There is a weird thing going on in our pasture.

Here’s the way our pasture was, Before.  It has been like this pretty consistently for seven years.

Frances, in royal purple, ruled the roost.  Even the donkeys (yellow) gave in to her. They often tried to avoid her, staying out of her way as much as possible, but if it came down to it, Frances got to taste the new hay bale first, Frances got to test the water as Dave filled the waterer, and even Cheney gave in.

The two bull calves followed her around and did as they were told. This is pretty literal. She decided whether they were going to graze in the back portion or lie down under the big tree, or go get some water.  They didn’t. They followed.

For a couple of days, we noticed that their world was rocked.  Ours was too, of course, but Frances didn’t decide when I took a nap or got a glass of water or had dinner. For the boys, it was much more traumatic.  They were rudderless.

Shadow and Cheney, the donkeys, kind of stayed out of the way.

Then, yesterday, we sold the two yearlings to the dairy, so they left us.  It’s more than time to do that.  They get big and we cease to trust them.

That meant that we moved the five middle-sized boys (including Blue/Little Al) to the pasture.

So now we have five six-month-old calves and the two donkeys out there.

There has been a massive power play in the last twenty-four hours.

It looks something like this.

Nature abhors a vacuum, and we had a big one.  So Cheney has seen her chance, and she, by golly, is taking it.

She had been sort of dominated by little Shadow for a long time, and sometimes still is.  Shadow is more pushy when it comes to following Dave around, for example.  But Cheney is starting to see herself as Boss Donkey.

Dave moved some hay out to the pasture yesterday, and the five brothers, being new to the field, came over to check it out.  Shadow took one look at them, expressed total disdain, and turned and walked away.

Cheney not only stood her ground, but brayed at them and then ran them off.  She is going to be the one who gets to taste the new hay first.

I can almost sense Cheney saying to herself, “I have been waiting for this for years. That bitch cow is gone and I am gonna take over.”  It’s reminiscent of a banana republic having a coup.

I am not sure if I want to slap her or hug her.

I have no larger point to make. Feel free to come up with one.


5 thoughts on “Dominance”

  1. Maverick cattle are cattle without a leader; cattle alone = cattle eaten.

    Cheney is finally able to step up, assert the power of the ass, and lead the way.

    I hope that the rest of the herd, both species, accept the power of the purple mantle and everyone enjoys their time at the Davis ranch.


  2. Well its obviously a position that needed to be filled by a female…you cant have one of the Blues Brothers running things or that Ass Shadow.

    Glad to hear there is a new normal happening.


  3. WoooOOOOOOoooo….. the ghost of Frances lives on 😉

    Seriously tho, I’ve alwys wondered how Ms Frances took it when you went on our extended cruise. Like, did she act even more stubborn (if possible lol)?

    Did she give you a warm welcome on your return? Or did she pretend she did not care that you were back??


  4. I’ve alwys wondered how Ms Frances took it when you went on our extended cruise.

    She got much more tolerant and even fond of Jason, because he came to the house twice a day and fed her. She was dry, so there was no milking going on. She was glad we were back, almost entirely because then we did things the “right” way. LOL


  5. I did an adoption application for a mammoth donkey 2 days ago. Should I be worried? Lol. Our old mare is certainly herd leader. I call her the old bitch. Little thing too and just sassy as can be. She’s lucky she is cute because that attitude, ugh. A ride with her always involves some nips to my horse, she can not stand him and he just tries so very hard to play with her.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.