A beautiful day on the mountain with lush green meadows, deep blue sky, light bee buzzing and the monotonous ringing of cowbells. This all belongs to the idyllic Alpine summer holiday. On the hiking trail however, a herd of cows has settled down to enjoy their leisurely siesta in the summer heat. How should you behave when around these animal milk suppliers? “Around” is the key word, because it is best to take a wide berth around the herd with no great fuss or unnecessary nervousness. Under no circumstances should you irritate the animals or show fear – simply show “normal” behaviour and then the cows and horses also stay sociable!
Walking with a dog
Those who go hiking with their dog should take notice of and watch out for cows and horses. Generally, the dog should be on a leash on the mountain and especially when crossing a pasture. This prevents the dog chasing or provoking the cows. Especially when mothers are in the herd with their calves, they will defend their young and go on the attack. If a cow shows suspicious and aggressive behaviour, let the dog off its leash for its own protection, send it out of danger and slowly move towards the fence.
Respect your limits
“Caution grazing livestock!” is often seen on signs when entering a pasture. The sign is not there to scare you but to be a reminder that this is the habitat of generally peaceful cows. Hikers and bikers thus enter the animals living room, so to speak and showing understanding and respect help keep all parties safe. The initiative “Respect Your Boundaries” shows an informative video on the topic of “Hiking with the dog” on its website and also has general rules of conduct in dealing with grazing livestock. In the brochure “I’m stronger” are all clearly explained tips and rules of conduct.