Jordan Green searches for lost cows

March 14, 2019

I got suited up in my coveralls and work clothes, and then I headed for Pat's farm. But when I got there, he was nowhere to be found. I called him several times over the course of an hour before he finally answered his phone.

“We caught the cows,” he said.

Music to my ears. I had a column idea!

Here's the backstory, for those of you who are just tuning in. In November, we held what turned out to be an eventful yet terribly unsuccessful cattle drive. We were moving about 40 head of cattle from one pasture to another so that we could tear out and rebuild that pasture's fences.

Some of the cattle moved amiably. Some of the cattle moved forcefully. And some of the cattle moved completely away from the pasture. Quickly.

About seven of the wildest cattle you could ever imagine escaped our Blackwell pasture on that fateful November day. We chased them for weeks. Some turned up closer to Ponca City, and some were found on the other side of Blackwell. After a while, though, we found all of them – except for two.

Ever since they escaped, we've been hunting those two cattle like Bigfoot. We'd get a call that they were spotted in one part of town, and then we'd hear they were in another. But they always seemed to be exactly where we weren't.

We traipsed through the woods with binoculars. We enlisted the help of electric fences. We tried to lure them into places with hay. For weeks, nothing.

Then, on Sunday, it happened: they were found. I suppose the smell of the city dump and the adjacent sewer treatment plant did the trick, because that's the area where they were found. I guess that explains their crappy attitudes.

The wild cows were pursued, roped, and wrangled into a trailer. They were promptly taken to the local livestock auction. Their capture means increased safety for unsuspecting gardens, lawns, and flower beds. But it is also a “sigh of relief” for Patrick.

“Three months of stress was just immediately relieved,” he said. “I feel like I weigh less.”

Patrick said that professional team-ropers were able to chase the cattle down on horseback. He thanked the ropers, saying he is glad to have the cattle where they belong: in a pen that he's not responsible for.

To keep the problem from occurring in the future, he says he'll finally get around to rebuilding his fences – which really means that my friends and I will be driving posts while he “supervises.”

“Spring break is going to be new fences,” he quipped.

I'll probably have a column about that, too.