Denied horse, girl trains cow to jump

Lilac is calm, likes long walks and river swims, and can jump four and a half feet -- and she's a cow.

Hannah Simpson was 11 years old when she started training the 6-month-old heifer. Now the pair are a daily sight walking along the outskirts of a town near South Island, New Zealand.

Simpson, now 18, has been bucked from Lilac too many times to count.

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"I have always loved jumping, I always wanted to do show-jumping on a horse," Simpson told The Guardian. "And Lilac was always jumping out of the cow shed when she was young so I think she likes it, too. We started her off with stepping over logs and it just got bigger and bigger."

Simpson tried riding Lilac with a saddle once, but that did not work out well. So they ride bareback with a halter and stick to prod Lilac along when needed.

Simpson, who works on a dairy farm, said she has tried riding other cows, however, without much success.

While Simpson got a horse two years ago, she still rides Lilac.

"I don't think she would behave if we took her anywhere but home. And I don't need to compete. She is more special than a horse, more rare."