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Rules of behaviour when crossing fields of grazing livestock

Mother cows can be very dangerous for unmindful hikers.

Grazing cows, jaunty goatlings, woolly sheep - what a lovely and quaint view, isn't it? Well sure, from a distance - please avoid any direct encounter with the animals!
Mother animals have a strong maternal instinct and may protect their young aggressively; especially mother cows can be very dangerous for unmindful hikers.

Therefore, always be aware of the behaviour of those animals, and observe the following safety rules when entering the cattle fields (fenced or open):

  • Do not leave the marked hiking trail.
  • Do not pet the young animals, do not approach them unnecessarily.
  • If possible, avoid hiking trails that lead through cattle fields.
  • Keep your dog on the short leash. If an attack is likely by a grazing animal, let your dog off the leash immediately!
  • Do not position yourself between a cow and its calf.
  • Avoid any direct eye contact with the animals.
  • Do not wield your hiking or walking stick.
  • Do not unpack your rucksack when surrounded by the animals.
  • When grazing livestock approach – stay calm, do not turn your back, and leave the field slowly.
  • Close any gates, so that the animals stay fenced in. Attention: Most wire fences are electrically charged.
  • Pay special attention to bulls: keep a safe distance (40-60 metres) and leave the field.

Have respect for your environment and take any trash back with you.

Enjoy the Engadin nature!

(Reference: Swiss Hiking Trails)

Further information