It was probably the hardest thing I've ever gone through with my stock. Losses are always tough but we had spent quite a few close years working together.willow_girl said:I must admit I cried when I came to the part about Tears' passing. :waa: I'm glad to hear Bright is still alive and well!
Many pioneers did just that. That's why the milking short horn was so popular. They were a multi-purpose critter in the old dayswillow_girl said:So, heifers can be trained to the yoke?! Maybe I should be doing something with this little Jersey-cross girl of mine!
You bet. In fact, 6 months is usually the right starting time. I started early because I didn't have a clue what I was doing. If it didn't work out, into the stew pot they would have gone. I found that the Holsteins make a great ox but they can be somewhat "spirited" at times. But by a like token they can be very forgiving of a newbie's foibles.willow_girl said:Will a calf that's been raised on its mama (not bottle-fed) respond to training? Both my calves (6 and 4 months) are tame enough for me to walk up and pet them. I'd sure love to find a use for this steer, other than the freezer.
I broke mine to lead with a halter first. Then took one command at a time in halter. Ged'up, Woah, Gee, Haw, Back, Step-over, Come-under (the yoke), Come. I walk on the left (off side) of the ox, halter and lead in the left hand, and rod in my right. I take one command at a time and reward with praise for each correct response and a little switch for errors. I don't go to the next command until the bovine does the present one very well. I TRY not to work them on bad days (mine or the ox's). After the basic commands are down pat I integrate them. Haw! Woah! If you're working a pair of steers lead one off out of ear shot of the other for the initial training sessions.willow_girl said:How does one go about breaking in a young steer? I have a skijourning rig for a large dog that might be big enough to serve as a (temporary) harness if I were to hop right to it.
I have never used a lead and halter once they were trained except in a public situation where someone might of gotten hurt. Oxen can "throw their weight around" on occasion. I know others have. I have had many a ride though, on a drag of logs giving the commands from behind the oxen, instead of on the off side of them.uncle Will in In. said:OX, You have a great site with excellent pictures. I was at an auction where the old man was selling a huge collection of old time wagons and carts. He sold a yoke of 9 year old dark red oxen, and a three year old yoke of jersey oxen that were guided with lines to there halters. The driver got to ride in the cart.