Our two bulls are usually mild-mannered unless they are near each other or another bull, or don’t have plenty of female companionship to keep them occupied at their life’s purpose. Actually, they’re just normal bulls.
Since we do fall calving, the bulls breed our cows at the ranch where they all spend the winter. The boys are occupied and deliriously happy for a couple of months. Then, the breeding slows down but not the testosterone production, and boredom sets in. They realize, “Hey! There’s competition here! I’m gonna kick his butt and let him know who rules!”
In my book, I called this “Bored Bull Syndrome.” To keep these expensive, egotistical, beefy hunks from seriously injuring each other, when Bill is certain all the cows have been bred, he loans out the bulls to a couple of neighbors to breed their cows.
After we finished working and hauling cattle a few weeks ago, Bill rearranged and reinforced the corral pens in preparation for bringing the bulls home from neighbors. They would need a “getting reacquainted” period after not seeing each other since early last spring. Bill put them in adjacent corral pens, one with a cow and the other with a replacement heifer to hopefully provide feminine calming influence, i.e., to keep them from getting bored and going at each other. The cow hadn’t yet calved and the replacement heifer had already come into heat a few days prior, so they were provided as company, not for breeding.
It didn’t take long for the boys to figure out their female companions were decoys, not provided for their breeding pleasure. We heard them bellowing bull smack at each other. When I went to the corral to take photos of the bulls in their pens, I found fence panels scattered on the ground and the boys engaged in head-to-head combat, pushing each other back and forth.