I have been working with Peaches every evening... Teaching her how to behave on a lead rope, how to stand still, how to be caught, desensitizing her to being touched. Each day has been an uphill struggle. She ran when she saw the lead rope. She pulled when I finally got it on her. She turned white eyed at the brush. She kicked when her legs were touched. It was one step forward and two steps back. But they say that things are always getting imperceptibly better every day, so I stuck to my job.
Tonight, Peaches was laying down in front of the hay manger, chewing her cud as I picked up the lead rope and brush. She lazily looked at me as I opened the gate and stepped onto their straw filled pen. I walked towards her with purpose, but she did not move. Did not break the rhythm of her cud chewing. I clipped the lead rope on her with one swift flick of the wrist. The cow blinked. Chewed cud.
I groomed her with a medium stiff bristle brush; each stroke sweeping a day's worth of dust from her now satin-like coat. She did not get up from her position. All four feet were curled beneath her like a cat. I think she would have purred if she could have. Instead she chewed her cud.
I finished up and she let me slip the lead rope off as easily as if she was an old matron cow. Her eyes followed me as I left the pen and put the rope and brush away. She did not move. Did not break the rhythm of her cud chewing.
Peaches is a beautiful cow. And to think what was hiding beneath that layer of filth when I first bought her... Amazing.