Why Do Cows Attack Humans

Why Do Cows Attack Humans? This Is Why!

At some point, you might be wondering if cows are friendly animals because of their huge size that can effortlessly kill a human. Maybe you see a cow in the pasture as you are driving or when you walk and pass nearby a farm. Probably this makes you afraid as you are only walking and the cow might chase you. 

Cows are friendly animals. They are also curious creatures. Their behavior depends on how often they interact with humans and other pets. Dairy cows that are milked frequently are much more familiar with humans and more friendly. However, even though cows are friendly, there is still a huge chance that a cow will attack a human. So, why do cows attack humans?

Why do cows attack humans? The reason cows attack humans is because they are threatened and scared. Cows only attack in self-defense. If there is something that scares them, cows usually run away. But if you chase them and you are near them already, cows will not think twice to attack you to scare you away. 

Every animal has their own defense mechanism, including cows. Cows that are scared to death will attack humans. Also, if they don’t know who the human is, they will stay away from that human. However, if cows are used to humans, they will be friendly even to strangers but still, if they feel threatened they won’t hesitate to launch an attack. 

Today, we will talk about cows. We will dig deeper into this topic so that you can understand why cows attack humans even though they are considered friendly animals. If you are ready, let’s get it going!

Do Cows Attack People?

Cows are known to be friendly creatures. Dairy cows that are milked frequently are known to be friendlier because they interact with humans on a daily basis. 

However, even these dairy cows can attack people. Yes! Cows can still attack people even though they are friendly. 

The reason why cows attack people is that some people threaten or scare them. Cows will not think twice to attack a human being if their life is at risk. They do this as their defense mechanism. 

What Causes A Cow To Be Aggressive?

Aggression in cows is usually a result of fear, learning, hormonal state, and past traumas. Aggression between cows is worse than that between bulls. Cows usually use their head as battering rams.

Scared cows will act aggressively to make sure that no one will threaten them. Even humans do this. If we are scared, we act more cautious around our surroundings, making us aggressive. Cows are like this too! 

A learning or naive cow will be aggressive. Everything that is new can be scary, which is why a learning cow will act aggressively because of fear. If it is the first time a cow is in the milking station, the cow might be aggressive. But this only happens if the handler is not experienced.

Getting a cow from other people that has past traumas can be difficult. Because that cow might act aggressively towards its new owner because maybe that cow was beaten or tortured before. This is the other reason why cows are aggressive. They don’t want the traumatic past to happen to them again. 

Usually, aggression in cows is related to poor management practices, confinement, and lack of enrichment.  

If you don’t want your cow to act aggressively toward you or visitors, you should make sure that you interact with your cow consistently. Also, you must avoid things that might scare and traumatize your cow because it will lose trust in you. If your cow loses trust in you, it will act aggressively toward you. 

Can You Get Attacked By Your Cow?

If you are consistently having a good bond with your cow and you interact with your cow always, is it still possible for your cow to attack you? Yes or no?

Yes! It is still possible for your cow to attack you if you scare or hurt them. Hurting your cow is not a good idea because it can lose its trust in you and might attack you to defend itself from you. 

Newborn cows can attack you even if you and their mother cow are friends. The reason why is because these newborn cows are new and do not know you well. Also, if your cow is pregnant, it can act aggressively too because it is a maternal instinct. 

What To Do If A Cow Attacks You?

So, what should you do if a cow tries to attack you? Here are the things that you must do when a cow tries to attack you:

  • Never panic. Cows can pick up your emotional state and may become more aggressive if they sense you are uneasy. 
  • Keep walking and don’t run. Cows tend to match their pace to yours. So if you are running, cows will run too. 
  • Give cows a gentle nudge or shove to alert them to your presence if they come within touching distance. 
  • Make yourself as big as possible. You can stretch your arm and wave them. 
  • Yell the plea, imprecation, or invective of your choice. 

Why Do Cows Chase You?

Like I have said above, cows are curious creatures. If they see you and your dog, cows might come towards you to investigate you. If cows are approaching at a leisurely pace, they are most likely curious. 

If the cow is still following you while you are walking, just keep your pace like that and never run. Like I have said above, cows will imitate your pace. If you are running they will run also.

Do Cows Attack Other Pets?

Yes! Cows attack other pets too. If the animal is scaring the cow, the cow will attack it as an act of self-defense. There is lots of news of cows that are attacking other pets and hurting them. 

So if your pet seems to be bothering your cow, prevent your pet, whether it’s a dog or cat, from going near your cow. Your cow might attack your pet. 

How Many People Do Cows Kill A Year?

According to statistics, cows kill about 15-20 people a year. Cows attacking people are quite rare but still possible. 

Cows kill or hurt people by kicking or trampling. Three-quarters of those incidents are reportedly deliberate attacks. 75% were intentional attacks and one-third of the attacks were from cows that showed previous aggressive behaviors. 

It is your responsibility to make your cow friendly towards you and other people. You must create a good bond with your cow so that your cow will be less likely to act aggressively and lower the chances of hurting other people or pets. 

Final Words

The reason why cows attack humans even though they are considered friendly animals is because of self-defense. Cows that are scared or traumatized will act aggressively to defend themselves. It is essential that you build a strong bond with your cow to prevent it from being too aggressive.