Appreciate the critters | TheFencePost.com

Appreciate the critters

Mad Jack Hanks
Wellington, Colo.

Gentle readers, I am really somewhat upset with myself. Reason being, there were too many times that I didn't stop long enough to smell the roses. By that I mean I just didn't appreciate all of the critters around me and what they were capable of and what they could mean to me besides just being "critters."

Sure, I played with the ranch dogs on occasion but never really took any time to investigate all of the fun that "Little Miss Martha" and daughter Sunni were having with all of the cats and kittens on the ranch. There were 26 I believe when we moved to Colorado. In my semi-retirement I have taken the time to watch critters more closely and enjoy what they have to offer me.

I was on the back deck recently looking  down toward the corrals. There is this one red steer that flat refuses to drink out of the pasture tub with his counterparts. Nope, come heck or high water, he is going to drink out of the horse tub in the corral. Ole paint, Howdy is getting a drink when ole Red wanders in the corral and stands and looks at that fat horse gettin' a drink.

Howdy, with a mouth full of water turns to look at the steer and shakes his head back and forth as if to say, "you ain't drinkin' here today bub!"

The steer in reprisal shakes his head back and forth saying, I believe, "that's what you think fat boy!"

This goes on for a minute or so and finally the steer lowers his head and does a bluff charge as if to say, "see the horns…they will hurt you so bad it will make your whole family sick!"

Recommended Stories For You

Ole Howdy just sort of closes his eyes as if to enjoy the cool water all the more. Finally, finally, Howdy gets his fill and wanders out of the pen and ole Red drinks his fill.

Just a few minutes ago I was filling the pasture tub and the steers were watching me very closely, as they always do. There is a "bob" wire fence to separate us. I know that steers are curious critters so I thought I'd test this bunch out. I stuck my hand over the tub and wiggled my fingers slightly to see which one, if any, would have the courage to come in contact with me and with their nose. They had all backed away just a little as they hadn't seen fingers over the tub before.

Finally one ol' black mott, slowly stuck his head over the tub and licked my fingers. Bingo, I had a new friend, or new friends.

In the past I had so many cattle on the ranch that they were just that, cattle that had to be worked, looked after and shipped to market with no thought of what I was missing by not taking the time to "play" with them a little. Critters can be fun if given a fair shot at being able to show off a little.

I do hope all you Dads had a happy and eventful Father's Day.

Stay tuned, check yer cinch on occasion and remember to stand tall for FREEDOM. I'll c.y'all, all y'all. ❖