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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What Is This?

Once again the ghost writer of Martha and Bailey's blog has caught my attention. Who are you really Miss Ghost Writer? (Martha and Bailey are Basset Hounds with whom Baby Rocket Dog and Hootie have become bloggie buddies.) There was a picture of this "neighbor" of theirs on their blog:

How many of you know what this thing is?? Well, you are twice the man I'll ever be if you guessed a Highland Cow!! Isn't this an amazing looking creature? Now, if you know me at all, you know that I have had a major fear of cows since I was a little kid. But, this thing looks like a teddy bear! I became quite interested in this breed of cattle, so I googled Highland Cow. What an interesting breed this is. Here is a list of traits I pulled from one of the Highland Cattle Breeders sites:

Hardy, Gentle, Thrifty, Ease of calving, Longevity, Profitable

The one that caught my attention was Thrifty. Oh my goodness, even the Scottish cows are thrifty!!

Then I found the following on another google search:


The following is a schedule of events in the life of a highland cow in Summer pasture mode:

5:30 to 6:00 a.m . - Cows wake up. Senior cow gets up first and stands in front of the other cattle so they can admire her. All then get up and do a little ritual poop. Cows may make sarcastic greetings to each other like "good morning hairbag" or "who made those horns?"

6:00 to 8:00 a.m. - general grazing time, followed by a period of staring at the master's home. All drink water during this period.

8:00 to 9:00 a.m. - All cattle receive the master, reporting any overnight problems and complaints. Common complaints are: quality of hay, grass has lost it's crunch, why are we not being raked more regularly etc. Master gives hay and they show appreciation by staring at him and threatening to break wire and escape or rub and kill more trees.

9:00 to 11:00 a.m. - Cattle find shade and socialize. The senior cow leads discussions.. (I have learned their lingo, so have a fair understanding of what goes on)...basically they gossip! They are very interested in visitors and the shoes, belts or gloves they wear, wondering who they once may have been. Highland cows have no teeth on top so can't say their "L"s. They talk of escape from the master during these socials. This escape talk never goes any place, probably due to their speech impediments. One recent exchange went like this. "Rets rush master when by fence raking reaves, knock him off his regs and break for woods, cross that rittle rake through the woods to rarger, greener pasture."

11:00 to 4:00 p.m. - general grazing, pooping and peeing, rubbing on trees, trying to break fence, resting in shade, staring at master's house or watching him work around yard or barn. A highlight of this period is when master's wife yells at him or he does something stupid that appeals to their sense of humor. Highland cows don't laugh openly, but smile and grin with a slight upper lift of their mouths.

4:00 to 7:00 p.m. - eat hay master has given them, poop and pee followed by a time of meditation. Highland cattle have no religion but know they are sacred and play on this. Crop circles, sacred cows, their role at the nativity and in Scotland's history is very important to them. The face west as the sun sets and place their noses on the ground, standing perfectly still for up to a minute. It is a most moving ceremony.

7:00 to Dusk - Senior cow decides where they will bed down for night. She usually sleeps looking towards master's home, with other cattle behind. They are very quiet during this period; however, there is some lowing or "rowing" as they say.

At Dusk - To get to sleep, cows tell stories for night. These are epic tales which highland cattle have passed down for centuries...I have overheard them. Some of their favourites are:

Wellington Wullie" - about a lonely shepherd who goes nuts and trys to ravish a herd of highlands -

Old Mary and the Wolf" - about an old cow who fights off a wolf to save her calf - "How the snake got it's name", and on full moon nights, the horror tale "Jock be nimble, Jock be quick.

Then they fall to sleep secure in the knowledge that the master loves and cares for them and has been placed on this earth to serve their every need and be their devoted servant.


composed by expatriot Scot...Del Clark...Fenwick Ont.(got this from )

My search was turning up some interesting stuff! Not only do these hairballs come in the giant economy size, but they also come in miniature. No joke. There are tiny little Highland Cows!

For all kinds of information that you probably will never need, click here. If I were not afraid of cows, I think I'd have to get a few of these guys.

Grace and peace to all my blog friends. Hope your week is going good. Let me know if you decide to buy some cattle.

love, Cassie


Ben said...

That is one complete animal there! I wonder if they do a highland jig when you are not looking.

Grandma J said...

Are you sure there's no Texas Longhorn genes in there?

Martha Basset said...

Thanks for all that interesting info on the dear old Highland cow. They are gorgeous - at least the one in Skye was behind a fence. We went to Mull a few years ago and the Highland cos were on the road! We had to sit in the car taking their photos whilst waiting for them to move out of the way!
I must have a look for those pictures. I had no idea the Highland cow would be so interesting!
Quite nice being referred to as a 'ghost writer' - kinda gives me some sore of status!!!

Caroline said...

What can I say!! I have always loved Highlands.

Anonymous said...

Very cute pictures.

Busy Bee Suz said...

How cute...they tell cow stories at bedtime!!
I would have to classify these guys as the Farah Fawcetts of the cow world.

Me said...

I'm not much for the bovine breed. I'm pretty sure it has a lot to do with my germaphobia. I will admit though, they are kinda cute. Cuddle me and love me cute!

Daisy said...

Cassie this post gave me a good laugh! HA! Who knew cows led such fascinating lives! ha ha ha ha! They sure are great hairy beasts, aren't they? I think having those fellows (or gals?)around would make me nervous. Thanks for making me smile. Hope you have a great day. :D

Karen said...

Those are some pretty hairy beasts. Boy what a life they lead. Hmmmmm, maybe I'll return as one of them! LOL!

Betsy from Tennessee said...

No cattle for me, Cassie... But--I love to eat BEEF... ha... Interesting info from Scotland. I did enjoy reading Martha and Bailey's blog. Wouldn't it be neat to go to Scotland someday?????


Rev. Paul said...

Thanks for those pictures, Cassie. I hadn't seen Highland cattle in a long time.

As a Scots-Irish person, I suppose I should take some sort of pride in them. ;-)

John Gray said...

I would love a cow like this!
as A child we used to go to Scotland for all our holidays and we used to see these benign cows all the time...quite beautiful

EBet said...

I feel honored to be among those who knew by first glance that this was Scottish Highland cattle. A couple of my friends raise them and my dad has helped one of them with roping and worming etc. Kinda crazy with those horns.

A highlanders life sounds very similar to our sheep's live although our sheep may be a little, okay a lot, more vocal than highlanders.

EBet said...

Ps Love your dogs. We used to have one, he was great! Yours look very groomed and certainly kissable, 'round here we call that "smoochie"!

John Poole said...

I was going to say that it was a yak. But then..not sure I've ever seen a yak! (yakity-yak! :-)