Had a round with a bull today.

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Ky hills

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Our current bulls are home raised pretty well docile and easy going, but one a coming 3 year old commercial Angus has always been a bit unpredictable. This morning it was still below freezing and at the time was around 20 degrees. Had let the group of cows and calves to eat and that bull is in with that group. Normally he doesn't cause much commotion, but this time he whipped around towards me bellering and holding his tongue out. I was in a position where I could get a cow between us and give me a break to get back to the barn. I got a fiberglass sorting stick, and went back out, to get him on out thinking he would go on. It turned into a bluff fest. He was whirling around constantly and taking a few steps toward me raising and lowering his head, tongue out and bellering still.
I was able to back him out, but not very happy if that continues or escalates.
My wife wondered if it was weather related someway. The other bulls one a year older and another a year younger in a different field acted the very same calm and unconcerned way as they always do,
 
I'm glad that ended the way it did without you getting hurt. That could have been bad. He might not bluff next time. If he's already been known to be unpredictable, then that would be strike 3 for him in my book. Not worth the risk. Enough other bad things can happen around the farm without having to worry about him every time you're out there.
 
Feeling frisky when he saw the feed bucket is my guess. Not uncommon.

That's why you never put yourself in a place with out an escape. Their play is a lot rougher than ours.

I think you were right to back him off with a stick. I'd take the stick every time now to help establish your space until he gets over it.
 
Feeling frisky when he saw the feed bucket is my guess. Not uncommon.

That's why you never put yourself in a place with out an escape. Their play is a lot rougher than ours.

I think you were right to back him off with a stick. I'd take the stick every time now to help establish your space until he gets over it.
Yeah, I need to have a stick with me at all times around them, I tend to get to comfortable around them.
He's kinda bellered around and showed off around before, but would turn and go out when I came toward him. Today it was more aggressive and intense. They had already eaten and most had already left when I went back to drive them out.
 
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That bull would be on the cull list in my world. Always been a bit unpredictable and a bluffing contest is a hard NO. You think that fiberglass stick is going to do anything if he decides he's not bluffing?
You're right that little stick wouldn't do anything, We've always culled pretty heavy on disposition, on generally speaking our cattle are easy to work around and I get too relaxed, even though I preach against that, after today and really having to bluff him, he's going.
 
Poor bull. We raise them, pamper them, basically make them pets then get upset when they are too tame. If your going to make them pets at least take the time to train them to be mannerly.
Ours are not exactly pets, we want them easy to work with, but don't want a pet bull, that's asking for a problem. They still should have a flight zone, of a few feet anyways It's a balance I don't want cattle that throw up their heads and hightail it away as soon as they see you either.
 
You have to balance them some times. Not all have the natural flight zone you want. Just with handling them more and more some will get more and more comfortable and you will have to reinforce the boundary. We close the flight zone with feed usually. Some times it happens intentionally and some times it's unintentional.

I would definitely see if he does it over and over and if it gets better or worse. Consider what the situation was around the action and see if you do some thing different if you get the same reaction.

I try to avoid going right at a bulls head on. Cows also for that matter. Most all animals see that as aggressive move. When I want to get cattle moving I try to get in behind them and get them moving. Even if it's not in the right direction just get off their hip and get movement. If they keep turning and squaring up head first then you have another issue.
 
I had a situation about 30 years ago with a bull acting about the same as described. I had a dairy herd at that time. one day I was driving the cows and bull up from the pasture at milking time. the bull was in the back half of the herd as I walked behind the rest. suddenly the bull stopped and turned around. I stopped and started looking for a place to get out of his way in-case he decided that today was the day he wasn't bluffing. He lowered his head. bellering with his tongue out, and started charging at me with no intention of stopping. my closes escape path was to get to a line fence gate about 20 yards away. I made it but I felt him push my legs up as I jumped over that gate. I got lucky that day so I hope you decide that bull is not worth someone getting hurt or killed.
 
Dad always said that a bull when they charge will close their eyes before they hit you, but a cow won't. He also said that a cow won't necessarily hit you head on, but still may graze you, if she hits you at all. I have not been brave enough test his theory out.

When he was working out on the Sweetwater, when working cows it was his job to deal with the nose tongs, and there were times they would let the cow go before he got the tongs off. Dad would stand there as the cow would come charging by, he would grab the horns and bulldog her down to get the tongs; back in those days everything had horns. They just knew that he was going motored down; I guess he never got hit.
 
I had a situation about 30 years ago with a bull acting about the same as described. I had a dairy herd at that time. one day I was driving the cows and bull up from the pasture at milking time. the bull was in the back half of the herd as I walked behind the rest. suddenly the bull stopped and turned around. I stopped and started looking for a place to get out of his way in-case he decided that today was the day he wasn't bluffing. He lowered his head. bellering with his tongue out, and started charging at me with no intention of stopping. my closes escape path was to get to a line fence gate about 20 yards away. I made it but I felt him push my legs up as I jumped over that gate. I got lucky that day so I hope you decide that bull is not worth someone getting hurt or killed.
Glad you were able to get away from him.
 
I got a bull that we got around 14 or 16 mo. He was real mellow and would just kind of meander up to you for feed. At some point he decided he would start coming at a dead run up to me for feed. It was very intimidating. The first time I jumped at him and hollered. He stopped and walked up. The next time he did it again I swung the bucket and hollered. He stopped and walked up. I started taking my fiberglass stick with me and when we would run I would smack the ground ground in front of me with it. He started running about that far and stopping, then walking up.

He's 7 years old and will still do it if you pen him some times. It's just his personality.

I love getting people to feed him. 😄
 
Consider what the situation was around the action
I do agree with this. Few years ago, we were in the bull pasture and it was a wet, muddy, snowy mess. Mr TC's boots were caked, and he started stomping his boots to knock off residual mud and scrape off the rest on a rock, essentially "pawing". One of the bulls took that as a direct challenge or threat - and responded in kind, including lowering and shaking his head. Plus, he's rarely around the bulls, so they're not really used to him & boundaries haven't been established.

But in KY hills case, "always been unpredictable" is the operative phrase.
 

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