tagged w/ Veal Calves
Cow Proves Animals Love, Think, And Act
April 13, 2012 Megan Cross
A dairy cow made the tough choice to hide one of her calves after giving birth to twins. As her fifth birth, the cow remembered her previous agony and knew that both of her babies would be taken away, unless she tried to save one. The intelligence and care displayed by this mothering cow is both heartbreaking and breathtaking. Read this touching tale, told by a veterinarian, about an amazing display of motherly love that proves animals love and feel. — Global Animal
Photo Credit: APEX
By Holly Cheever, DVM, reprinted from Action for Animals
I would like to tell you a story that is as true as it is heartbreaking. When I first graduated from Cornell’s School of Veterinary Medicine, I went into a busy dairy practice in Cortland County. I became a very popular practitioner due to my gentle handling of the dairy cows. One of my clients called me one day with a puzzling mystery: his Brown Swiss cow, having delivered her fifth calf naturally on pasture the night before, brought the new baby to the barn and was put into the milking line, while her calf was once again removed from her. Her udder, though, was completely empty, and remained so for several days.
As a new mother, she would normally be producing close to one hundred pounds (12.5 gallons) of milk daily; yet, despite the fact that she was glowing with health, her udder remained empty. She went out to pasture every morning after the first milking, returned for milking in the evening, and again was let out to pasture for the night — this was back in the days when cattle were permitted a modicum of pleasure and natural behaviors in their lives — but never was her udder swollen with the large quantities of milk that are the hallmark of a recently-calved cow.
I was called to check this mystery cow two times during the first week after her delivery and could find no solution to this puzzle. Finally, on the eleventh day post calving, the farmer called me with the solution: he had followed the cow out to her pasture after her morning milking, and discovered the cause: she had delivered twins, and in a bovine’s “Sophie’s Choice,” she had brought one to the farmer and kept one hidden in the woods at the edge of her pasture, so that every day and every night, she stayed with her baby — the first she had been able to nurture FINALLY—and her calf nursed her dry with gusto. Though I pleaded for the farmer to keep her and her bull calf together, she lost this baby, too—off to the hell of the veal crate.
Think for a moment of the complex reasoning this mama exhibited: first, she had memory — memory of her four previous losses, in which bringing her new calf to the barn resulted in her never seeing him/her again (heartbreaking for any mammalian mother). Second, she could formulate and then execute a plan: if bringing a calf to the farmer meant that she would inevitably lose him/her, then she would keep her calf hidden, as deer do, by keeping her baby in the woods lying still till she returned. Third — and I do not know what to make of this myself — instead of hiding both, which would have aroused the farmer’s suspicion (pregnant cow leaves the barn in the evening, unpregnant cow comes back the next morning without offspring), she gave him one and kept one herself. I cannot tell you how she knew to do this—it would seem more likely that a desperate mother would hide both.
All I know is this: there is a lot more going on behind those beautiful eyes than we humans have ever given them credit for, and as a mother who was able to nurse all four of my babies and did not have to suffer the agonies of losing my beloved offspring, I feel her pain.
Holly Cheever, DVM
Vice President, New York State Humane Association Member
Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association’s Leadership Council
Cow Proves Animals Love, Think, And Act
April 13, 2012... more
The 5th annual World Go Vegan Week is taking place this year from October 24th through 31st. This week is a celebration of compassion and a time to take action for animals, the environment and everyone's well-being. A plant-based diet not only improves your health, it significantly reduces your carbon footprint and preserves resources for future generations. So please join me in creating a healthy future and go vegan for World Go Vegan Week.
- Emily Deschanel
IDA would like to encourage people to use World Go Vegan Week to educate their community about the vegan lifestyle as a compassionate, sustainable, and healthy way of eating and living. Promoting veganism through outreach events and the media, we know that our annual World Go Vegan Week is helping make the word "vegan" a household word, universally recognized as meaning love and compassion for all living beings.
Take the Vegan Pledge [http://ida.convio.net/site/PageNavigator/Vegan_Pledge] and pledge to go vegan for the week of World Go Vegan Week, October 24 - 31. Join other compassionate and inspired people that are changing their diet, changing their life and changing the world! Then, hold an event to celebrate you commitment to World Go Vegan Week.
