The Heifer Project Continued

Look who's back! Look who's back!

As many of you may recall from our Facebook page, we had a guest cow for a brief period to assist Leo in his “personal growth.” The results were brilliant. Within a few days, they were nuzzling over the fence and walking alongside the paddocks together. Since then, Leo’s mind has been 100 percent intact when he sees, smells or hears our neighbor’s cows in the adjacent field. Success!

Then comes Beleza, our new 6-year-old Holsteiner/Thoroughbred resale prospect.

Beleza evaluating the new addition.

Beleza evaluating the new addition.

She is a lovely mare: kind, patient, stunning mover and jumper and very willing, but not well exposed to the ways of the world. She has never reacted with the “vigor” that Leo showcased, instead she prefers to passage. Though passage is great, I much prefer to simply walk down the hill from our arena to the barn.

The Evaluation

So, our lovely neighbor Phyllis received another call: “Phyllis, may we borrow Ruby again?” Phyllis is so kind; she immediately said “Sure!” My first call to Phyllis had her confused. She asked if I wanted to train the cow, and when I explained that Leo was afraid of cows, it didn’t make much sense to her.

Phyllis’ family are avid farmers of the most beautiful land in our area. They had an array of farm animals growing up, including horses and cows, but never had this issue because the animals were well-versed with one another. Why a horse would be afraid of a cow just didn’t make sense. So, the second time around, Phyllis knew exactly what was happening: “Is Leo acting up?” Nope, just the new horse.

The Happy Cow

As Phyllis and her carpenter friend “Cow Whisperer John” quietly led Ruby from Phyllis’ farm to ours, Beleza was all in a tizzy. She bounced around with the exuberance of a lamb on fresh spring grass. Snorting, tail up, tearing around — Phyllis asked if she was an Arabian. Oh dear.

The Reaction

Leo, now very chill with cows.

Leo, now very chill with cows.

Ruby quietly went into her paddock, between Leo and Beleza’s pastures. She hopped around a bit, took a break, cantered down the hill, stopped to stare at the silly snorting gray creature, and then hopped around some more. Leo continued to graze casually with little care that his unique friend had returned. Ruby is a happy cow. Beleza is not a happy horse.

But she will be.

The adventure continues!

Katie Murphy

[email protected]

Murphy Eventing on Facebook

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