After all the research you did and finally settling on the best cattle to bring home to your farm, comes the fun parts: getting things ready to go prior to their arrival, and getting them accustomed to their new home and new owner[s].
It's hard not to think about proper stockmanship as something akin to a dance. There's a lot of give-and-take involved, and in most cases, both parties enjoy each other's company, flowing and moving cohesively as one.
In this second instalment of the two part series How to Safely Work with Cattle, I move away from the "human mind" part of the proper stockmanship equation, where I talked about the different negative perceptions and emotions a person might have when working with cattle, and how to get over them. Here we shift into the fun part of being the "bovine interpreter," if you will, where we look more at the "bovine mind" part of the stockmanship equation.
One of the biggest aspects of raising cattle, besides feeding them and crunching the numbers in the name of keeping financial records and doing annual income tax paper work, is that direct interaction--and dare I say relationship--between the person caring for the cattle and the cattle themselves.
For most of those who grew up around cows and think they "know" cows, this is something that's always taken for granted. But for the novice cow-keepers that are bringing home their first bovine[s] that they worked so hard to find? Talk about intimidating! Just how does a first-time cow owner get over their fears as well as some negative perceptions, and begin the life-long process of learning to work well with their first bovines? I may have a few of those answers below.
As silly as this may seem, one of the most important and absolutely crucial things to know with regards to keeping and raising cattle is this:
Telling, not to mention fully memorizing, the differences between cows, bulls, heifers and steers.
What a fun endeavour to get into! Raising cows and cattle for milk, for meat, for just keeping the grass down, or even just to have one as a pet because you like cows so much (bless your heart), is one of the most rewarding, trying, frustrating and fun experiences you can have in your life. There's much to get into keeping cows, so let's dive in.
Range Nerd, Forage & Grazing Fanatic and a Bovine Enthusiast. A love for farming, and for the soil.
This is a specialty "farmers/ranchers only" section where I share and expound on the various tips, tricks, and information on how to raise cows and cattle, from feeding and grazing to breeding, to handling and keeping them healthy. This blog is for anyone who wants to raise cows, or are already doing so!