18. Aug 2020

How to behave around grazing animals

In harmony with Austria’s mountain pastures and meadows.

It is a wonderful day in the mountains of Lech. Blue skies and the sun is shining, the hiking trail is idyllically situated in the midst of lush green meadows and the ringing of cow bells is getting louder and louder. A few meters further on, a couple of cows block the hiking trail and begin to take notice. What to do?

10 Rules for a safe holiday around cattle

The alpine pastures of Lech are not only for hikers, nature lovers and cyclists a special highlight of the Lech mountain summer. Cows and other grazing animals also enjoy their alpine summer on the lush green pastures in the beautiful mountain world of the Arlberg.


Unfortunately it is often forgotten that we are only guests in the habitat of the grazing animals and economic area of the alpine farmers. A good cooperation, respect and the correct handling of grazing animals are therefore very important. Which is why the Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism, together with the Chamber of Agriculture, the Chamber of Commerce and the Alpine Association, has launched the initiative ” Together safely on Austria’s alpine pastures” with ten rules for a safe and enjoyable holiday around cattle.

Why is correct behavior on the mountain pastures so important?


Our alpine pastures and meadows are pure nature, valued holiday destinations and important economic areas in one.


We owe it to our farmers that this is the case!


They care for these beautiful natural landscapes and preserve a centuries-old tradition with the ascent of grazing cattle up the mountain pastures. In order to ensure that Austria’s unique cultural landscape remains freely accessible in the future, we rely on good cooperation on alpine pastures and meadows. We ask you as a visitor to adapt respectfully to this beautiful landscape.

10 Rules for a safe and enjoyable holiday around cattle

  1. Avoid contact with grazing animals. Do not feed the animals and maintain a safe distance at all time!
  2. Try not to be loud. Do not scare cattle!
  3. Mother cows protect their calves. Avoid cows with calves, especially if you have a dog with you!
  4. Always keep dogs under control and on a short leash. If it becomes clear that a cow is going to attack: Let your dog off the lead immediately!
  5. Do not stray from the path!
  6. If cattle block your path give them the widest berth you can!
  7. If a cow approaches you: Stay calm, do not turn your back on the animal and give it a wide berth!
  8. At the first sign of the animals seeming unsettled, remain calm and leave the area quickly!
  9. Respect fences! If there is a gate, please use it and close it afterwards, then cross the meadow swiftly!
  10. Treat the people who work here, the countryside and the animals with respect!
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