Cow Sense

From Guest Blogger, Robyn Buttars

When the weatherman in Salt Lake City warned it could be as low as 1°F and called it a “very cold” morning, I realized it would take a long list of adjectives to describe the projected -20°F  on our dairy, one hundred miles to the north. At 5:00 a.m., when my husband, Kent, went to chore the expected low was accurate.

-20 Degrees in Lewiston, UT

-20 Degrees in Lewiston, UT

I snuggled down in my warm bed hoping the water lines at the barn had not frozen during the night.  Then I worried about the trucks and tractors. Would they start so the cows could be fed?

At quarter to seven, Kent ran into the house to shower, shave and dress in his suit for a 7:00 a.m. church meeting. Everything must have worked, I thought. Then he told me when he went to feed the heifers, the gate to the corral was wide open. Chasing heifers around the field, through a foot of snow, is a dismal task when it is 20° F. But when the temperature is -20°F? Well, you get the picture.

“How long did it take to get the heifers back in the corral?” I asked sympathetically.

“It was so strange,” Kent said. “One heifer was standing in the open gate and another a few feet away in the manger. I walked up to them and they went willingly into the corral. I searched but couldn’t find more heifers even though there were a lot of hoof prints in the field.  They must have run around during the night then gone back in the corral on their own.” He shook his head and shrugged his shoulders. “I’ve never seen anything like that.”

I was grateful for our warm home that morning and that Kent had a reprieve from a disagreeable chore. I couldn’t help wonder what motivated the heifers to leave the freedom of a -20° romp for the confines of their corral. How long had they stayed restrained behind an open gate?  I finally concluded that whatever the reason for their unusual behavior, they picked a good time to show a little uncommon cow sense.

Despite frigid temps, the landscape in Northern Utah is still quite beautiful

Despite frigid temps, the landscape in Northern Utah is still quite beautiful

Read more from Country Fiction Author, Robyn Buttars, on her blog: robynbuttars.blogspot.com

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