OK, ranchers, almost every western movie I’ve seen has at least one cattle stampede.

How often does this actually happen, if ever, on a ranch?

I have been around cows my whole life and my family has a small cattle farm now. Cows have mini stampedes pretty frequently. Something could spook them and they all move quickly as a herd like they tend to do. However, while it is dangerous to stand in front of them like that, they generally don’t run very far. It would take a big western heard rather than the groups of 50 or so I am used to seeing to look very impressive. However, I question their endurance for a very long stampede. Bulls may be able to a a distance but I can’t see mommas and calves hanging in there very long if the movement is rapid. They are bred for meat output, not fitness.

Funny you should ask. We saw Giant the other night (well, two nights) and I felt the need to commend the actors, directors, producers, et al. for their restraint in showing a whole buncha cattle without doing a stampede scene.

Because, as I explained to my son, it hardly ever happens.

Now, I suppose if you were driving the beasts across the plains to the slaughterhouses of [wherever], they might stampede. It’s possible. I wasn’t around back then.