America's Dairyland license plate "COWS" (copy)

Cattle have the right of way when being driven on or along roads in Wisconsin.


Cows occasionally wander onto roads in Dodge County, but an entire herd will take to the streets this weekend in a way that probably hasn’t been witnessed locally in most people’s lifetimes.

Drivers are being warned to be careful in southeast Dodge County Sunday morning when a cattle drive over town and county roads is expected to last 4-5 hours, according to a press release from the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office.

The owner of the cattle has hired 15 cattlemen, who will be on horseback as they drive 50 head of cattle. They also will handle traffic control in the area with other staff. The sheriff’s office did not provide the name of the cattle owner.

The drive will start on Thrush Road in the town of Lebanon. The route includes Bluebird Road to County R, north through the village of Hustisford, then north on County E to County S. The cattle drive will travel east on County S about a half-mile to a farm.

This cattle drive is being done against the advice of the sheriff’s office due to the distance involved and warnings have been given to the owner of the cattle regarding potential damage and traffic issues surrounding the drive.

It is important that the motoring public understand that there is a responsibility to yield right of way to livestock being driven on or over a highway. Wisconsin statute 346.21, “Right-of-way of livestock,” states: “The operator of a motor vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to livestock being driven over or along any highway, but any person in charge of such livestock shall use reasonable care and diligence to open the roadway for vehicular traffic.”

If issues arise from this cattle drive that require law enforcement attention, contact the sheriff’s office at 920-386-3726 and a deputy will respond accordingly.