To be honest, I almost sold her last year. She’s one of those skinny boney cows that you just can’t fatten up. However, she’s only about 4 years old & has a good calf. Not really any skin off my back if I sell her. I’d just buy a coupe of heifers to replace her. But....she’s had a nice calf every year just like clockwork. I can tell more in a few days. If the calf isn’t around she’ll come try to take the bucket out of my hand but it’s gets real when the calf is with her. She hasn’t tried to charge me for just standing there by her but I keep my distance & on alert.If she makes you uncomfortable you should sell her the first chance you get. It sounds like that is the case.
If you are truly on the fence about selling or keeping her there are a few questions to ask yourself.
Has she been a problem before now staying home?
How/why did she get out? Jump? Hole? Eating through fence?
How old is she? How productive is she? Does she calve every 365? Does she raise a good calf?
I guess what I’m saying is if you have lost your confidence in her, it’s too late for her and she should go. But if she is a good producer and has a calf every 10-11 months and weans heavy, I can see hanging with her for a while. Pretty good chance she will always be protective of her calves but can be manageable if you’re willing. Think of it like this, if she had not been protective of her calf this question would likely have been can I kill my neighbor’s dogs for killing my calf?
It is correct that they are unpredictable and there is always a chance for something to go wrong when dealing with livestock. Everybody's management and expectations are different. I like docile cattle too, but I have no problem culling a bad acting animal. If it's one that's just protective of a new calf for a couple weeks that's fine with me. I don't like working with wild or aggressive ones, they can get you hurt fast and serious or worse. If we come across one like that it doesn't matter if she's the best cow in the world, she is out of here. There is going to be good and bad dispositions in any breed. I have seen some high strung ear cattle, but some of the ones I have had have been as or more docile than some of our straight bred Herefords or Angus. We have a Beefmaster cow that is dog gentle. Have also had some Santa Gertrudis females that were very calm too.All I’m saying is that nearly every cow that I own have at one time or another acted like an idiot, and if they have not they will. They are livestock and not pets. I will never fault a cow for trying to protect her calf. If it’s an ongoing issue then we have a completely different situation.
I do not have, nor will I have, any eared cattle on my place because in my experience they are flighty, and hard to work and keep home. With that being said, I try to keep my cattle as docile and easy to work as I can but I also see them for what they are and that is livestock. They are often ornery, but so am I. I cannot remember the last time I sold a cow simply because she was hard to handle. It always plays in, but it is not a single incident, single trait decision. Unless it is a production trait. Not trying to offend anybody, just giving my opinion.
I'll take boring at point in my life. Already got more than enough stories about psycho cattle.
There’s value in cows being “dog gentle”, but for me it’s way more dangerous for 200 head of gentle cows trying to follow my bucket and get their head in it, or chasing my feed truck, than a crazy or two that hang back with their head up.For my personal style of management the cow works for me not the other way around.
If I can’t grab a bucket of feed and get the cow to follow me she’s gone.
I agree I am just a small timer. 20 cows and 5 or 6 heifers is about the most I ever have here.There’s value in cows being “dog gentle”, but for me it’s way more dangerous for 200 head of gentle cows trying to follow my bucket and get their head in it, or chasing my feed truck, than a crazy or two that hang back with their head up.