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My Cows Hate Me

February 27, 2015

Well some of them anyway.  Jane is pretty content from the looks of her noonday nap today.  She’s busy making milk.

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These guys?  Not so much.  It’s that time of year when we put them in the winter feeding shed and start building the deep bedding, while resting the wet winter pasture.  Sort of like Stockholm Syndrome, the Barn Version compared to the Mob-stocking Stockholm – Summer Version.  I try not to abuse the relationship, but I tell them “this is for your own good.”  I remember that’s what my sister used to say to me when she spanked me…I couldn’t quite figure that logic out then and I’m sure the cows are on the kid end of thinking too.

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Grass adjacent to the sacrifice area/feeding shed

Grass adjacent to the sacrifice area/feeding shed

Out of sight, out of mind doesn’t work on cattle.  They have a very strong sense of smell and they can smell the spring grass growing and they want it.  This is always the time of year I have to be on the lookout for troublemakers.  The prime candidates are my long yearling steers.  They are growing, they are young and not weighed down with nursing calves or pregnancy, and they are impulsive.  Impulsive as in, “I want that grass NOW, and I can just pop over that five foot fence!”  Of course, once one mashes down the fence everyone follows.

While I know the pasture needs its rest, this is the hardest part of rotational grazing.  Keeping the stock held back.  Fences, gates and tempers all get frayed this time of year.  I keep them plied with hay, water and minerals in hopes of keeping them content.  At least six more weeks of this before I can turn them loose.  I hope my nerves hold out!

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. CassieOz permalink
    February 27, 2015 4:38 pm

    I can’t help draw parallels with parenting Matron, lol. While I’ve never tried the ‘for your own good’ while spanking, I’m sure my (grown) kids remember something similar attached to eating greens or not going to a wild party or some such. Hang in there!

    • February 27, 2015 4:52 pm

      How about “this hurts me more than it hurts you.” I think the cows might listen a little better 😉

      • CassieOz permalink
        February 28, 2015 3:48 pm

        Oh yeah, I remember THAT one…

  2. CassieOz permalink
    February 27, 2015 4:49 pm

    Oops I forgot. Regards to the lovely Lady Jane.

    • February 27, 2015 4:53 pm

      Spoiled princess she is – we’re back in the wet, so she’s back in the barn at night and loving every minute of it. Me not so much, I was getting used to no daily stall mucking :p

  3. February 28, 2015 10:22 am

    I think we must have the same problem. Our next to youngest alpaca has taken to racing around and seems to want to be off out of the paddock. The older two ladies are quite content to have hay on tap and not worry about trailing off looking for grass, which is appearing now. Bit early for ours to be out and about yet too, we could get more snow yet.

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