My Daddy Is a Real Cowboy


1 I live on a ranch with my family. My daddy is a real cowboy! Daddy and I laugh and laugh when we see cowboys on TV. They are always shooting and riding their horses as fast as they can. My dad and I know what real cowboys do.

2 My daddy gets up very early every morning before I wake up. He takes care of the cattle and other animals on the ranch. When the grass gets short in one field, he moves the cattle to better feed. Sometimes he works on the fences. I like to help him whenever I can.

3 Daddy can rope just like the cowboys on TV, but we use a squeeze chute to work the calves for branding. Daddy says that it’s easier on them.

4 In the fall we brand the baby calves to show that they belong to us. Some ranchers use new types of brands called electric or freeze brands. We still use the old kind, but we use gas burners to heat branding irons instead of a campfire. It’s much faster.

5 There aren’t many cattle drives anymore. Today huge trucks haul the cattle when they need to be moved away from the ranch.

6 The gear used on horses is called tack—saddles, bridles, bits, and saddle blankets. It has hardly changed over the years. Cowboy gear—hats, boots, chaps, vests, belts, and spurs—hasn’t changed much either.

7 One day each week Daddy and I put away our cowboy gear, put on our suits, and go to Church with our family. Real cowboys know that that’s where they should be on Sunday.

8 As you can see, my daddy is a real cowboy. And I’m a cowboy too!

[illustrations] Illustrated by Dale Kilbourn