Don’t give me your bull.

So I overslept this morning, this first glorious summerlike morning when I really seriously have things to do, things I spent yesterday clearing the decks for. I want to – at a minimum – get the poles up for the new woodshed today. No cold, no rain, no wind.

But first LB needs a walky, very seriously, because Daddy overslept. I got him on his long lead, looked out the window – the one I’ll be removing, which is why I want another matching window on the new bedroom wall – and saw a herdlet of cattle heading up the driveway.

Bother. I rummaged around in the desk drawer for the Mak, checked the magazine, went outside yelling and shooting into the ground to turn them around and send them back into the brush. Yeah, they have to move east/west but they don’t have to do it through my yard. There’s plenty of room north of me.

That’s all good clean fun but there’s a new element of risk in the past week, since Carson released the bulls. Cattle with calves will run when you wave your arms and yell; the gunfire is just to get their attention. Bulls are unimpressed by any of those things, and they can get hostile. You don’t want to be on your feet in the open with a hostile bull. Even if you win the fight to the death, your legal troubles have only begun. So while of course I’m armed with a .44 Magnum whenever I take LB for his walks, that’s not good enough. If I’m shooting at a bull I’m already in major trouble. Existential, legal, and financial trouble. Leave the state fast trouble. You wonder why I resent all these damned cattle? I’m not the aggressor here.

It worked last summer, maybe it’ll work this summer…


They’re not impressed by guns. They’re not usually impressed by gunfire noise. But they understand a big stick. I presume they’re familiar with cattle prods – I don’t have a cattle prod, so my approach is somewhat more Paleolithic. But it still works.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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10 Responses to Don’t give me your bull.

  1. Robert says:

    Perhaps dressing in home-tanned cattle hide to go with your spear in order to complete your ensemble? A necklace of bovine teeth would be a classy addition. A bull’s femur would make a serviceable club.

    I wonder about the efficacy of a dart-firing taser compared to a conventional cattle prod.

  2. Kentucky says:

    Wonder if the pointy/ouchy thing on the end of the big stick might approximate a cattle prod’s sensation, at least to the less aggressive specimens?

  3. Joel says:

    Dunno. Haven’t actually needed that part of the stick (yet).

    In fact I’ve never so far needed to do more than be carrying the stick. Every cow or bull I’ve encountered on foot so far runs in terror from the horrible stick. It’d be funny, if the situation weren’t sort of life-threatening.

  4. Andrew says:

    I wonder if stick = snake in the cows’ pea-powered brains. Hmmm, wonder if hanging rubber snakes from bushes might elicit the same response. That would be the weirdest fence ever if it worked.

  5. Hmmm…perhaps genetic selection from literally thousands of years of being a prey species to furless, bipedal apes with sticks has something to do with it. That sort of hard coded response is also given to loud, fur covered four foots (which is why they delight so very much in giving chase), and silent, fur covered, sharp everywhere four foots. Cattle (and horses, and sheep) fill the same ecological niche as rabbits, and have much the same response to natural predators, for all the same reasons.

  6. John of the GMA says:

    Wouldn’t a bullwhip be easier on the ammo supply?

  7. Joel says:

    There’s probably a pretty good reason cattlemen don’t actually use bullwhips…

  8. Mark Matis says:

    Cattle prod is definitely what they’re thinking, and if and when you ever have the $$$ to procure one, that is the way to go. If’n you get one designed for cattle, making contact will stop a charge REAL pronto. And even though the size of their brain is about the same as that of a Democrat, they tend to remember such an event for a LONG time.

  9. MJR says:

    Hey Joel… low tech, high tech no matter as long as it works. That’s one of the big problems today, (especially in government) too many people trying to replace things that work with things that look good.

  10. anonymous says:

    My Grandpa was a cattleman, who used a bull cane when he was in the corral. You don’t strike the animal, you use the end to push against the hide (usually the rib area) to get them to move. yes, bulls can be ornery, he had Brahmas then changed to Red Brangus as they are little more docile.

    We call those electric cattle prods ‘Hot Shots’. They are used in cattle yards to get the livestock ‘motivated’ to move a little faster. It has been reported that the stun gun sound (Tzap!) has the same effect, but I have not personally verified this as fact.

To the stake with the heretic!