Experience has taught us a few things about introducing a new cow into the herd.
For instance, if you turn a new cow out into a pasture, one of the first things she will do is walk the fence looking for a way out. With fences like ours, it would be very possible that she would find a way out and start looking for her herd, which in this case is twenty-five miles away. Another reason for keeping her in the small pen: If the horses see a new cow, they'll chase her mercilessly. Once they can become accustomed to her presence across the fence, they'll behave themselves and accept her once she's turned loose.
To prevent this from happening with Babe we had Cliff's brother unload her into the small pen behind the barn. Cliff suggested we put Jody in with her so she could be getting used to one of our cows at a time.
Yesterday afternoon I called Bonnie and Max up and let them into the pen. Oh, poor Max. Once again, I wish I had a picture, but by the time I got my camera it was over: Babe actually got him in a corner and got him down on the ground, continuing to head-butt him. No harm was done, and poor Max now knows where he stands in the herd. I believe he is low man on the totem pole. I don't have a picture of Babe and Max after the TKO, because I decided to put him in the stall so I could milk Bonnie this morning.
So Babe is the new herd boss. But why wouldn't she be? She weighs at least twice as much as any of the others.
By the way, Cliff's brother already had a perfectly good name for Babe: Annie.
However, Cliff's first favorite cow back in 1967 was a Polled Hereford named Babe, and I think he likes the idea of having another Babe. Most cows do not know their names, so changing hers is no big deal.
There are several little tricks Babe is going to have to learn in the next few days. Here's hoping everything goes well.