The best way to explain it is to say that it was all probably a misunderstanding. But let me start at the beginning....
The Discovery Channel has had a huge success with Shark Week every year. When they read that you are more likely to die from a bovine than a shark, statistically speaking, they thought it would be a great opportunity to make more money with a new group of shows and call it Cow Week to show how mean and deadly cows can be.
They had begun negotiations with us a few months ago to star in one of those new reality tv shows. Dr. Temple Grandin, the famous cow handling expert, had even been approached to produce/host/be-a-part of the show. But then it all fell through.
Gentleman Farmers Treat Cows Like Ladies To Keep Them Calm
Perhaps a slight exaggeration, but that was what I heard the Discovery Channel man tell his boss on his cellphone and it pretty much ended the show right there. He found out there isn't much that can be sensationalized about dairy cows the way he wanted. He asked a lot of questions and was kind of disappointed when he found out the truth about how The Farmer works to keep us happy, not angry, and how there wasn't much "deadly force" being used anywhere.
The Farmer has mostly gotten it figured out that if he does things our way we'll do what he wants. That isn't so hard is it? There's no reason then for us to be upset and take it out on him. Most of the other farmers have that figured out, too. They do many things around here to keep us happy and comfortable.
|I insist on fresh cucumber slices from the |
garden for my spa treatment!
Farmers put grooves in the concrete we walk on so that it is easier for us to get traction. Others put down rubber mats for their cows to walk on. They build gates and corrals and such so that it is easy for us to find our way on our own and no one gets mad. Some farmers have fans blowing to help us keep our cool. I've even seen a farm with a back rubbing machine! How relaxing is that?
We've got cool fresh water available just about everywhere a bovine could want. The Farmer has feed, a hay buffet, and tasty silage for us to chow down on all the time. He even plays the radio in the calf barn for the baby calves so they don't get bored. I'd say it is the little things that count.
Comfort, comfort, comfort.
These are the things that make us want to make more milk. Maybe The Farmer has picked up a thing or two from being married with kids. You know, if mama ain't happy ain't nobody happy. That applies to dairy cows and I think he understands.
Would I describe The Farmer as a gentleman farmer? Hmm, I don't know, he doesn't wear a suit like I think of some ol-timey gentleman wearing. Does he try really hard to treat us like ladies? With the exception of the slip of a coarse word we've heard him mumble to himself on occasion I'd say he does a fair job.
None of this impressed the Discovery Channel people. When they saw a bunch of calm cows wondering around eating, being milked, and sleeping out on the pasture I thing they figured it out: no fussing and no fighting here! Maybe I was a little disappointed when they cancelled Cow Week, but I've heard the camera adds one hundred pounds to a cow and I don't think I could stand to see myself like that everyday!
Agent 414, reporting from the Udder Side.