A friend of a friend of a friend on FB, posted this pic and I was blown away! It was a Longhorn in a dressage saddle!
I KNOW JUST ABOUT NOTHING ON THIS SUBJECT…
I know nothing about cattle – and even less about riding cattle.
But, I’ve surmised that these are mostly steers who have been raised and trained to do tricks, ride and be bombproof for parades.
Talk about an eye-catcher! Riding a Longhorn steer ANYWHERE will make every available set of eyes – turn.
From the videos I watched, the steers and cows work for treats, just like most of us. One video I watched showed a very pregnant cow still going through the paces. She was fine with it. She even did some slow spins.
They all seemed gentle.
HOWEVER, WHAT IS UP WITH THE NOSE RING?
I know nose rings are very popular and trendy right now, but I wonder why the rings are used on these riding cattle. I can surmise that nose rings are needed because it is a sure way to keep a handle on a 2000+ animal while carefully walking in a parade surrounded by kids and grannys.
Some of the riding steer videos I watched showed the bovine in a halter or sidepull.
Perhaps they start with the sidepull and move into the nose ring. Dunno. And, I don’t know if the nose ring hurts. I assume it does. Or, at least it is irritating… except I know someone with a nose ring and once it healed, pulling on it was like pulling on an earring. It didn’t hurt but you didn’t want to take the chance of not following the direction of the pull – if you know what I mean.
For my money, I’d like to know the steer had brakes, just in case some silly human decided to blow off his foghorn or release 100 pigeons.
DRESSAGE, SORTING CATTLE, RIDING PARADES, MAKING A STATEMENT…
There are several videos on this website that show these cattle at work. I was most impressed by the dressage series.
First off, they picked a black cow which was perfect. Then, the rider wore the correct outfit for dressage. The cow had a black bridle. Nice touches.
Then, they took off and the rider asked the cow to do dressage (easy) basic movements. They rode on the rail (which scared me because of the horns… I kept wincing as they drew near any fencing), they did diagonals and different paces. Fun! The cow seemed perfectly contented.
Of course, I don’t know what an upset cow looks like but I hear them bellowing enough at the ranch next door when dinner is late… so I think they’d bellow if they were unhappy. Or not move. I mean, how can you make a huge animal move if it doesn’t want to? I know, I know, cattle prods but there were none in any of these videos so I think they do it because there are treats involved.
Here is a website I found… Lots of videos.
DO YOU TRAIN LONGHORNS?
If you have any experience with this, please email me. I’d love to hear about their willingness, attention span, temperament, comfort to ride and anything else you wish to tell me. So interesting!
And, I’m glad there is a job for the steer, other than the typical…
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