Around 75 cows had a fleeting taste of freedom last week, barreling down a highway and disrupting traffic after escaping from an Indiana farm.
“It’s really important to note, these cows weren’t just walking, they were at a full gallop, if you will,” LaPorte County Sheriff’s Capt. Derek Allen told the South Bend Tribune.
Melissa Kuczmanski, who was driving with her son on U.S. 35 near the town of Kingsbury when the herd of 10-month-old Holsteins dashed past them on Saturday afternoon, caught the spectacle on video.
“It was kind of a joyous moment; I was looking for the universe to send me some really cool wildlife sightings, and boom,” she told the Tribune.
She noted that the cows were peaceful and no motorists were in danger “as long as you pulled over and let them pass.” galong
The sight was especially unusual because the animals stayed together and ran as a group for several miles, Rick Welsh, the owner of the farm, told The Farmer’s Exchange. Cows usually scatter and go in different directions in these kinds of situations, he said.
“These guys were on a mission,” Welsh said.
That mission, however, may never be accomplished. Allen, along with other law enforcement, firefighters and passersby, corralled the rebellious young cows and returned them to Welsh’s farm, where he raises them to be sold as dairy cattle.
Welsh suspected the animals may have gotten out after a prankster opened a gate, but he didn’t know for sure.
Whatever prompted their mass exit, the Holsteins follow in the hoofsteps of other cows who made headlines after trying to make their own way in the world.
In 2018, a cow being led to a slaughterhouse-bound truck in Poland fled, busted through a metal fence and broke a farm worker’s arm before swimming to an island where she evaded capture for weeks. When she was finally recaptured, she died from stress.
The following year, a cow named Betsy escaped from a rodeo and retreated into the Alaskan forest. Since then, outdoor enthusiasts periodically reported seeing a mysterious cow in the woods, and Betsy earned the nickname “ghost in the darkness.”