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The Grazier’s Vow – Do You Have One of Your Own?

By   /  July 2, 2018  /  Comments Off on The Grazier’s Vow – Do You Have One of Your Own?

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These are the principles Don Ashford uses every day to be a better grazier. What would you add?

On Oct. 3, 2016 an article I wrote entitled Stupid Is As Stupid Does was published on the On Pasture web site. This was just a simple tale of one of the many mistakes that I have made in the cow business over the years. Hopefully I have learned from these mistakes and do not make them over and over again. The simple truth is a problem was created that caused me to waste a lot of hay and feed that should have never been used at all. I will not tell the whole sad story here, but will just say I have learned from it.

On Oct. 4, 2016 Chip Hines was kind enough to comment on the article and add his insight and knowledge to the subject. What follows is what Mr. Hines named the Ranchers Vow:

From this day forward I pledge to support my tractor, pickup, hay machinery, chemical, feed and pharmaceutical dealers through good times and bad through drought, blizzard, flood, low prices and high interest, till death do us part.

After reading this I began to think of all of the inputs that we have come to believe it is impossible to operate without. And then I came to realize that we do not depend on most of these things. Then it finally came to me that those of us who consider ourselves to be graziers should have our own vow. So for your consideration this is what I call the Grazier’s Vow.


I am not foolish enough to believe that everyone will agree with what I believe to be the main reason other than weather cattle operations in our country are not as profitable as they could and should be today. We cannot control the weather and have very little control of the prices we receive when we sell. So the question becomes, “Do you believe that you can build a profitable operation with less inputs?”

Add your ideas for the vow in the comments below. If you enjoy reading Don’s pieces, here’s a collection of most of his articles for On Pasture. Enjoy!

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  • Published: 11 months ago on July 2, 2018
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  • Last Modified: June 22, 2018 @ 10:43 am
  • Filed Under: Consider This

About the author

Publisher, Editor and Author

Kathy worked with the Bureau of Land Management for 12 years before founding Livestock for Landscapes in 2004. Her twelve years at the agency allowed her to pursue her goal of helping communities find ways to live profitably AND sustainably in their environment. She has been researching and working with livestock as a land management tool for over a decade. When she's not helping farmers, ranchers and land managers on-site, she writes articles, and books, and edits videos to help others turn their livestock into landscape managers.


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