In the eyes of the law, Richard is just steak. To vegetarian Julie Boldizar, he’s a new pet with beautiful eyes.
The 900-pound Holstein bull crashed into the Boldizar’s 1-1/2-acre rural yard a week ago, tearing down a fence and taking up residence with the family’s cats, dogs, roosters, chickens, a sheep named Madeline and two teenage sons.
Never mind the damage. Boldizar has fallen for the intruder.
“Have you ever looked into the eyes of a cow?” asked Boldizar, whose home is accented with cow knickknacks.
“They’re just beautiful,” she said. “Look at him. How can you eat him? He gives big old kisses, and he has a big old rough tongue like sandpaper, and he’s wonderful.”
Nobody else has claimed the bull, but keeping him may cost the family money because state law mandates that unclaimed stray cattle be auctioned off after 15 days. The statute was intended to keep rustlers from “finding” animals that aren’t theirs.
The family may be able to buy Richard at market value, said Myrlys Williams, a spokeswoman for the state Food and Agriculture Department.
Boldizar has started a “Trust for Richard Bull Fund” at a bank in this Riverside County town 60 miles southeast of Los Angeles.
“I think God gave him to me because this law is so stupid,” Boldizar said.