Have you ever seen this video of a mule defending his human?

I do occasionally get asked if I have worked with mules. I have not…not that I have anything against them. I have heard that they are smart…but this video really makes that evident!

This is one of those videos that shows a true partnership between an animal and human.

It would be an understatement to say that this guy knows his job!



  1. Sheila on February 1, 2015 at 12:22 am

    Some of the comments make me REALLY REALLY sad how far a lot of people have gotten from agriculture. Honestly, he is taking care of the calves. It takes just a few minutes. Do you NOT do “bad” things to kids? Do they get shots?

    Just really sad how some really cant THINK thru their emotions. After these few minutes, the whole thing is forgotten. The Mule is keeping the man safe from the mama, doing it’s job wonderfully.

  2. Amy on December 12, 2014 at 11:51 pm

    Thank Stacy for posting this! You created quite a discussion! There used to be quite a few Mules raised in the SYV. George Chamberlain….

  3. Bobbie on July 8, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    terrible vider! This man is torchering the calf and the mom. what is going on?

    • katzarr on July 11, 2014 at 12:51 am

      VERY TRUE; the mule is not interested in “protecting” the man, the mule is just trying to capture the calf,; what a crock; the only reason this is on the internet, is because the man wanted to have the vid go Viral,; or whatever you call it.; should not take but just a few minutes to treat the calf.; not necessary for all the physical contact with the calf from the mule,; the calf was abused, as far as I am concerned,; people who have not worked around/with cattle/horses, do not KNOW any better,; do not believe everything you see,; things can be/and are, deceptive. <3

      • Sandy on May 13, 2015 at 2:57 am

        Can you count how many different calves he treated?

      • TJM on September 29, 2021 at 7:18 am

        I agree: this did not have to go on for as long as it did. The man was holding onto the calf for a lot longer than necessary just for the sake of the video. At one point when charged by the mule the cow actually trod on the calf while trying to get away, and damaged the calf´s neck. Not impressed by his animal husbandry skills sorry.

  4. Lori B. on July 7, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    Anyone who knows what they are talking about can tell you the whole ‘doctoring’ thing took WAY too long. It’s great that the mule is there to watch the guys back, but seriously, just walk the rope, throw the calf, do your thing and get out of there. Joint ill may be the least of this calf’s concerns after this. Ridiculous. This guy was certainly more concerned with his video going viral, than he was with proper herd management. And yes, I have done it.

    • katzarr on July 7, 2014 at 11:32 pm

      TOTALLY agree… <3 with you Lori B.

  5. Farmgirl on July 6, 2014 at 4:17 pm

    Wow, I grew up on a farm with cattle and I wasn’t horrified by what is going on but I was annoyed by the fellow taking a whole lot longer than he needed to get the job done. It does show a lack of compassion.

    What does horrify me is the hateful tones that some “video defenders” use against other human beings. Calling people who don’t agree with you culls is uncalled for.

  6. Christine Fox. on July 6, 2014 at 5:16 am

    Love the videos!!

  7. Kim on May 14, 2014 at 9:47 pm

    In many parts of the US, mules and donkeys are used to protect the herds. Couple of examples: I worked on a 60,000 acre sheep, cattle and horse ranch in Wyoming for many years. Obviously all were “free range” given the size of the place, fenced and some cross fencing. The ranchers put a mule with different groups of sheep, or cattle. Coyotes are notorious for killing newborn lambs; the mule/s kill the coyotes, even wolves. Had a small working farm of my own in S Georgia; used 2 donkeys to protect my cattle/calves and goats. Mules will protect horse herds too (again, S Georgia) killing a stranger (human or otherwise) if it invades the “territory” Mules are very intelligent and actually do make good riding animals as well as protectors.

  8. Holly on April 24, 2014 at 10:58 am

    My maiden name is Westfall! I wonder if we could be related?