Here are some ways you can celebrate World Go Vegan Week:
Be sure to register your event with us so we can send you flyers, posters and other materials to make you event a success. Contact Hope Bohanec: email@example.com (415)448-0058.
* Plan an event or activity to get people interested in veganism, such as a public lecture, cooking demonstration, feed-in with vegan food samples, leafleting, tabling, library exhibit, or street theater performance. If you serve vegan food at your event, you can get refunded for the cost through the VegFund
* Host a vegan potluck dinner or restaurant outing to show your family and friends that they don't have to sacrifice taste to save animals' lives. Sharing delicious vegan food with others is a fun and easy way to make a difference in the lives of animals and the people you care about.
* Ask your local natural foods store to offer vegan samples for the week. Ask your favorite local food store to offer vegan samples or specials for the last week of October. Let them know that we can send information, posters and materials to help them celebrate World Go Vegan Week.
* Ask veg-friendly restaurants to offer discounts or specials on their vegan food. Encourage restaurants to have vegan specials for the week or to offer a discount for bringing in a veg-curious customer.
* Show a powerful, short vegan video at your next potluck or social gathering. Here's one of our favorites: Vegan video by NonViolenceUnited.org.
* Host a vegan pie-baking contest. You can do this in your own home in a public place. Offer prizes like gift certificates to veggie restaurants or IDA T-shirts. Don't you want to be a judge? Yum!
* Host a Vegan Halloween Party. Have a costume party and have prizes for the best animal costume, most compassionate, and the most vegan creative! Have vegan Halloween candy and treats on hand and go trick-or-treating, offering folks at the door vegan candy and brochures.
* Students: join or start a vegan club in your school and plan an event with your friends that will educate people about the benefits of a vegan diet to human health, animals, and the environment. Write a paper on veganism, hand out vegan literature at a college campus or help get vegan meals into your school's cafeteria. Visit Choice to learn how.
* Have a well-known vegan author or athlete come speak in your community. Host an event where a famous vegan offers an inspiring presentation. Have vegan treats for folks to try. IDA can help you contact the person.
* Send a friend or family member who lives far away a gift certificate to a restaurant in their own town. Visit Happy Cow for reviews of vegetarian restaurants around the country.
* Write a letter to the editor about the benefits of a vegan diet or the cruelties of factory farming, or ask your local newspaper to write a story on the subject.
* If you are religious, or participate in spiritual services or gatherings, look for opportunities to incorporate the vegan message into the discussions. If you participate in study groups, suggest discussion fo the vegan message.
* Visit a farmed animal sanctuary and take a friend who still eats meat. There are a number of farmed animal sanctuaries where you can visit rescued cows, pigs, turkeys, chickens, ducks, goats, sheep and rabbits live naturally in peace and harmony without fear of abuse or slaughter. Check out Animal Acres, Animal Place, Farm Sanctuary, Poplar Springs Animal Sanctuary, or IDA's Project Hope.
* Encourage a Compassionate Thanksgiving. Since Thanksgiving is coming up in a few weeks, talk to your community food banks about providing vegan options such as Tofurkys. Consider buying a few Tofurkys, preparing them, and bringing them to your food bank or other similar community dinner. Be sure to check out Gentle Thanksgiving which offers a lot of information and guidance on this special observance.
* Share the ideals of veganism with your community of friends and colleagues by adding this quote to your email signature:"Veganism gives us all the opportunity to say what we 'stand for' iin life -- the ideal of healthy, humane living. Add decades of health to your life, with a clear conscience as a bonus." - Donald Watson
* If you are a part of an animal protection organization, become a presenter of World Go Vegan Week. There are no costs to you for joining us as a co-presenter. All you need is to post the World Go Vegan Week banner on your web site, which links to the World Go Vegan Week web page. Contact Hope Bohanec, for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org or call (415) 448-0058.Celebrate Compassion
The 5th annual World Go Vegan Week is taking place this year... more
Blog by The GirlieGirl Army...
September 4th, 2010
Why Eating Dairy Is Simply Heartless
After watching a buncha kids chow down on cheese slices yesterday in the Park, we thought we’d reiterate a few reasons why feeding our children dairy is just absolutely disgusting - from a place of health, a place of compassion, and a place of basic human decency.
