I rode out this morning in the wind to see if I could kick some pairs out of the drop bunch or maybe some across the road that we kicked out yesterday.. I rode up west and set my gates and there they were! 5 pairs laying and chewing their cud just wanting to cross the road… real simple deal… right? I slipped around them, the calves all got up. The mama’s took their calves and headed out… all but one, no big deal, I will get these first 4 and come back for her… get them all across and they take off in a trot… all but one calf.. and he’s real stoopid! I finally catch him, tie two legs together with my piggin’ string and leave him lay…. lope north, find his mother and bring her back.. she finds him and almost won’t let me get off my horse to untie him.. I get him loose and head out south again.. I see three cows by the springs and go to them, but they ain’t got no calves with them… so I belier like a calf in distress, they throw their heads up (two of them) and head out towards where they’d left their calves lying…. on the way over to them I see a cow down in the next pasture trotting our way… yup, it’s the dummy who wasn’t sure where her calf was yesterday and when we throw them together she wasn’t real sure she wanted him.. we left them and hoped for the best.. I go let her in the right pasture, she saunters up to the other cows and her calf and don’t even look at him.. he gets up, poor skinny little bugger and tries to suck, but she pushes him off.. oh well, I wil head them north and take her home, some way.. it’s a slow trip.. but I finally get all three up here across the road.. of course none of them have ever crossed the road there or been thru’ that gate, all new cows… Tate is off cutting timbers close by and they don’t like the sound of his mill, even tho’ it’s quite a ways away.. Cindy is out there watching him (it fascinates her) I finally get one pair (the mama who don’t want her baby and her baby) thru the gate and of course they head west up the road, I get them turned back and a miracle occurs! She goes the right way! I wave wildly at Cindy with motions to get over here.. she jumps in her outfit and gets there and I holler to go set gates for me so I can pen her.. the cow beats her to the gate, turns up the fence and I get her stopped, Cindy gets the gate and I holler to go get another one.. she takes off, we go thru’, the cow misses the turn and heads north, but I get her turned in time and I holler at Cindy to open that gate! (it’s real handy to have lots of gates, never know when you’ll need one in that spot!) She ran thru’ another gate that was open and I didn’t know it was. By now the calf has sold out and he’s headed east.. I shout more instructions to Cindy to get more gates open, shut one and pen the horses in the corral, out of the way… I ride up to open a wire gate and Mijo hangs his bridle on a piece of wire, jerks back and tears it apart… the cow is held up in a little trap, the calf is thru’ another fence and headed east… I lope over there, calmly approach him, moaning like his mother and he turns and follows us back… I get the cow drove back, Cindy has every thing set and the calf follows all the way to the corral. Cindy shuts the gate and I send her after the broken bridle and mention I might need some help getting this cow to let the calf suck… I get them in the big blue shed and rope the cow around the neck. She mills around and knocks down one of Chances heifers that is in there who is wobbly on her pins. I finally get her fairly short to a post, let the other cow out (her stoopid calf won’t follow) then get another rope and rope a hind leg, dally it to a post and start shortening ropes, one at a time.. Cindy shows up about half way thru’ and helps by holding and tightening one rope as I get the cow to move..Cindy is having trouble holding the rope so I send her for Tate.. he shows up and helps get her tied off and I try to get the calf to suck, but of course the cow has to fall down several times, which makes us loosen the ropes, get her to her feet and then retighten her close to the wall of the shed.. ( one of them calving stanchions just might be worth putting in, I decide) Finally get her snubbed up and the calf to sucking, I tell Tate he can go back to milling timbers and I stay with them.. Calf gets her all sucked out and I get the rope off her neck and she has decided she now LOVES this calf! But… she HATES me! I get on my horse, ride in and loosen the rope tied to her foot, and ride out, shutting her and the other cow back in there.. go get my long rope retrieving hook, walk around the front of the shed and in the little door and get the rope plumb loose from the post where I had it dallied up.. she and her baby are looking good, she will eventually get the rope to drop off her hind foot.. Yup, just a pretty typical day at calving time… sure wish I’d’a had some of the Animal Welfare lovers there to help me…
6 thoughts on “The best laid plans…”
May I reblog this – it will be a revelation to many of my readers, and perhaps an epiphany.
Go ahead Tom…. I’d hope you’d give me credit! 😀
Oh yes – that is the point!
Hi RD, I haven’t been in touch for a while but we have been busy here in Mo. Your talking about one of the things that people that dont ranch, or farm seem to know nothing about, work.
Every day, people get a little bit older, and a little slower. At the end of thoss days a rancher knows that he made it through another day without getting injured bad enough that he cant go again the next day.
9 to five people have lost touch with the people that keep em fed. They dont understand that when they go home at the end of the day, the rancher and farmer is still working. Hell they think the steak is born in the meat section of walmart, and the farmers produce magically appears while the farmer is enjoying a cup of coffee at the truckstop.
24-7-365, to feed a population that has no idea where their food comes from.
From someone who was but cant now, thankyou RD. For the vegetarians, take plenty of supliments, your gonna need em.
Good to hear from you Bill, hope all is well with you and yours.. yes, I guess we don’t think about it much around here as everyone either works at ranching and farm,ing or grew up doing it and understands… I’ve said for quite awhile a lot of problems in this country will get fixed when people start to go hungry… don’t know if you or I will ever see it but zAi grew up on stories of the Great Depression and they are still fresh in my mind..maybe, because I still use teams and saddle horses, I can relate better… take care and stay in touch…
I re-blogged this post today. You can see it at
I’ll print it and mail it to Kim 😉