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Alright, here’s an ordeal I was involved in lately. We’ve started calving about full time here at the place. Well, we had a cow that calved sometime between our night checks and her calf ended up in the creek and was frozen in the ice by morning. Reminded me of the character “Scrat” from the movie “Ice Age”. Fortunately we had a set of twins and one of them needed a mother, so we headed down to try to get this bovine to the barn.

It started out fine, for she headed in the general direction we wanted, but then she became uncooperative the closer we got to the gate. She went out the gate, then ran off and crashed through Grandpa’s yard fence and ended up back in the calving lot she had just been coaxed from.

There was another gate on a different side of the lot so we tried this one to see if we would be more successful. After getting her out this gate and towards the barn, she again crashed through Grandpa’s yard fence and ended up back in the calving lot she had just been coaxed from.

About this time I was looking at these fences I would have to fix and I wasn’t excited about it but we tried one more time. This time we got her out the gate and toward the barn. She took off and ran straight into a rail fence and happened to break the top rail in the process …after which she managed to crash through Grandpa’s yard fence and end up back in the calving lot she had just been coaxed from.

By this time I was losing patience with her. I realized the reason for her obstinance was an extreme vitamin P (my poly rope) deficiency and an overdose of oxygen. I tightened my cinch and prepared to remedy her problem. After I got her caught, we started her toward the barn once again. This time she couldn’t get away. Just about to the gate, she sulled up and refused to continue. Grandpa happened to be feeding in the tractor. So we decided to change her mind with the that. I got her pointed at the gate, and Grandpa got behind her and pushed with the tractor bucket. Once we got her out the gate, she actually started to travel of her own accord! The barn must have looked inviting right about then… so now this mama cow has a happy new calf, the fences are in repair, and we will carry on till branding season!

Jackson Wald is a featured columnist for High Minded Horseman and a fine example of Montana’s ranching youth. He can generally be found on the family ranch, working cattle and his latest colt project; usually at the same time.

Comments for "Scrat's Mother"

  1. Rick Buckley on May 27, 2010

    Very enjoyable, descriptive story!

  2. Jake Wald on December 31, 2010 Thanks Rick! I appreciate it!

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