We’d like to acknowledge all the wonderful mothers out there, both human and animal. In particular and as a bit of a contrast, though, we’d like to highlight the plight of mother cows (via the always articulate Mary Max of Kind Green Planet.)
For a seemingly innocent glass of milk, chunk of cheese, container of yogurt, cheap hamburger, and white veal, female cows are forced to be mothers. That is, they are constantly impregnated so they will produce milk. (I bet you thought, like I used to, that they just naturally provide a never-ending supply!)
There are many problems with this, but I’ll mention just a few:
-Why should any female, human or non-human, be forced to be a baby-making machine? This is feminism 101!
-Once the mother cow gives birth, her baby is stolen from her. Could you imagine if this were done to a cat after birthing kittens or a dog after birthing puppies? Mother cows bellow for days looking for their babies.
-To add insult to injury, mother cows are then “hooked up” and milked. It’s cold and painful, not warm and nurturing as it would be if she were able to be with her young.
-Female cows endure this cycle for years until they are finally turned into cheap hamburger.
A few words about the stolen babies:
-Female calves never feel the warmth and love of their mothers as they are kept in a separate area, first raised on formula and then fed some sort of cheap feed until they are “ready” to be added to the baby-making/milk-producing system.
-Male calves are sent to veal farms where they are kept tethered in cramped, filthy, cold crates, and fed an anemic diet. Could you imagine this being done to a kitten or puppy? And all for the sake of “succulent white veal.”
Humans do not need to consume dairy to be healthy.
It actually makes us less healthy because the saturated fat clogs our arteries, and the acidic nature of its protein aggravates osteoporosis. Calcium can be found in many plant foods such as sesame seeds, leafy greens, and fortified juices and cereals. Contrary to popular opinion, protein can be found in all plant foods, but especially in beans, nuts, seeds, tofu, tempeh, and seitan.
Finally, we are the only species that drinks the milk from another species! I think we would find it bizarre if a giraffe drank the milk of a rhinoceros or a zebra drank the milk of a pig. Cows’ milk is meant for baby cows, not us! We have our mothers’ milk for a while and then that should be it. So, if you do consume dairy or eat hamburger or veal, please keep this in mind and perhaps choose to honor mother cows by not eating those things.
Farm Sanctuary recently uncovered the abusive conditions at a dairy farm.
Here is some of that footage. Please watch it - then open your hearts to change.Blog by The GirlieGirl Army...
September 4th, 2010
Why Eating Dairy Is Simply... more
Activists urge halt to veal sales
By Kim Leonard, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Kim Leonard is a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review staff writer
An animal rights group that counts former TV game show host Bob Barker among its members is urging Giant Eagle to stop selling veal in its supermarkets, saying calves raised for the product are mistreated.
Chicago-based Mercy for Animals on Tuesday released a video narrated by Barker that claims to expose conditions at Buckeye Veal farm near Wooster, Ohio. Male calves are chained by their necks inside individual crates just 2 feet wide during their 18-week lives, Matt Rice, a campaign coordinator, said Tuesday in a news conference Downtown.
Atlantic Veal and Lamb of Brooklyn, N.Y., sources meat from the Ohio farm and supplies it to Giant Eagle Inc. under the Plume DeVeau label, the group said.
Giant Eagle said Buckeye Veal has assured the company that it meets industry guidelines and is switching to housing animals in groups without tethering. The O'Hara-based grocer "has no intention of discontinuing the sale of veal products," spokesman Dan Donovan said in a statement, but it's working with veal suppliers to change to group housing.
Buckeye Veal called the video "sensationalized" and said it includes shots from several other unrelated farms. Footage that is from Buckeye shows calves in two facilities that are being converted for groups of animals, the farm said.
Rice said the hidden camera video was shot Aug. 19.
"Because of inadequate animal protection laws at the state level and the fact that no federal laws protect animals during their lives on the farm, cruelty to animals in the dairy and veal industry is commonplace," he said.
Mercy for Animals wants the public to ask Giant Eagle to drop veal products from its meat departments, Rice said. Chip Lines-Burgess, president of the American Veal Association, said such animal activist groups "want to eliminate meat from the American diet and force consumers to a vegetarian diet."
