Being a country boy I'm not exactly unfamiliar with livestock but that familiarity can get you hurt. Like so many mishaps the words that come to mind are: It's my own fault....I know better than that. I've been taking care of a neighbor's cows while he is on vacation. Something I do once in a while. Nothing too demanding really just move them from pasture to pasture and water them if they don't have access to a pond. I'd hardly even call it work. Heck I enjoy being around cattle and kinda enjoy it to be honest. The cows are really cooperative and docile and they've been around people so much they're more like pets. Anyway, today I was going to move them to a pasture that has a pond and more shade since it is going to be so hot over the next few days. Hardly a dangerous job and something I have done hundreds of times. Well I opened up the gate and the cows started to wander over to head to the new pasture. I noticed a heavy wire sticking out and a sharp piece of metal on the gate and since it is a quite narrow gate I figured I had better clip off the wire and bend the metal so a cow wouldn't snag itself on it. The cows were some distance away from the gate so I got my pliers and went to work fixing it. The cows got to the gate but they were leisurely passing through single file and I thought I would be fine working to try to fix the offending metal and wire. I was kneeling down finishing up when I heard a commotion sort of a rumble. Something had startled the cattle and they started to all push through the gate at once. I quickly tried to stand up but got pinned between the gate and post and the cows. I got crunched really good. Very hard. Several times. I'm a big guy at around 6'7" and 290 but that is nothing compared to a cow. Cows hit far harder than any football player that I encountered and I wasn't wearing pads. I managed to get up and over the gate and away from the cows but I was hurting. I'm not sure what scared them exactly. The only thing I saw were an abundance of horseflies. They were fine once they got in the other pasture and had a few minutes to calm down. My knee got torqued pretty good and my hip was really sore and I knew I had cracked a rib at least. The pain was pretty intense especially in my side so I figured a trip to the ER was in order. A few x-rays later the doc proclaimed I had 3 cracked ribs, sprained my lower back, seriously bruised my hips and probably tore my MCL,ACL and possibly tore my meniscus (sp?). Basically tore my knee up worse than it was before which was bad enough because I already had tears in the ligaments. Wrenched my shoulder pretty good too but he said they can't tell much about that damage until the swelling goes down. He told me I was very lucky I didn't break my pelvis and puncture a lung. I'll probably have an MRI on my knee next week. It was already a mess so I'm curious to see how much worse it is. Might have to have my shoulder imaged also if it isn't any better. Oh well, I've been hurt worse and the pain is quite bearable with some medication. Could have been much worse. A broken pelvis can kill you. Anyway, just use my little accident as a reminder to not get too complacent around your livestock. Remember to always leave yourself an out and never turn your back on them. I knew better but figured I could get away with it just this once. Stupidity hurts and rightly so. Lucky I didn't fool around and kill my silly ass.