Cops vs cows: Kenai police corral unruly cattle

Editor’s note: This article has been updated with details from the resident who called the cattle incident in to the police department.

Some cattle bent on escape have been returned home thanks to the wrangling efforts of the Kenai Police Department.

The police got a report around 9 a.m. Saturday that several cattle had escaped their fencing near North Forest Drive in Kenai, according to a release from the department.

“The caller reported that the bull was acting aggressively and had charged people,” the release states.

That caller was Brad Lightner, who lives in the Woodland subdivision on North Forest. He spotted a cow, a young bull and an older bull about a block from his house.

“When I saw them coming, I thought, ‘Wow, those are weird looking moose,’” Lightner said.

Lightner said he followed the animals as they moved in the direction of the airport and entered people’s yards. The younger bull was not causing problems, he said, but the older one was behaving aggressively.

“That older bull — a gentleman came out and tried to chase him out of his yard … and that bull went right after him and chased him back into his house,” Lightner said.

That’s when Lightner, who was raised on a farm in Washington, said he knew it was a problem and called the police.

Upon arriving at the scene, officers found the bull “highly agitated” and saw it had broken a mirror off a vehicle and “destroyed a trash can.” Officers contacted the person responsible for the cattle, who sent someone to help, according to the release. A large animal veterinarian was also called.

One of the police officers was charged while trying to corral the bull. He backed away, but not before the bull closed the distance between them, according to the release. The officer shot the bull in defense, giving it a non-life threatening wound.

“As a result of the shot, the bull was injured and stopped his aggressive behavior,” the release states. “The cattle, including the bull, were led back to their corral under their own power.”

Lightner said the police officers were very patient with the animals and with the public gathered around in the area. When the aggressive bull turned its attention to him and one of the officers, Lightner said he had to jump into the back of a police car to get out of the way.

The veterinarian treated the bull’s injury. The party responsible for the animals plans to move the older bull out of Kenai and relocate it somewhere else in Alaska, according to the release. No injuries other than the bull’s were reported in the release.

Lightner said a man was able to put a noose around the cow and lead her back to the paddock the animals came from. The two bulls followed her and they were all put back in the barn, he said.

“The cops were great,” Lightner said. “They were so mellow.”

Reach Megan Pacer at

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