Rice said 90 percent of veal producers still use the crating practice, but Lines-Burgess said 30 percent of veal calves now are raised in group housing, and the association set a goal to switch all farms over to it by 2017.
http://www.ciwf.org.uk/images/2008/v/vealcalfincrate.jpgActivists urge halt to veal sales
By Kim Leonard, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW... more
Costco Responds to Animal Cruelty Charge
The mega-popular chain store pledges humane treatment of veal calves
Updated 8:30 PM PDT, Wed, Sep 1, 2010
Following the release of video purportedly showing animal cruelty at a supplier's farm, Costco Wholesale vowed Wednesday to make sure the calves that produce the veal on its shelves are treated humanely.
``We're very disappointed not only in our vendor but ourselves,'' Jeff Lyons, Costco's senior vice president of fresh foods, said. ``We didn't know this was taking place.''
The video taken by the animal rights group, Mercy For Animals, at Ohio-based Buckeye Veal farm in April showed rows of narrow wooden stalls, each of which housed a calf chained by its neck to a low bar.
The calves were unable to turn around or even lie down comfortably. Some could be seen trying to pull free. Several were covered in feces.
Mercy for Animals' Nathan Runkle said today, ``Costco has, literally, taken a step forward on this important issue.''
``However, consumers should know that crate-free doesn't mean cruelty-free,'' he added. ``Ditching veal is the most compassionate choice shoppers can make to prevent animal abuse.''
Lyons said Costco has ordered its supplier -- Atlantic Veal and Lamb Inc. -- to trace all the veal that became part of Costco's inventory.
``(Atlantic Veal is) right now on notice to provide the lot identification so that we can identify the farms that have the proper handling
procedures,'' Lyons said.
``We will then audit those farms and make sure that is a true statement, and once that's done, we will continue to do business with them. But if they cannot provide that information, then we will delete the program.
``We're going by the obligations that we've made, the commitments we've made to that vendor, and we're doing our research.''
Gaylord Barkman of Buckeye Veal, said on Tuesday that the company has been in the process of switching from individual stalls to group housing, where the calves can roam and interact with other calves.
Buckeye Veal has 480 calves in individual shelves, 850 in group housing and 150 that will be moved to group housing in four weeks.
When asked whether Costco would accept calves from Buckeye Veal's group housing facility, Lyons said, ``If that manufacturer is doing something that we don't agree with but is acceptable by the Veal Association and the American Veterinary Association, that's not our business -- that's their business.
``If they were doing something illegal, that'd be different. But if everything is approved by other entities, then they can do whatever they like. We're not going to participate in that.''
First Published: Sep 1, 2010 8:21 PM PDTCostco Responds to Animal Cruelty Charge
The mega-popular chain store pledges... more
Author of The New Good Life, Diet For A New America, and many other bestsellers
Posted: July 13, 2010 08:00 AM
The Brutality of Factory Farms: An Inside Look (VIDEO):
This past week, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill that will essentially prohibit, starting in 2015, any egg from being sold in the state that comes from caged hens. This bill became law 20 months after a majority of California voters approved Proposition 2, making it clear that concern for the living conditions of livestock is no longer the province of animal rights activists alone.
Recognizing how widespread concern about the humane treatment of farm animals has become, the California Milk Advisory Board has recently ramped up its 10-year "Happy Cow" advertising campaign with a new series of ads proclaiming that "Great milk comes from Happy Cows. Happy Cows come from California." These ads are now being shown across the nation.
Unfortunately, there are a few problems with the ads. For one, they weren't filmed in California at all. They were filmed in Auckland, New Zealand.
And that's just the tip of the iceberg.
Current Milk Board ads claim that 99 percent of the state's dairy farms are family owned. But in order to arrive at this figure, they count as "dairy farms" rural households with one or two cows. Meanwhile, there are corporate-owned dairies in the San Joaquin Valley which have 15,000 or 20,000 cows. It is these far larger enterprises that produce the vast majority of California's milk.
My concern, let me emphasize, is not with small-scale family farms. I have no problem with the many hard-working families who treat their cows well, take care of the land and try to bring a healthy product to market. My problem is with the much larger agribusiness enterprises, the factory farms to whom the animals in their care are nothing but sources of revenue.
