We had to dry Cookie cow off for the move from Arizona to Wisconsin and now that we’re here… we are all going through milk withdrawal! Cookie has had over four months to acclimate and is doing very well. We decided it was time for her to have a friend come and visit. The man we bought hay from has a nice size herd of beef cattle and said he had a few too many bulls now that everyone has bred their cows. He offered to bring a young one over for a few months to visit Cookie in hopes that we’d keep him all winter.
As bulls go… he’s as sweet as can be! That being said… HE IS STILL A BULL! We are very mindful of where he is when we are feeding, mucking stalls and scooping poop in the pasture. We have two paddocks and a cross fence between the arena and the big pasture. If we are doing anything that requires focus… we lock up the bull first.
I wasn’t always so aware of bull behavior. About four years ago I had a bull come to visit the girls and one day when I let them in for milking, he darted in right with them. In the confusion of two hungry cows full of milk and a feisty bull, I was pinned up against a metal gate and couldn’t move out of the way. The bull had stepped on the toe of my boot and I was unable to move my foot at all, let alone get away from his head. Luckily he was naturally polled so he didn’t have the horns with which to skewer me, but he did pound me into that gate a few times before I was able to get a hold of a shovel and thump him in the head to back off! It took some time to heal my lower back from that pounding and I’m thankful it wasn’t a more serious injury. Bulls are necessary for those who choose not to go the artificial insemination route and an ounce of knowledge is worth it’s weight in gold!!!!
When it’s time to breed the cow, don’t be afraid of having a bull come to visit. Instead, I’d urge you to plan ahead. Have pens available to lock the bull into so you can spend time with your cow and clean up without having to have a ‘look out’. Being safe and planning ahead will make the process a fond experience. Now, it’s time for me to go and lock up our visiting bull and clean up some poop!!! Wishing you all a great Sunday.
Happy Homesteading !!!!