bother with more than a shotgun, or a 22, anywhere on the place. the FIRST shot sends dogs fleeing, and hitting them on the fly, with a rifle, aint all that likely, beyond buckshot ranges, anyway. Either gun suffices to put sick or injured animals out of their misery, and so will a decent sidearm. So much for any 'need" of 223 auto as a "ranch gun". sks will suffice just fine, and costs a LOT less than a Mini-14 does. Due to the really poor accuracy of the Mini, in many cases, at least, the sks has about as much effective range, too. The .30 AK practice rd costs about half what decent 223 ammo costs, too.Since neither wt nor bulk are issues for a "truck gun", why have $450 of Mini-14 at risk, when you can have $150 of sks in the truck, hmm? The thief is LESS likely to take the sks, too. He can't get more than $75 for it, while he can easily get $250 for the Mini-14.