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I had this book when I was about five years old:

Cowboy Andy by Edna Walker Chandler

In the book there's this line after Andy tells Cowboy Sam about the (toy) guns in his suitcase:

"There are no guns on my ranch: we are cowboys, not bad men."

Miss Chandler, you mean good cowboys don't have to worry about intruders, snakes, putting injured animals down, wild predators and rustlers? Cowboys don't go hunting for game off duty? There probably aren't many wild Indian attacks anymore. To me, a cowboy without a shootin' iron is like one without a branding iron.




 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I've gotten out of the habit, but I used to always ride with a .40 strapped to my leg. Snakes, coyote, feral dogs and feral people are out there...
I would ride with a gun (.38 special or .357 maybe) in a hip holster if I were a cowboy :cowboy: or a fanny pack if I were just a non-cowboy rider out in the boonies. There are bad people and bad animals in the world.

The old cowboy guns were .45 Colt Peacemakers, single action. I'd have a stainless modern Colt double action to be prudent. I might also have a Winchester 30-30 saddle-ring carbine lever-action rifle in the scabbard.

Real cowboys also wear ten-gallon hats, not helmets. I would expect to get laughed to high heaven :Angel: if I were to show up for a cowboy job sporting a fanny pack though.
 

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In Canada, it's illegal to carry a handgun. So you would have to have a scabbard & a rifle. Only hunters do that.
 
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Depends on what your doing that day.

I've always wondered what a ten gallon hat is. I picture the character "Hoss" on the show Bonanza. He wore a hat with an open crown that made the hat look big.

I don't know what kind of gun is a "hog leg," either. I've heard that in old westerns.
 

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It wouldn't surprise me either way......around here a lot of trail riders carry guns! Not me, and I ride alone much of the time, but I've seen so many people '"packin" on a ride that it no longer surprises me. :shrug:
 

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Can't say about other areas but where I live...
The "cowboys" do indeed ride armed with a gun on hip.
Feral pig, coyotes, snake, alligator, bear and a host of other predators are not afraid of humans here, some will challenge.
Sorry, but riding with gun in fanny pack does you no good when you have to stop to unzip and retrieve...:icon_rolleyes:
Seconds count when you are confronted with a animal meaning to take you down.

Now, sadly I know there have been times they have had to shoot a cow in the field who had issues to severe and was suffering...we don't do suffering.
Suffering is ended as fast and painlessly as it can be accomplished...a gunshot and suffering has ended.

I don't know if rifles are also kept astride as a everyday tool...
I'm sure in certain areas and doing certain tasks they are present, just not sure it is a everyday-tool on hand here.
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Seconds count when you are confronted with a animal meaning to take you down.


I've seen quite a few wild animals out riding and never felt threatened by ANY of them. Could it happen, sure. But I'm much more likely to die of cancer or a car wreck. I think the risk of wild animals is wayyyyyyyyy over-rated.

I've seen bears 3-4 times........they always ran. Now those are black bear, so grizzlies are probably a whole 'nother kettle of fish! But we don't have those in Arizona.

I've seen badger, rattlesnakes, coyotes, deer, elk.

I love to bugle for elk on horseback during the rut. Last year I was in a hunting store and when I asked the employee where the elk calls were and told him what I was doing he told me I was going to get "horned!" Well, anything is possible I suppose but I've been enjoying the rut by bugling for elk on horseback for 20 years now. :smile: Even the bulls, once they see you are not an elk, are out of there! I've had some cute little elk calves run up within about 20 feet of me though......at that point you are more worried about your horse spooking.

Rattlesnakes have such a bad wrap but I've never had one bother me and I've lived in Arizona my whole life. If you keep your hands out of dark places and keep your dogs away from them, they are generally no problem. They could bite if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time but generally they are peaceful creatures. I always thought it polite that they rattled......like "hey, I'm hear, don't step on me." Most snakes don't do that.

Coyotes are pretty cool. I've had them "shadow me" and follow me on horseback and in the city I saw them following bicyclists. But never saw them as an actual threat. Now for sure they would go after calves or other small livestock. So for a cowboy they could be a problem......not for the cowboy but for his livestock.

No feral hogs or gators here, thank goodness.

