Herding Tacocats: The True Story
Here’s an old picture my grandma sent me that just arrived today. She said that’s my great grandfather on the horse, bringing in a small herd of Tacocats.
She told me that large herds of Tacocats once roamed the Southwest until barbed-wire was invented and the Plains were divided and fenced off. She said that even today, wild Tacocats graze on government lands and that some of the old-timers know where they can be found, but aren’t talking.
Grandma said that the phrase la cría de Gatos de Tacos or herding Tacocats was commonly used until 1848, after the end of the Mexican-American War, when herding cats was preferred due to an emerging sense of nationalism.
She said these animals were extremely difficult to herd, hence the common expression still used today. One should note the organized nature of this grouping in the photo — the legend is that my great grandpa was one of the best and most disciplined Tacocat wranglers in the Southwest.
She said most of the animals in the photo were used as working Tacocats and breeding stock at various ranches in Texas and New Mexico, but some were eaten during times of extreme hardship.