The hired hand thought there was something unusual about the muscular heifer he helped haul from a cattle auction to a farm in southwest Phoenix.
Poziljon Atakulov, a refugee from Uzbekistan, said he has plenty of experience with cattle, both in Phoenix and in his home country, and wondered why this one would not calm down.
“It was wild, very wild,” he said recently, as he showed a reporter around the 2-acre property where he helps owner Marufjon Ahmedov tend six head of more placid cattle and about three dozen goats.
Atakulov said that after the heifer was released into a corral in June, it struggled with ranch hands, broke down a fence and ran off toward the South Mountain preserve.
It has been running ever since, becoming the talk of bemused Ahwatukee Foothills residents and a source of irritation for their Phoenix City Council representative.
“It just jumped over the fence,” Atakulov said, gesturing toward South Mountain. “I don’t know how it is surviving out there.”
Apparently, the young female cow is surviving pretty well…