Our paleoindian dig was outside of Gunnison, Colorado not too far from a large cattle ranch.
One morning I stepped outside of my little trailer and saw 200 head of cows headed toward the dig area. I watched and watched some more. I felt rather disquieted.
My trailer was parked about 100 feet in the flats below the small knoll where the dig was located.
The cows continued past me and I watched them go miles away, up and over a far off ridge. Whew! Last of them I thought to myself.
About 2 am I heard the chomping, farting, shiting, snorting, bellowing of cows. Then, my trailer, all 700 pounds of it, started to rock and roll. Really rocking and rolling!!
The trailer was being used as a scratching post by those beasts.
I grabbed my little 8 pound Poodle, SILA, put her on a long leash; threw a flannel shirt over my nylon nightgown and added boots to my feet. We tore out the door into the night’s cold.
I started shouting, “hi’ya-- hi’ya” over and over-- SILA "woofed and woofed" as she nipped at those cows to keep them moving. The two of us of worked hard to herd those damn cows to the next pasture.
We were cold and tired when we went back to bed.
Later in the morning the rancher arrived. I told him about the cows using my trailer as a scratching post and how scared I was that my trailer was going to be flipped over. I asked if he had any suggestions as to keeping the cows away.
Looking down at SILA he said, “Get a dog!”