I had a javelina circle around me and my horse once, grunting and breathing heavy. That was pretty creepy! Oddly, the horse didn't care. Which was great, because I was a bit worried about it! My Dad, who has hunted them, said their eyesight is poor and it probably had babies to protect. I rarely ever see javelina, and that was the most memorable encounter.


Anyway, the risk of wild animal attacks, at least in Arizona, are pretty remote. Driving a car is much more dangerous and people don't seem to worry much about that.


PS. I've never seen a live mountain lion, I would love to see one! Saw one that got hit by a car once and it was gorgeous.
 

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Seconds count when you are confronted with a animal meaning to take you down.


I've seen quite a few wild animals out riding and never felt threatened by ANY of them. Could it happen, sure. But I'm much more likely to die of cancer or a car wreck. I think the risk of wild animals is wayyyyyyyyy over-rated.

I've seen bears 3-4 times........they always ran.

I've seen badger, rattlesnakes, coyotes, deer, elk.

Rattlesnakes have such a bad wrap but I've never had one bother me and I've lived in Arizona my whole life. If you keep your hands out of dark places and keep your dogs away from them, they are generally no problem.

Coyotes are pretty cool. So for a cowboy they could be a problem......not for the cowboy but for his livestock.

No feral hogs or gators here, thank goodness.

Here feral pig is a big problem.
They rip apart livestock, will go after a horse or dog if they cross paths in some areas, more often than not.
When riding trails, we are very aware of the ground appearance around us and how our horses are acting...
When mine is antsy and jittery it is a justified warning to take notice..

Alligators...well, let us hope he is not in feeding mode or you have a very large and fast adversary chasing you down.

Coyotes...well, last weekend they challenged my neighbor in the pasture.
She pulled her gun and shot the ground in front of it and it took off...but it had a intent in mind with body posture it exhibited. She didn't want to hurt it as she also could see the young, "kits?" waiting a distance away...so looking for food to feed the family.

Snakes, I don't like snakes but they have a purpose here too.
If they leave me alone I do the same. If aggressive they will pay the price...
And...my uncle was walking through his front-yard this past August...and was bit by a rattlesnake.
He lives in a housing development area...not acreage like me.
Never saw it, never heard it..but a strike.
He spent 5 days in the hospital and 2 units of anti-venom that I know of administered...he said it hurt like a son-of-a-gun.
I don't want to find out firsthand...do be careful since rattlers are not just in dark places.

Wildlife are often more afraid or us than we are of them, but that one who is different is not the time you want to encounter and not be prepared to defend yourself...
It ultimately is your life at stake and that of your horse is mounted.
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Absolutely! Where I live you carry a gun anytime you're up in the mountains. We've gone hiking in the very foothills of the mountains before and come across wolves and mountain lion tracks before(Not to mention snakes! Those are everywhere.). My father always carried a pistol with him on his belt, and always kept one in the car whenever we went somewhere just in case. (In Montana it's legal to carry a firearm around w/o a concealed carry as long as it's clearly visible, not sure about other states.)

Most of the cowboys/cowgirls/ranchers I know always carry a gun up in the mountains. Even if it's not for protection - if an animal breaks a leg or injures itself beyond repair - it's better to have a gun than to not in those situations. All the range-riders I know usually carry pistols or a 22 as well during the summer while they're up in the hills.
 

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I'll carry a gun when I get a concealed carry permit. There are hogs in my area, but when riding in the woods I've never had snakes or coyotes or anything bother me. We do have bears, bobcats, cougars, and things like that, but I've only ever seen a bobcat once and never a bear in our area.

"Feral people" as someone said, would be my main concern.


I don't know what kind of gun is a "hog leg," either. I've heard that in old westerns.
I'm pretty sure it's referring to a sawed off shotgun or rifle. The barrel is cut down so it can be worn like a pistol. It's still rather big and cumbersome compared to the colt peacemaker models common at the time, but a lot of "cool" characters in westerns seem to have them.

Another similar term is "mare's leg", which was solely used to describe gun used by Steve McQueen's character in the western, "Wanted: Dead or Alive". It's actually a good show and I'm mad that it's not available on Amazon Prime.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'll carry a gun when I get a concealed carry permit. There are hogs in my area, but when riding in the woods I've never had snakes or coyotes or anything bother me. We do have bears, bobcats, cougars, and things like that, but I've only ever seen a bobcat once and never a bear in our area.

