This morning I spent several hours cleaning up after the cow. When we talked about getting a cow to raise for beef I never really imagined all of challenges that a cow would bring. I certainly never would have expected a cow that could escape from any type of confinement. I never realized that having a cow was similar to having a really big dog. I suppose I should be thankful that he can't dig.
Last night, the cow got tired of being in the pasture so he moved into the barn. Unfortunately, he didn't go to his stall. He wandered. Our barn is part garage and part barn. We park three cars there and use it to store camping, sports and farm gear. The barn side of the building has a dirt floor. The floor on the garage side is concrete. The cow went straight for the garage side of the barn. He knocked over trash cans, relocated bags of feed and helped himself to the chicken food. He made a mess and then he made several more messes.
After discovering the cow loose in the barn, my husband shut the cow in his stall. That strategy lasted most of the day. At least the cow allowed us to believe that he was contained. Late this afternoon we found the cow, once again, wandering in the barn. The cow unlatched one side of the large sliding door in the back of his stall and squeezed through the gap the door made when he pushed against it. The door is not an easy one for me to open. As the cow will tell you, there are advantages to having a lot of extra wait to throw around. Thankfully, we found the cow before he was able to make more messes in the barn.
The challenge now is to figure out how to keep the cow where we put him. We've purchased a new cable and stake for the cow. We have plans for a fence. Hopefully, we'll find a way to keep the cow contained. I sure won't mind if I never have to spend another morning cleaning up after a cow. Cow messes are a lot bigger than dog messes.