They say, “Curiosity killed the cat.” They say, “Cows are stupid animals.” They say, “Put down old tires by the fence. Cows won’t step on them.” Who the heck is ‘they’ anyway? Whoever ‘they’ are, it’s obvious they have never owned an animal in their life, much less cows.
In our never ending fence battle, the Country Boy and I spent the better part of the day setting up to repair fence. The cows stepped right on over and in the tires we had laid down to keep them off of it, and pushed and shoved until they knocked the fence loose. They also studied the situation closely, and realized one of the posts holding the gate in place was rotten. They then proceeded to push and shove until the post finally snapped. All because they knew the sack feed was in that big brown Thing on the other side of the fence, not to mention all that tender juicy green future cud in the patch between the fence and the big brown Thing. In human terms, that translates to determination to break out, eat the grass and bust into the barn to get to the sack feed.
One thing ‘They’ say is that good fences make good neighbors. That is one I will give them. Although George and Pam just laugh at us when our cows make a jail break (then gallantly help us get them back home again), we still consider it rude to have our animals treading all over their well-kept front lawns, flowers and shrubs. We also consider it a pain in the neck to have to go over and clean up what the bovines left behind. We happen to like George and Pam, and want to keep it that way.
So we spend the better part of our time repairing and replacing fence. This particular project is going to take a bit more time than just stretching out a strand or two of barbed-wire. We had to set up a temporary electric fence in order to tear out the existing one, re-set posts in cement and then string up new field fence. Considering it will take several days to finish this project, we won’t be removing any of the old until we are immediately ready to re-install the new. I don’t care what ‘They’ say, but my cows will figure out a way around the temporary electric fence and quickly head down the lane and over to visit George.
Even more fun is the curiosity of the cows. As soon as we opened the gate to install the temporary fencing, they all stampeded over. Initially, I think they saw the white work bucket, and thought we were going to feed them early. When they finally realized it wasn’t a load of feed or Range Cubes, their curiosity got the better of them and they started checking things out. Annabelle offered her advice on how we should install the fence, Scratcher pouted because there were no Range Cubes, and one of the calves decided he wanted to try wearing the Country Boy’s hat. It’s no wonder it takes us an extraordinary amount of time to do a simple project.
I really don’t know who ‘They’ are, but I can tell you from experience – curiosity doesn’t kill a cat – nor does it kill a cow. It just stings their noses a little bit. Cows are definitely not stupid. When I was trying to put hay out the other day, Suzabelle wanted to be belligerent and tried to head butt me. Scratcher put a quick stop to it by getting between us and pushing Suzabelle out of the way. Then she stood there until I finished, daring Suzi to come near. (Scratcher knows where her Range Cubes come from.) And old tires serve no purpose other than a bit of a jungle gym, or harboring snakes and looking like a junkyard. Cows don’t care what is in the way of getting what they want. They will step over it. Plow through it. Push it down. Pull it loose. And then eat you out of house and home.
I’m just waiting until the day they figure out the hasp on the barn. And if the fence is any indication, I only have about a week left until that happens. Sigh…