"Feral people" as someone said, would be my main concern.




I'm pretty sure it's referring to a sawed off shotgun or rifle. The barrel is cut down so it can be worn like a pistol. It's still rather big and cumbersome compared to the colt peacemaker models common at the time, but a lot of "cool" characters in westerns seem to have them.

Another similar term is "mare's leg", which was solely used to describe gun used by Steve McQueen's character in the western, "Wanted: Dead or Alive". It's actually a good show and I'm mad that it's not available on Amazon Prime.
Can you open carry in Florida?

If I were a cowboy I would have no problem with open hip-holster carry on private land or open range. The sight of a cowboy's sporting a gun rig is iconic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I would ride with a gun (.38 special or .357 maybe) in a hip holster if I were a cowboy :cowboy: or a fanny pack if I were just a non-cowboy rider out in the boonies. There are bad people and bad animals in the world.

The old cowboy guns were .45 Colt Peacemakers, single action. I'd have a stainless modern Colt double action to be prudent. I might also have a Winchester 30-30 saddle-ring carbine lever-action rifle in the scabbard.

Real cowboys also wear ten-gallon hats, not helmets. I would expect to get laughed to high heaven :Angel: if I were to show up for a cowboy job sporting a fanny pack though.
I absolutely would never work for any rancher with a no-guns policy. If I were to own my own ranch, hired hands would be actually required to be armed on duty and trained to shoot and handle a gun safely as a condition for hire.
 

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Depends on what your doing that day.

I've always wondered what a ten gallon hat is. I picture the character "Hoss" on the show Bonanza. He wore a hat with an open crown that made the hat look big.

I don't know what kind of gun is a "hog leg," either. I've heard that in old westerns.
didn't cowboys use their hats upside down to let their horses drink out of it?
 

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In my country it is forbidden, sadly. But I do ride with a fanny pack, lol. :D The only big predator here is the wolf and I have never encountered one. We have one species of posionous snake and also never encountered one. The only nasty thing you can encounter are annoying people, but I hit them in the face whit my whip and fanny pack. Problem solved.
 

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Why would they do that? If a cowboy can get water into a hat, a horse can reach down and get it. Letting a horse drink from onees hat does not happen.
Your point definitely still stands, but I swear that I've seen at least one Western movie where the cowboy and his horse are walking through a desert, they stop to rest in some shade, the cowboy takes out his canteen, he takes a swig and then empties the rest into his hat so his horse can drink his fill.

On another note, a gelding I used to ride actually knew how to drink out of a plastic bottle! I discovered that talent of his by accident one day, I was draining my water bottle dry after a long, hot ride and he nearly snatched it out of my hands! He'd use his upper lip to grab the bottle, grip it between his front teeth and then he would tip his head up and let the contents flow right down his throat!

Apparently I wasn't the first person he'd done that to either and rumor had it that his previous owner's grandkids had trained him to do all sorts of tricks....
 

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Your point definitely still stands, but I swear that I've seen at least one Western movie where the cowboy and his horse are walking through a desert, they stop to rest in some shade, the cowboy takes out his canteen, he takes a swig and then empties the rest into his hat so his horse can drink his fill.

On another note, a gelding I used to ride actually knew how to drink out of a plastic bottle! I discovered that talent of his by accident one day, I was draining my water bottle dry after a long, hot ride and he nearly snatched it out of my hands! He'd use his upper lip to grab the bottle, grip it between his front teeth and then he would tip his head up and let the contents flow right down his throat!.
Ok. In that case I could see it.

I have had to dig a hole in spots where the ground was damp but the water essentially gone, but I did that with my boot heel.

I had a horse that liked apple cider. If I rode to the area cider mill for a cup of share with him. He'd bite the cup and raise his head. Spilled a lot. The family had a giant photo of him doing that in the mill.
 

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I've tried giving my horse water from my cowboy hat. An entire quart canteen of water doesn't fill a cowboy hat very far. To be honest...Mia slurped a little out, then sneezed boogers all over my hat. Nothing quite like putting a cowboy hat covered in horse boogers back on your head....

Haven't tried it since. YMMV.
 
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