Every year there is news coverage about the running of the bulls in Spain, where thrill seekers flock to Spain to run with the bulls. I am willing to bet no cattle rancher in the United States makes a special trip to Spain to run with the bulls. Ranchers have plenty of trouble with bulls at home to bother with a trip to Spain.
If you have bulls, you know something about repairing corrals, gates, or anything else bulls love to wreck. Your bulls may appear to be peace loving fellows much of the year, but in the spring they tend to decide they are gladiators and are often on the fight. Their best friend through the winter is now a chap they can’t stand the sight of and they start sparring. Holes are dug in the ground with their front feet and they bellow something in bull language that means something like, “The girls think you are a wimp,” and the fight is on.
Bulls seem to like the job they are designed to do and most of them like to get to work in the spring. I rode out to check my cows recently and lo and behold a bull I thought was in a pen at home was out there already. No longer interested in early calving, I was not happy to see him out there, and with a little luck and a fair horse, I got him back home and put him in a better pen.
One hour later he was strolling through the yard making his way back to the girls. Of course he tore down a good wire gate in the process. After repairing the gate and setting up a couple panels to make it more secure I put him back in the small pasture.
Ferdinand paced back and forth in frustration for a few days, but I thought he would stay in. A few days later as I picked up the mail I saw bull spoor on the road, then looking further I saw a flash or red as he passed the Sims church and headed up the hill. (I have read so many African hunting books I couldn’t resist using that word).
He had a good head start on me and by the time I caught a horse and caught up to him he was two miles away in my neighbor’s yard.
With incredible good luck I drove him home without him going through any fences. This time he was placed in a maximum security prison until it was time to turn him out.
Bulls are always a problem, especially in this certain time of year.
Many years ago my Dad had a Hereford bull he called Wendolyn. I think Wendolyn was an average kind of bull for a couple years, but one year Wendolyn decided he had had enough of women. Dad turned Wendolyn and the other bulls out with the cows one summer and to Dad’s surprise Wendolyn was back at home the next day. He chased him back out to the pasture again, but Wendolyn soon made his way back home.
Disgusted, Dad made another attempt to put him out and made sure he was with a bunch of cows. He took care of his horse and sat down in the house with a cup of coffee.
He had a clear view of the road through the window as he sipped his coffee. It wasn’t long until Wendolyn came strolling back down the road. Wendolyn stood and carefully studied our mailbox for a while, then dropped his head and charged, completely destroying the mailbox.
Wendolyn never had to go back out with the cows again.