“We’ve never seen such a friendly cow,” farmer friends kept telling me. True enough. When people enter the pasture, Elvis comes running up to greet them. The effect is rather like a building lifting off its foundations and charging down a hill: You just pray he can stop if he wants to. He sticks out his big tongue and slurps. He grabs at shirts and hats. If you sit down, he’ll happily put his head in your lap. But since his landings are neither graceful nor accurate, it’s not an entirely welcome gesture.
. . .
But Elvis has changed my ideas about cows. He’s very social, fond of me and my helper Annie and my Labrador Pearl. When I take the dogs out for their morning walk, he moos repeatedly until I bring him an apple. He’s figured out how to move bales of hay into place so he can snuggle next to them (when he lies down, you can sometimes feel the vibrations all the way to the farmhouse). He especially seems to love the view, staring out at the valley much of the day.
He is amiable, happy to hang out with the donkeys and sheep, given the chance. He coexists peaceably with the chickens—with everyone, in fact. Once or twice a week, he has a burst of cow madness and goes dancing playfully around the pasture in circles. Trees tremble.
Plus, he comes when called, stays when asked, and doesn’t grab clothing anymore. Not all of my dogs will do (or not do) those things as reliably. I’m very happy to have him on the farm. It will cost me more than $1,000 to keep him in hay next winter. A bargain.
“The World’s Smartest Cow: What my steer, Elvis, has taught me,” by Jon Katz, Slate, April 28, 2006
DEMOCRACY: You have two cows. A vote is held, and the cows win.
DEMOCRACY: You have two cows. They outvote you 2-1 to ban all meat and dairy products. You go bankrupt.
See “You have two cows. The government….” from TheCapitol.Net
Two Cool Cows
Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type
A Field Guide to Cows: How to Identify and Appreciate America’s 52 Breeds
Portrait of a Burger as a Young Calf
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