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I see cattle, in a farm corral in Las Cruces, NM., that seem to have bonnets tied over their horns?

by cattlefarmer on August 11, 2009

James W asked:


The bonnets are made of something like canvas and are open over the horns. There are about 15 cows or steers all with the same kind of covering over their heads.Do you have any idea what the bonnets are for or why they are wearing them.
(No silly, ridiculous answers, please)

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Rockin Like Janet Reno™ August 11, 2009 at 4:58 am

The only thing I can think of, is to mark the cows.

Maybe as they do something, they take the bonnets off.

I have no idea otherwise.

jillmcm1970 August 12, 2009 at 4:46 am

I’m having trouble picturing what you describe, but could they be fly protection? Do they cover the ears and/or eyes as well? The only cattle fly masks that I know of cover the face but have an opening for the horns if the cattle have them.

Farm Gal August 13, 2009 at 12:14 am

There is a device with weights on each horn that straps together on the top of a cows head. It is used to train their horns to grow in a certain way. I’ve never thought of it as looking like a bonnet, but this is likely what you saw. Probably going to be rodeo stock.

chickdoc101 August 15, 2009 at 12:28 am

Howdy,

I’d be interested to know as well.

I assume you are not a rancher.
If you could not contact this farmer
Call a feed hay dealer there and ask them.
Then please let us know as well.
I’ll stay tuned.
Thanks

Are you sure they did not roam under your neighbors clothesline?
You’d know it if, In addition to bonnets,
they start snagging bras, panties and boxer shorts?
O.K. no Amish jokes either.

CF_ August 17, 2009 at 12:41 pm

not sure if I am following what you are saying.. is the bonnet covering their face or horns??

if over their face its probably fly protection.. they even make special things for horses to wear for this reason as some horses are more bothered by flies than others.. maybe same with the cattle??

bikinkawboy August 20, 2009 at 8:13 pm

If you saw them just recently, it’s pretty late in the year for flies to be a problem.

I don’t mean this as a joke, but are you sure they’re cattle? Some breeds of sheep are pretty good size. Ram sheep unaccustomed to each other like to butt heads and can break their neck and die doing do. They make leather or fabric shields that extend part way down over their face and make it impossible for them to see forward. They can still see well enough on the sides and bottom to eat, but not well enough forward to back up and get a run at their opponent. These masks are made to fit over or around the horns of horned sheep.

Before you embarrass yourself talking to the owner, do they have long tails with a hairy switch on the end found of a cow or a short, downward hanging tail (no switch) or no tail at all if they’ve been docked found on a sheep. There are sheep that look like goats and goats that look like sheep, so if they have a short tail sticking out or up, they’re a goat.

JayBug August 21, 2009 at 5:47 am

Maybe it’s UV protection if it fits over the eyes. This is used, especially for horses with unpigmented or pink eylids because they are very prone to skin cancer in those areas and Hereford cattle have the same problem. Now some breeds are intentionally bred to be just like Herfords or white-face cattle except that the have brown bullseye coloration on there eyes and the rest of the face is white. Basically the hoods function like sunglasses.

kittymom August 22, 2009 at 1:20 pm

accessorizing? sorry, i couldn’t help myself……..LOL!

Libby C August 24, 2009 at 5:48 pm

Sounds like a set of roping steers with horn wraps on their horns. These cattle are probably being practiced on , and the wraps help the cattle from getting too sore-headed from the repeated ropings.

Larry A August 24, 2009 at 8:56 pm

those are roping steers and those covers are used to protect the area of their heads near the horns where they are roped during practice so that they can be roped many times without causing injuries or causing them to shy away from being roped

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