I have to admit an ugly truth about my dog, Kelee. He’s a cow bigot. I’ve come to this conclusion because of his somewhat selective behavior. A small herd of free-range cattle moved through this morning a couple pastures away from my house, and he was on them! This was reminiscent of the time he and I were driving up my road and came face to face with some cows. He went ballistic! “Let me out—NOW!” he almost screamed (if a dog can scream). I opened his door and he flew out of the Jeep, drove those cattle ¾ of a mile up the drive, across my two acres, out the Land Grant, all the way out to the Llano. That’s about 4 miles.
This isn’t just because he’s a working dog. He doesn’t do this with horses, you see, just cattle. With horses he’s more willing to go out and hang with them. He might bark a bit but nothing that even disturbs their grazing. He just sort of picks a spot nearby and lounges with them—a kind of working the herd by keeping an eye on them attitude, not the shrill, “Get the heck off of my property or I’ll eat your lips off!” stance he takes, universally, with cattle. I like to think I raised him right but, then again, he wasn’t with me until he was about four. So the damage was already done, apparently.
He grew up with horses but that’s the worst form of bigotry: Intolerance for what you don’t know or understand. I have to admit, though, I don’t love cattle ranging on my land. They’re pretty messy and a little bit wild up here, especially the mamas with babies. Maybe I’ll just turn a blind eye to my dog’s prejudices since they seem to support my desires. Oh dear, does that make me a cow bigot too?