Saturday, April 6, 2013


This was my first year heading to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo with cattle.  In years past, we've gone to show our alpacas.  This was Hailey's first year with a heifer.  I found this sign posted at the show and thought it might be nice to show how the cattle are judged. 
 Chula and Auria rode down with the Plano East FFA group, which I might add is a much nicer ride than our trailer.  :o)  The heifers had to be down at the show on Thursday. 

Hailey had plenty of time to hang out, since she didn't show until Sunday.  She's my animal whisperer.  She loves the animals and quite frankly, they love her too!

 Auria enjoyed chillin' while she waited for her time in the spotlight.  An interesting point is that the calf is not allowed to nurse off of the mom the day they are showing.  The judges want to see the mama's bags full of milk.  Poor baby!  She had to wait until after they got out of the show ring.

 Isaac, another PESH FFA student, volunteered to help with Auria in the show ring, while Hailey walked Chula.  We were pretty nervous, because since Chula had given birth to Auria, she had been quite a handful to manage.  She is a very protective mom!  However, Hailey had taken the two of them to a show in Greenville the weekend before and it proved to be successful.  Chula was on her best behavior for this show!

The handler must get the animals to "set up" for the judge to see them.  It is much like showing horses and alpacas, too.  You want their neck to be held high and their back nice and flat.  Their feet need to be in a stance with one back foot slightly set back from the other.  The handler's get their animals to "automatically park" their feet in this stance when they are stopped.  Isaac is trying to get Auria to get in position before the judge comes over.

 One of the other things the handler does is to stroke the cow's belly while they stand.  This keeps both the handler and the animal calm, cool, and collected while they wait for the judge to come by and check them out.  Come to think of it, I kind of like my back scratched, too!  Not my belly so much...

Looking good as the judge walks by checking out the competition.  Notice the stance of all of the animals (except for the last one...they were struggling a bit that day).

 We anxiously awaited the judges decision on what place everyone would get!

It's finally official!  Hailey, Chula and Auria got third place!  Whoo hoo!!!  Congrats to all of the girls!
Auria is happy to finally get to nurse off of her mama again!  Yay!  The end of a successful day!
Of course, it wouldn't be right to go to the rodeo and not get to take in some rides.  Harrison got to head over to the amusement park side and get in some rides before it was all said and done.  This was one of his favorite rides.  His smile looked like it was a mile wide!
 Harrison also thinks we need one of these on the property.  Uh...NOT!  Maybe when he collects that check for his prize winning poultry....   :o)

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