  9. Lee mayberry on April 9, 2014 at 9:00 am

    I can’t believe the stupidity of some of the comments. On a large ranch the calves need attention at timmes. They may be far off and you can’t as one put it build a temp catch pen. Lol
    If you do t rope them and check them for navel ill the infection travels to the knee and then lames it causes to stop nursing and it dies a slow painful death.l but oh I guess some of you idiots would rather that happen than seperate the cow calf for a bit. Cattle live in the moment and will not be affected by this after it is over. You people amaze me as far as I am concerned you are a bunch of culls. Hate to think you are contributing to the human gene pool.

    • Sandy Kimpfbeck on April 9, 2014 at 12:13 pm

      This is a noteworthy video that applauds the mule’s training and you have to give it credit for that , but for folks to ask for more information on what’s happening with the calf is also a natural response , especially when it seems to struggle after accidentally getting trampled by it’s mother after a little showboating with the mule’s owner pulling off it’s bridle – if he paid more attention to the calf’s position and less on making a bragging video , that accident may not have happened . Sad thing about posting anything and leaving it open for all to respond , some peoples’ comments turn needlessly hateful . No one asking for more information deserves a personal , hateful attack , but free speech is what life here is all about , so the topic here takes an unexpected turn .

      • Sari Hampton on December 12, 2014 at 2:15 am

        This cowboy was not “showboating” when he removed the bridle from the mule, he was ensuring the mule did not get his feet caught in the reins, and yes it is sad that as a whole, when people see something they do not understand, rather than objectively seeking answers they respond emotionally and more often than not, with criticism. Ignorance is not bliss. If you watch the video closely you will see that there are several calves being attended to. I applaud this practice: it ensures the ongoing health of the herd; it actually reduces the stress on the animals; and keeps the overheads down for the farmer which in turn ensures a viable business – wins all round. As for the mule being trained for this task, there is certainly an element of that here, however mules and donkeys have an innate and compelling instinct to protect newborns. Thank you Stacy for sharing this, it is most definitely not embarrassing. 🙂

        • Sandy Kimpfbeck on December 13, 2014 at 12:02 am

          Yup , just what I thought would happen . Thanks for picking me , Sari .In some clips there’s more walking around and less getting to task , no attempt at efficiency , to allow for more footage of the mule in action , the star of the clip . Note how long some of those calves spent with a tight rope around their neck , some of them going limp from the prolonged strangulation. I wonder if they ever went back to assess the trampled calf’s injuries , which might be part of decent ranch management .

      • Sandy on May 13, 2015 at 2:48 am

        Right on!

      • Sandy on May 13, 2015 at 2:51 am

        I was meaning to reply to Sari Hampton’s comment

    • Joe on April 14, 2014 at 10:40 pm

      I have to agree, amazing how many softies are commenting. sometimes what looks a little rough isn’t, it’s a do or die thing with a lot of livestock.. spend a week on a farm of any kind, you’ll understand.

      • Sandy on May 13, 2015 at 2:54 am

        Or spend a day behind the house in an auction yard…

  10. Anna on April 9, 2014 at 3:47 am

    I actually hate seeing this! The poor cow is just trying to get back to it’s calf and protect it, and make sure it’s ok, as any mammalian mother would do. As a mother I can totally empathise the distress the cow and calf are going through. Yes the mule is doing a ‘great’ job and I understand the guy has to tag and drench or whatever, but I’m sorry, any mum who is also an animal lover would find this distressing. It’s the reality of farming I guess. Viva vegetarianism!

    • Shaitanjr on July 5, 2014 at 8:22 pm

      I’m fully with you! *mother at heart* I surely can understand that somebody is looking if the calf is ok, but it doesn’t has to be like that. Nobody knows how deep this goes in emotion. I mean, would somebody take a human child away and beat the mother if she wants to look after her child? I’m sure this would not be possible. Cows feel like us. Have you noticed whales are more able to feel with others than we do? Their brain is bigger and those feeling areas are three times bigger than in humans brains. So stop telling animals don’t feel and understand a situation like us! They need not show their emotions as they would be easily killed in nature when they show how disturbed they really are.
      Sorry for my bad english.

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