Moo-dy heifer blues
Castle Rock heifer in bad mood comes in last at stock show
She was about 1 ½ years old and very pregnant, and not feeling so well, this day.
But the cow show must go on, her big moment, a championship cow class at the National Western Stock Show Jan. 20. Even so, Lacy, a white-colored shorthorn, showed her displeasure.
“She's in a really bad mood today,” said Rachelle Quinn, 16, owner of Lacy, who was busy throwing her big head around and bellowing.
Lacy did not seem to take the time to appreciate being out of her Douglas County pasture nor being “hoteled” on straw beds in the stock show's Beef Palace along with other top cattle in the country — competitors from Texas, Iowa and so on.
Quinn, who has known Lacy since she was a baby calf, knows her moods and still loves her, though. Lacy on her better affectionate days will lick Quinn in the face.
Quinn once had horses, but liked being lower.
“I'm afraid of heights,” she said.
She likes being grounded with her about 1,400-pound cows, which are also, on most days, gentler than horses, she said. Quinn said she wants to be a cattle-genetics expert someday, and maybe a veterinarian.
This day, bad mood developing on both sides, Quinn still managed to shampoo Lacy and blow-dry her. But she decided not to even try to clip Lacy's coat for the upcoming championship shorthorn late-spring yearling heifer class.
When Lacy is testy, “she can kick and even try to stomp someone,” said Quinn's dad, Craig Quinn, a horseshoer, and co-owner of Quinn Ranch in the Castle Rock area.
His daughter, a Douglas County High School sophomore, didn't need the pain. After all, she already has had to have major surgery on her nose and miss school because of a steer she owns that liked to purposely butt her in the head.
So Rachelle Quinn gave Lacy space. But to make Lacy presentable, she still managed to do a little combing and with a special aerosol spray — a product called tail adhesive — gave her a proper cow-tail-do. Some of the cow's coat needs to stick straight-up, Mohawk style, in places.
Other necessary improvements: Lacy was changed out of her everyday halter and into her $50 leather cow-show halter. Quinn's required dress: a button-down show shirt — and clean pants, in this place where the floor is a muck minefield.
So on Quinn led a reluctant Lacy around the show ring, but that adage that “attitude is everything” seemed to apply this day.
Lacy, out of 11 competitors, came in last.
“She was being a brat (in the show ring),” Rachelle said later.
Lacy reportedly refused to put her hooves in the proper position to be viewed by the judge, and continued to toss her beautiful bovine head around like it was all about her.
But all was not lost.
Roxy, another Quinn heifer and a pasture mate of Lacy's, won the championship in another class. She reportedly had more flash, a prettier clipped coat, among other things — and perhaps was a bit more polite.