Grit Blogs > There and Back Again

What About Those Rotten Cows?

Paula Ebert headshotI mentioned that I’m not overly fond of cows, steers, bulls or what-have you. When I first came to the farm, I started out with good intentions. I know and love horses, but we have none of those, just cows, etc. How hard could it be?

It seems like the second my husband is away, the beasts decide that it is time to escape. We live off of a very busy road, particularly in the afternoon, as the local students go to and from the school just up the road, and busses and such go by. You know how some stories get funnier in retrospect? Well, this isn’t one of them.

One day, just as I’d returned home from work and before I’d changed out of my “dress up clothes,” I look up to see cows booking it down the lane at a rather rapid trot. We have a cousin in the area who is assigned to look out after me when my husband is away, although no one would necessarily phrase it that way. I picked up the phone called him, begging for help, and ran out of the house. I didn’t know that my little dog followed me.

Picture this: I’m running down the lane in a dress, as two cows head out onto the road. I’m waiving my arms and trying to stop traffic before they run over the cows, who are standing in the road, with stupid bovine looks on their faces. They dash toward the bridge over a small creek, and I’m thinking if they get over the bridge, I’ve lost them for good. I’m running as hard as I can and I head them off before they get over the bridge and they are now running down the barrow ditch. It’s now time for the school busses to start whizzing by and they do. Thankfully, a fellow stops and sees my distress, and offers to help with the cows, just as I look up and my little dog, evidently tired of waiting for me, is now in the middle of the road trying to come to my aid!

All thoughts of the cows are gone, as I run toward the dog, telling the poor blind and deaf dog to go home!!! Then, I look up and I see the cousin’s wife, Kay, on her way to save me … With the aid of the fellow who has now abandoned his car by the side of the road, the wife and this fellow manage to lure the cows back into the corral. But because they had to open the gate, I can’t figure out how they got out.

Further investigation, after Cousin Tom arrived, we discover deer probably knocked down an electric fence, and the cows were just strolling out. Fence fixed. My husband returns from a trip out west, just in time to miss all the action. Months later, I met a woman who told me she’d tried to stop traffic on the road that day. “Oh, that was you in the dress.” She just smiles.

Stupid cows.  

mother and newborn calf
mary carton
12/22/2011 2:11:37 AM

My Dad liked to use electric fences. We had one bull who would stick it's nose close to the fence and if he didn't feel a pulse would break out into the field we had the heifers in. Guess who had to round them up each time? Us kids, not Dad.


nebraska dave
11/15/2011 6:59:02 PM

Paula, farm life is interesting. Isn't it? I don't miss having farm animals to tend. They just don't do well when left on their own for a couple weeks nor do they like to go without water for food. Chickens were kind of pain in the neck, cows always seemed to be needy, but hogs they were the king of the farm. In my humble opinion hogs are the best problem solvers on the farm. Gardening is much more my speed. Set up some automatic watering, deep mulch the garden beds, and take the summer off until harvest. Now that's my kind of farming. Have a great cowgirl day. P.S. The new farm addition is a cutey. Isn't she/he?