Can Cows Jump: How High, What Circumstances and Interesting Facts


Image Credit: A jumping cow from Pixabay

Cows are one of the most preferred livestock and farm animals. As a result, humans have domesticated them for multiple usages. Now let us learn about some interesting facts about them.

Cows may have a heavy physique, but oddly enough, they can jump. As per animal experts, cows are great when it comes to showing novelty. So, even the slightest change(s) in their familiar environment can excite them, which they express through jovial hopping and jumping. 

Here it is essential to note that according to the experts, cows do not like to jump often and prefer it only in extreme needs. 

So, in this article, we will shed light on the cows’ ability to jump, the height to which they can jump, under what circumstances, and other related facts.

Can cattle jump fences?

Image Credit: Cattle cows from Pixabay

Cattles are referred to as the animals that are domesticated for milk and/or meat. Cattle’s temperament often influences their behavior and other physical traits.

That being said, you may find cattle, like cows, bulls, etc., to jump fences if they get excited to spooked. However, most cases of fence jumping involves cattle’s endeavor to reach the source of water and pasture. 

Cattle can also jump over fences if they try to run away from any potential threat or join the other members of the herd. Nonetheless, it is not a very frequent sight to spot cattle jumping over fences or walls like horses or dogs. 

Are cows good at jumping?

Cows are humble, large, lumbering beasts, weighing around 1200lbs on average. It is pretty hard to imagine animals with such a heavyweight and physique can jump around.

But the reality is cows can jump, and they sometimes can jump pretty high. However, they need some good reasons to show their jumping skills. So, there is no harm to say that cows are good at jumping, but comparing their skill with that of a horse will be unjustified. 

One interesting thing to note here is that cows’ ability to jump has made Luna, a dairy cow, famous. Luna has been trained by Hanna Steinker, her owner, to be ridden like a horse.  

Why do cows jump around?

Cows rarely jump, but you should understand that they are under some extreme conditions in most cases when they do. So, when your cow wants to jump into the air, there must be something important.

Some reasons that may make your cow jump around are as follows:

·        Engaging in a run:

If you engage a cow in a run, you may witness it jump out of excitement. They can amaze you with their excellent jumping skill, especially if being chased. 

·        Happiness:

Although it may not sound much believable, cows can jump out of joy and excitement as well. They may hop and bounce to express their excitement. One such instance can be the sight of fresh fodder or the herd. 

·        To reach out food and water:

It is not surprising to find a cow jumping off the fence to get water or food once they have used the available grass in the existing field. 

·        Threats:

Life-threatening situations may also cause cows to jump and run away. For example, one can witness it during a cow’s walk towards the slaughterhouse. Also, if they are spooked, they prefer to jump and run rather than use their horns to defend themselves. 

Can cows jump high?

Cows are humble and spend most of their days’ grazing. But much like prey animals, they prefer to jump and run when feeling excited or spooked. So, can they really jump high?

The answer to this question depends on how high it is high for you. And also the situation in which the cow is. Yes, cows can jump as high as 7 feet in rare cases, as we have mentioned. But if we compare this with other cattle like horses, it may not be that high.

Also, depending on the cow’s health status and the terrain it is jumping on, the answer to the above question may vary. In addition, pregnant cows and young calves may not jump as high as other healthy cows around them. 

How high can cows jump?

After knowing that cows can jump, the next question that hovers around is how high they can jump? Again, we have some excellent evidence of this in the form of cattle exhibitions.

As we have said, cows only prefer to jump in extreme situations, and they can jump over seven feet high off the ground if needed. This is the height jump that was recorded in the 2013 Bovine Agility Exhibition in Helsinki. But in general, cows can jump four to five feet in height. 

That being said, any height above 4 feet can be strenuous for the cow to jump.

Here it is essential to note that the jumping capacity in cows depends on various factors like their health status, the criticality of the situation, their training, etc. And some cows are specifically trained to jump in cattle exhibitions. 

Can cows jump over fences?

Image Credit: A cow within a fence from Pxfuel

By now, we have learned that cows can jump, whether they prefer it or not. As a result, they are kept within a fenced area to prevent their runways. But can they jump over the fence as well?

According to the experts, a young and healthy cow can quickly jump over a five-foot fence. And some cases, like one in Britain, jumped six feet ad landed on the roof of a house. However, this is a rare case to happen, but not impossible.  

In general, you may not need to construct fences taller than 4.5 feet. But if you have calves or young cows, you may want to build fences a bit taller to contain your cattle. 

Can cows jump over walls?

It may amaze you to see your cow jump, like other a horse or dog. But necessity often pushes them to jump. They can quickly jump a fence of 4 to 5 feet height, but what about the walls?

The above question may leave people scratching their heads. But cows can jump over walls if they are fit and have a strong motivation. But as long as the wall is at least two blocks high and have fence gates or doors to get in and out, they shouldn’t jump and escape. 

Can cows jump over cobblestone walls?

Cows are amazing jumpers when they need to flee from something or get to something. In such situations, they can even jump over a 5 feet high fence. But what about cobblestone walls?

If a cow can jump over cobblestone walls will depend on the height and width of the wall. Although it is not a general sight to find cobblestone walls to contain cattle on a farm, if you decide to build one, make sure to build it at least 54 inches tall. This will prevent the cows from jumping over it.

Also, a cobblestone wall would be solid, which will block the cows’ vision, removing any desire to jump. Without any desire and motivation, chances are less that cows will jump over a cobblestone wall to go to the other side. 

Can cows jump higher than horses?

Image Credit: A horse jumping in a horserace from Pxfuel

Both cows and horses have been human companions for time eternity. Both these animals are raised for meat and other farm needs. But outside these, they are entirely different from each other.

By now, we know that cows can jump when necessary. The maximum height cows can jump is 7 feet, and on average, it is 4-5 feet. However, on average, horses can jump 3-4 feet, and if in competition, they can touch the height of 7- 8 feet. So, looking from an average point of view, cows can jump higher than horses.

That being said, horses have better stamina and can be trained better than cows. Running fast and jumping high is somehow there in horses’ genes. But cows are not meant for these activities. So, comparing these two animals in terms of their jumping capability would not be the right thing to do.

If cows can jump, why don’t they do it often?

Image Credit: Wild horses grazing from Stockvault

Now, something is interesting in exploring the causes of why cows won’t jump despite their ability to do so? Well, there can be more than one reason behind doing so.

The immediate answer to the above question is that jumping can be a risky thing for any animal that weighs 2 tons or more. Although the average weight of cows varies with the breed, it can be as high as 1500lbs. So, jumping up frequently and landing on feet may cause accidents and health hazards.

Other possible reasons for cows not to jump may include:

  • Fragile hooves
  • Unstable legs
  • Clumsy hind legs
  • Huge mass
  • Demotivation
  • Low energy level, etc.

Verdict

To wrap up, we can say that most cattle, including cows, can jump a few feet above the ground under particular circumstances. And in extreme cases, cows have been witnessed to reach a height of 7- feet. 

However, their huge body weight, weak legs, and fragile hooves mostly make them stay on the ground. They prefer to walk rather than jump.  So, if you find your cow jumping into the air, you better inspect the situation, as something significant might be going on.

Atrayee

I am Atrayee, I have extreme passion for the Animal Kingdom and I have written a large number of articles for animal behaviors. I am an Animal Lover by nature and own two Cats.
Exploring new things through learning and unlearning is something that intrigues me a lot. I spend my free time with my husband and two cats. I must say I get to learn a lot of wise things from them! You can catch me on LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/in/atrayee-samaddar-06886567/

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