Run, Yvonne, run

The fugitive, eluding and frustrating the forces of order, has survived for months in the wild, and is acquiring more fans every day. Hooray for Yvonne the cow!

It's got all the attributes of a Hollywood blockbuster: a fugitive on the run, a media storm, police in hot pursuit with orders to shoot on sight, activists and religious leaders protesting their support for the target - even songs of support of Yvonne.

But Yvonne is the Austrian cow that has been on the run in the Bavarian woods since May, when she escaped from the farm where she was being fattened up for slaughter. The wily runaway has become a local celebrity of sorts in the German village of Zangberg, which itself now is attracting attention from the world's media. Police have been unable to contain Yvonne and she has taken to grazing only at night.

Sadly, officials in the Bavarian district of Mühldorf, in southern Germany, now say they believe she is a danger to the public - after she jumped in front of a stunned police patrol - and so can now be shot. On Monday, hunters got within 20 metres but amazingly could not hit her with tranquilliser guns. Yvonne lived to graze another day.

Now fans, animal-rights groups and a Hindu priest are calling for her life to be spared. A German tabloid, Bild, has even offered €10,000 (Dh53,000) for her safe capture. Considering the publicity she has brought her village, and the increase in farm holidays this saga may generate, surely officials could pardon Yvonne and provide a happy ending.

One question remains: Who will play Yvonne in the film adaptation?

Published: August 25, 2011 04:00 AM

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