Friday, June 15, 2012
From a week ago... I had put on Facebook. Cows. People here and there will know my feelings towards these creatures. In the later part of my walk yesterday around Cheddar I had to walk through a field of cows. I often pass cows only. This field was quite full of cows and calves. We are all warned about cows with calves. My venture trough this field proves that if you respect them, stand your ground, don't panic and are firm!, you will be fine! Common sense told me to walk around the outside of the field and simply try to bypass them all. Sorry, but I "own" that field and I wanted them to know it. So the only concession I made to that field of cows and calves off my normal path was 20 feet, to the right of a tree, rather than the left of it. That saved me from passing between a cow and her calf. That you do NOT do. This did not prevent a couple or three of them approaching or showing a passing interest. I kept my eye open, I was very alert and I was VERY firm! I did not talk to them, but I did give single grunt commands. This stopped every one in its tracks, before it had even moved a foot. Only one came right up to me - I could see her approach from the rear, so I stopped (I did not want her following me), stood my ground, kept Bess under control - the cow sniffed my walking pole (she had moved three feet - I say that as I passed her by three feet or so!). She stopped before me and did not move an inch (my pole was wet from her nose - I hold both poles in one hand in front of me) as I moved away with Bess. I passed through the rest of the herd and not a one moved to approach Bess and I. My advise is to walk around them, but if they approach, do NOT run and do not "talk" to them. Whilst my heart did take one extra beat, a cow sniffing your pole will do that, I had no doubts whatsoever that they would do Bess and I no harm. And they didn't, they carried on eating, we carried on walking. They were nothing more than curious. We respected each other. Simple. Why do I keep Bess on the lead? Simple, it is easier to control the situation before it gets out of hand. Cows chasing Bess across a field is getting out of hand (I say getting as I have successfully put a halt to that in the past - I know they say don't get between a herd of charging cows and your dog - but if you do and you are FIRM they stop!) anyway, like I say prevention is better than cure! I just wanted to put my thoughts here as cows get a bit of a bad press with walkers and dogs.