How many times have you sat at a cattle auction and held back from buying a cow because she acted crazy in the ring? Maybe not even crazy, but a little high-headed? Thought to yourself… I don’t want her to disrupt the whole herd at home, I’ll let her go despite the great, discounted price.
Well, not us. We like to buy them! Not always… but you can definitely find some diamonds in the rough. From our own experience being on the other side of the equation: selling a cow that was fine at home but acts up in the ring- we understand that a different environment and style of handling can result in a temperamental response in the sale ring.
Find a Bargain and Train Your Horse= Win/Win
Great discounts can be found and there’s a profit to be made in this situation. Cows that act up in the ring are sold at a discount. Even half price of similar stock. We’ve purchased bred heifers for 50-60% of the group she was sorted off of. She’ll have a calf with the same breeding and genetics on the same dates as her pen mates. She just wasn’t as agreeable on sale day. I joke that we don’t just train horses, we could train cows too. Not exactly the same, but a little human interaction, or even horse interaction, can do wonders for a wild cow.
It is possible that she’ll never come out of it. Oh well, can’t get your horse broke on a gentle cow that just stands and looks at you. Give us a challenge. But more likely she’ll calm down once she’s become accustomed to her new home and surroundings.
Not only do good fences make good neighbors, but they also are critical when dealing with new cattle purchases.
You’ll also want to have good fences. Keeping a cow in a smaller lot for a few days to judge her behavior is also a good option. But don’t keep her by herself for long. If you’ve found yourself with a cow that’s looking for a way out, surround her with cows that know the ropes- where to get feed and water and come when they’re called. She’ll most likely follow the herd.
This featured family started out as a discounted bred heifer. Now a few months later, the pair likes to take selfies with me! Success! We found a “home for crazy”- ours.
I don’t recommend anyone endangering themselves. There is a risk associated with this practice. You can attempt to judge the cow in the ring. Being high-headed and looking for a way out is a different indicator than trying to KILL a ring man. Wild and crazy doesn’t always equal mean. Having a cow run from you is frustrating, but not the same as having her run AT you.