I mean by that) Sometimes this is not such a good thing.........as when she hears a pill bottle open and knows it's for her.........or when she flat out refuses to come inside because she wants to stay out and play like a little kid............or when easy child can't even spell the word bye........because Maggie has already caught on to spelling certain words. I have a bluejay couple in my backyard. I spotted their nest long before the leaves became full up in the higher branches of my maple tree in my backyard. I'm an odd person. I've talked to them most of the season when I'm outside. I also happen to have a cardinal couple nesting in the pine tree next to that maple..........and that makes for some interesting bird drama. lol Seems yesterday mom and dad bluejay decided their chicks were old enough to fly and started booting them out of the nest. Chick 1 Travis saw drop like a rock out of the tree near where he was swing blading some elephant ear plants (I hate those things they take over your yard). He come running in to get me because he was afraid the chick had fallen out of the nest. I came out, looked at it, and explained to him that said chick was ready to fly and mom and dad would be nearby and if he wasn't careful he could find himself attacked by them. I refused to pick up or "help" said chick.......even though Travis thought I was being mean. I have plenty of experience with both wild and domesticated birds. I knew the baby was fine as long and neither the cats or dogs bothered it. Mom and dad would keep encouraging until he got the idea. Quite some time later it seemed the chick was no longer in the yard. Dogs had to potty and I had to get supper on the grill. Low and behold said chick was NOT gone and of course Maggie found it immediately. She got the command BABY! and backed off immediately. But would not leave it alone......stayed near although she didn't bother it. Rufus......at 9 wks......of course wanted to see what was going on so up he struts (yes, he literally struts) to check out the chick. He sniffs (chick is not running or flapping to escape either of them) wags his little tail and proceeds to lick it to show it how nice he is. lol Mom and Dad bird are swooping but not attacking as chick is not calling out in alarm. But I return the dogs to the house thinking to keep the chick safe and reduce the anxiety for the parent birds. Dogs can't stay in forever, especially not mine. Couple hours later it is playtime in the yard. I check and can't find the chick. So I let the dogs out. Again Maggie finds it immediately. She winds up "herding" it into the fenced garden, but not before midnight the cat comes to check it out. Midnight sniffed the chick, rubbed up against it and walked away. Once the chick was safely in the garden fence Maggie kept an eye on it but went on about playing. Dad bluejay came sqwalking up to us more than once as if asking where his chick was. I kept telling him that the chick was in the garden and he needed to keep better track of his babies. I swear he was acting like your typical husband who had lost a child and was fearing the wrath of his wife. But he did find the chick in the garden. Turned out there were 2 of them in there. We watched the parents encourage. It was pretty cool to see the chicks get the hang of it. So this morning........I'm thinking all is well chicks have learned to fly and are safe. Let the dogs out without thinking much about it. I start hearing the jays again. Rufus cries to come inside and I think Uh, oh! So I bring Rufus in. I can't get Maggie to come inside. (typical) And jays are no longer fussing. I go out a while later...........and well by now I know Maggie's stance when it comes to the baby chicks. She's "guarding one" . Mom and Dad jay are swooping but seem to understand Maggie has no intention of harming the chick........she is trying to protect it and figure out what the heck to do with it. omg (only MY dog) It took forever...........and me sitting literally right on top of the chick........to get her to come close enough for me to take her collar so I could bring her inside. She was taking her job to protect the "baby" literally. I told her what a good girl she is and gave her plenty of praise. Not once........not a single time did she put her mouth on the chicks or attempt to harm or play with them. Maggie is currently miffed at me because she has to stay in the house. lol Don't get me wrong, Maggie loves to flush game..........especially birds. But this was a 'baby" and therefore off limits for such games. Rufus is just a baby himself and was hoping for a new playmate. lol I did think it odd that midnight seemed uninterested other than curiosity over the baby birds. Yet she'll attack and kill a snake instantly.