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Old 01-08-2001, 12:09 AM
RedPenner RedPenner is offline
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 1
Why do bulls paw the ground before they charge? My husband says it's like a rattlesnake rattling, to warn the potential victim of what is to come.
Old 01-08-2001, 01:03 AM
Fyodor Fyodor is offline
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Canada
Posts: 614
I think your husband's right

Lots of animals bluff and bluff charge. I think bulls are just showing what's on their mind - they are contemplating a charge and demonstrating what their legs are capable of.

I got charged by a moose cross-country skiing. She was about twenty feet away and I tried to pass her by. I heard her coming and looked up and she was coming at me full speed. She stopped about four feet away and turned back (as I also proceeded to do). (I knew she was female because she was with a large perhaps yearling calf.)
Old 01-08-2001, 01:07 AM
Zenster Zenster is offline
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Silicon Valley
Posts: 9,515
Whether charging or not, an animal tends to "mark" the area of combat.

Ergo, the bull scuffing the ground to reveal freshly turned, scent laden earth.
Old 01-08-2001, 06:07 AM
Join Date: Jan 2001
Posts: 203
my cat paws, except he usually does it after he wakes up and is still a little tired

he will stretch his arms out and paw on somebody or just the wooden floor until you shoo him away
Old 01-08-2001, 12:28 PM
DougC DougC is offline
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: IL, USA
Posts: 5,209
- - - Cattle, horses and deer all do it, usually when they're mad. No wait- not mad; let me change that to -angry. (Can't say mad cattle anymore. Worries folks.)
- Incidentally there's a drunken hillbilly dare/activity named "calling deer" that goes like this: if you come upon a stag during mating season and it doesn't immediately run away, you lower your head, scratch the ground a couple times with your foot and loudly huff/exhale through your nose once. Taking a step forward now and then helps too. Often it will run away, but sometimes the deer will charge you. -The instructions get rather sketchy at this point. Stand up straight to avoid antlers in your eyes. -And try to look dignified; any friends watching will retell this story for years to come. Also remember that even if it doesn't charge but doesn't run away, you have to keep watching it as you move away because if you turn your back on it, it may. - MC


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