We bet we know a whole lot of things about cows that you never heard before. We have cow folklore, cow jokes, cow mythology, and plenty of information to share with you!
Q: Why do cows wear bells?
A: Because their horns don’t work!
You probably think cows are just called cows. Or rather, you know that lots of them are called cattle, they move in a herd, and male cows are called bulls. But there’s more to it than that! Cows are among the animals called ungulates. Ungulates use four hoofed feet to support and balance their weight. Their subfamily is called Bovinae, and you’ve probably heard the word “bovine” before meaning cow-like.
Q: Why did the cow jump over the moon?
A: Because the farmer’s hands were cold!
Cows have been around for a long time. They were domesticated 3,000 years B.C.! Goats and dogs have actually been around longer. Scientists have found stories of cows in mythology-a creature called a Minotaur had the head of a bull and the body of a man. Paintings of cows have been found on rocks of ancient people. Taurus the Bull is the astrological sign for people born from the end of April through most of May-even though the Taurus constellation is best seen in the November sky.
Q: What do you call a cow that doesn’t give milk?
A: A milk dud!
What cows do you know that come from modern times? There was Elsie the Cow, whose picture appeared on some foods made by Borden. Elsie was owned by a Connecticut farmer until the owner of Borden Foods decided she looked like the perfect symbol of dairy foods. Elsie was married to a bull named Elmer, who became famous being stuck on the front of a glue bottle. Their children were Beulah, Beauregard, Lobelia, and Larabee. No cow jokes about that!
Q: What do you get when you cross a cow and a duck?
A: Milk and quackers!
Then there was Ferdinand the Bull, the peaceful cow who just wanted to smell flowers instead of join the bullfights. Maybe you’ve heard of Mrs. O’Leary’s cow, who was unfairly accused of starting the Great Chicago Fire in 1871. Later, Mrs. O’Leary’s cow was found to be innocent, and the Chicago Fire Academy was erected at the barn where the poor blameless cow once lived. No cow jokes about her, either!
A poet named Gelett Burgess wrote a poem in 1895:
I never saw a purple cow;
I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you anyhow;
I’d rather see than be one!
This next verse is one of many penned by people fond of cow jokes and humor-
I’ve never seen a purple cow;
My eyes with tears are full.
I’ve never seen a purple cow;
And I’m a purple bull!
And then Burgess wrote this last bit-
Ah, yes, I wrote the “Purple Cow”-
I’m sorry, now, I wrote it;
But I can tell you anyhow
I’ll kill you if you quote it!
The purple cow has, of course, gone down in history as the mascot of Williams College, and it’s the name of a sports team at a couple places. People also use it to describe an ice cream soda if it’s made with grape pop.
Q: What do cows like to do on dates?
A: They like to go to the Moooovies!
And we can’t resist one last bit of cow humor:
A city lady and her friend were driving through Ohio when she saw some cows.
“What a cute bunch of cows!” she said.
“Not a bunch, herd,” said her friend.
“Heard of what?” asked the lady.
“Herd of cows,” said her friend.
“Of course I’ve heard of cows!” said the lady.
“No, a cow herd,” said her friend.
“What do I care if a cow heard? I have no secrets to keep from a cow!