By Heather Main
That cow can moove! A teen who longed for horse-riding lessons as a child has become an online sensation – after teaching one of her family’s dairy cow to SHOWJUMP.
Hannah Simpson, 19, has been training dairy cow Lilac to be ridden since 2010 – and the pair could now take on horsey rivals – with Lilac managing to jump solid fences over a metre high.
Hannah had always wanted to be able to ride a horse, and when she was very young, she and her brothers used to try and ride sheep on the family farm in Invercargill, New Zealand.
But when she turned 12, she began to bond with one of the dozens of cows the family kept – Lilac – and decided to try hopping on.
Incredibly, Lilac took to being ridden just like a pony – and seven years later, the pair have an unbreakable bond.
Hannah, who now works as a dairy farmer, said: “I have always loved adventures and trying new things, I had always wanted to ride but I didn’t have a horse.
“My brothers and I used to ride our sheep and young steers but it was just trying to stay on as long as we could.
“I starting riding Lilac in early 2010 when she was about six months old and I just turned 12. She was born on our farm in October 2009, and I always loved her. I would spend so much time leading her that it was quite easy to get on and ride.
“I was expecting her to buck but she just trotted forward and then stopped, so from then I started riding her nearly every day.
“I never actually rode a horse until 2012 and I was 14.
“The highest I have jumped her was about a metre, it was the biggest log we could find, that was our favorite, she can jump fences higher than that though.
“I taught another of our cows, Honey, to be ridden too, and I used to ride Lilac or Honey at least once a day, most of the time my younger brother would ride the other and we would jump logs and go for big rides along the river.
“Our family had to move away from the farm and we had to sell all of our herd – Lilac is the only one we kept because I couldn’t bear to part with her.
“She is pretty chilled out most of the time, but she can be stubborn if she dosent want to do something chances are she won’t.
“She is a cow after all and not trained to be like a horse. She loves just hanging out with me and going for rides to new places.”