That’s some neighborhood beef.
It’s not a string of robberies or vandalism that is riling up residents of the ritzy Evergreen neighborhood in San Jose, Calif. Homeowners on Whitetail Lane are furious over new unwelcome visitors: a herd of cows.
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For the last two months, according to KTVU and the Mercury News, cattle have been moseying onto Evergreen’s streets and yards at night and fleeing before sunrise. During these overnight visits, the bothersome bovines tear up manicured lawns, emit incessant mooing that keeps residents awake and leave behind a parting gift: giant piles of poop.
Homeowner Tam Quach estimated he’s spent $600 fixing broken sprinkler heads and too much time cleaning up manure. Up to half a dozen cattle will trample across his lawn in one go. “It’s been almost every night, if not every night,” he told the Mercury News.
Locals are also worried about their safety: There have been several incidents where the heifers have hurled themselves at community members who were trying to shoo them away. “They ran toward us,” Quach said. “We turned on the sprinklers, but they just stood there and took a shower.”
The owner or source of the cows is an open question. Quach said he has never seen anyone wrangle the livestock. “This situation is really hard for us,” agitated neighbor Soraia Bakhtiari added. “We pay all this money to live in a nice neighborhood.”
Quach said he and others sought help from the city. But it wasn’t until Tuesday that an animal control officer was dispatched to Whitetail Lane and an investigation into the identity of the cattle owner began.
Capt. Jay Terrado, the interim division manager of San Jose Animal Care and Services, said he understood the residents’ frustration. “You can’t deal with cows on your own,” Terrado told the Mercury News.
The department will try to find the owner and ensure he or she has the correct permits — as well as enforce a city ordinance that requires big animals to stay within designated enclosures.
Local councilwoman Sylvia Arenas also offered her support during a difficult situation. “Evergreen has a long and proud history of ranching and grazing,” Arenas said. “But that should never include people’s front yards.”