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Cattle - when to run!

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The other topic about cattle got me thinking...


In the summer we were walking and the track we wanted to follow was gated and had bulls, cows and calves on the other side. The bulls glared at us and the cows watched us and the calves were just cute.


Now I like farm animals, I stop to talk to sheep and the cows and even rub the ears of some friendly pigs we passed. Not having been brought up with animals (except chickens) I don't know the proper terms or manner of them.


The field with the cattle in we did not cross. We didn't want to alarm the animals especially when there were calves. You also hear of people being chased and trampled, although we did not have a dog with us.


So, is it safe to cross a field with cows/bulls? How would you know if they were getting upset with you? When is the time to run?

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So, is it safe to cross a field with cows/bulls? How would you know if they were getting upset with you? When is the time to run?


Probably it is safe, although I would be wary of going among unfamiliar cows with young calves. Bulls are probably safer, although I would not trust them either. They will usually give you some warning by snorting, throwing their heads around, pawing the ground etc. If they are moving rapidly towards you, possibly with all 4 feet off the ground, they might be angry at you or they might just want to play(!) Running is probably not a good idea, they are much quicker than you, and if you start running they might be inclined to chase you. It is easy to say this, but not so easy to do it. Stand your ground. Wave your arms and shout to make the cow(s) stop - they usually will before they actually mow you down, except if it is a cow protecting its calf. Never go among cows with a dog. If you are out with a dog and unexpectedly encounter cows you should let the dog off the lead, and hope that it doesn't hide behind you for protection!

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So, is it safe to cross a field with cows/bulls?

With my cow and ox on the field it's NOT SAFE for anybody they don't know.


How would you know if they were getting upset with you?

You would definitely notice...


When is the time to run?

Never! Whether they want to play with you or to chase you they will always be faster (and stronger) than you.

And I doubt that a 700kg cow stops in time once you wave your arms and shout... if she wants to play (or if she's in the "mood") she will just ignore this.


The best weapon ever invented is the good old waterpistol. It doesn't heart at all and keeps even a 2 year old cheeky ox who wants to play with you in a safe distance.


To be honest: I can't really see the point why one would ever want to enter a field with grazing animals unless you are the owner of the animals.

On the Bavarian "Almen" happen so many bad accidents each year so best advice is to stay on the roads, paths etc. and outside the fenced grazings.


My animals (also the horses) hunt each and every stranger. Since wolves are returning to Bavaria I am glad that they also hunt dogs if they come through the fence.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I can mind walking through a field down south with my boyfriend as he was then and his dog, we'd walked that field before and never had a problem, this day the Friesan cows in the field got curious and started to move towards us, we had tried not to attract their attention by walking at the side of the field as we'd done on a regular basis, there was even a worn out path there that was frequently used by locals to get to the cliff tops, we noticed that the herd had picked up speed and were running towards us, so we did them same and ran towards the fence at the bottom of the field, the dog was terrified and on reaching the fence we picked him up and chucked him over, quickly following him.


That was the first time we ever had any problem walking through a field of cows with a dog, there were no calves or we would never have gone into the field in the first place, never did it again, way to scary, they're much bigger than me. :shock: If you do it be aware, and have an escape route planned

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