A 12-year-old raising his first calf is learning how hard the cattle industry can be after finding his livestock had been shot and killed. The calf is one of at least seven cows nonsensically shot in the past two months.

Northeast Oklahoma ranchers looking to rebuild herds as drought conditions ease are facing an unanticipated loss with at least seven cows, in addition to other livestock, shot and killed. The losses total tens of thousands of dollars.

All of the cases occurred within a 15-mile radius of each other in Nowata County over the last two months.

Eric Epperson’s son lost his first calf, giving the father a tough life lesson to teach his kid.

“We try to teach him responsibility, just like it has been all through the generations. Had him go out and borrow his own money, purchase his own cattle and make that payment back,” Epperson said.