Thanks to the practices they employ, the amount of milk produced yearly by the average California cow is nearly 3,000 pounds more than the national average. This increased production may seem like a good thing, but it is achieved at great cost to the animals. The cows are routinely confined in extremely unnatural conditions, injected with hormones, fed antibiotics, and in general treated with all the compassion of four legged milk pumps. Roughly one third of California's cows suffer from painful udder infections, and more than half suffer from other infections and illnesses.
Although genetically engineered bovine growth hormone is banned in many countries including Canada, Australia, New Zealand and much of the European Union, it is widely used in California's largest dairy operations to increase milk production. Unfortunately, it also increases udder infections and lameness in the cows, markedly raises the amount of pus found in milk, and may increase the risk of cancer in consumers.
The natural lifespan of a dairy cow is about 25 years, but one-fourth of California's dairy cows are slaughtered each year (typically at four or five years old), because they've become crippled from painful foot infections or calcium depletion, or simply because they can no longer produce the unnaturally high amounts of milk required of them.
The Milk Board ads present the California dairy industry as a bucolic enterprise that operates in lush, grassy pastures. Some of the ads employ the slogan "So much grass, so little time." But California's dairy industry is concentrated in the dry and barren Central Valley. Here, the cows are typically kept in overcrowded, dirt feedlots. Some never see a blade of grass in their entire lives.
The ads show calves in meadows talking happily to their mothers. But the calves born to California dairy cows typically spend only 24 hours with their mothers, and some do not even get that much. Here is a video that reveals what actually happens to the calves:
Author of The New Good Life, Diet For A New America, and many other... more
The Beings We Eat
Worldwide, more than 80 billion land animals, of many kinds, are raised and killed each year as food for one particular group called Homo sapiens. Similar numbers of animals are taken from the water, so humans eat around 160 billion animals each year. In comparison, just about 100 billion humans have walked this planet in our known history.
We present these facts not to make ourselves or our readers feel overwhelmed. No one wants to feel bad. We can, however, feel responsible. Think of it as the power to change things, beginning today. Because we can, by becoming vegan.
Here is an overview of the realities of animal farming. Goats, sheep, and other animals not covered here are also respected by vegan values. These beings are just a few of the many conscious beings humans have dominated and now use daily. This domination and use is not inevitable, so you need not accept the objection that vegans are idealists and the world won’t go vegan overnight. The world of one person changes with each individual who does opt out of animal use, and that’s just what a movement means.
The Chickens and the Eggs
Of the 80 billion land animals killed each year, well over half are chickens. In the United States, nine billion out of the ten billion land animals killed each year are chickens raised for their flesh, their ability to reproduce, and their eggs.
The chickens bred and confined to lay eggs are commonly referred to as battery hens. Most are kept in small, wire cages; a small number are kept in crowded sheds, and a tiny fraction of the overall number have some access to the outdoors. Nearly all of them have much of their beaks seared off (to prevent pecking), and are quickly exhausted from the egg-laying, and at that point slaughtered for their flesh. Osteoporosis and frequent bone breaks are the norm for their bodies, purpose-bred to lay egg after egg.
Male chicks are not wanted in this business. They may be suffocated or ground alive to be used as fertilizer or feed. Egg production is a deadly business for birds.
Some feminists -- including Priscilla Feral, Lee Hall, and Richard Twine -- have pointed out the commodification of the female reproductive system in the egg industry, as well as in the dairy industry, is, and should be treated as, an issue of exploitation every bit as oppressive as the production of flesh.
The idea behind eggs marketed as “cage-free” is to switch from keeping hens in a wire cage to keeping them in a shed or on the stacked floors (known as tiers) more common in Europe. Then the customer feels that the conditions were improved. Some proprietors keep birds in both sheds and cages to take advantage of both markets.
The conditions found in cage-free operations are virtually identical to the conditions endured by chickens raised for their flesh. These “broiler” chickens spend their days in one big cage, often with many thousands of other birds, the air heavy with dust and ammonia from their waste.
So “cage-free” is no bargain for the chickens, and removing these purpose-bred animals from cages can actually increase bone breaks, stress, and competition for food. Friends of Animals president Priscilla Feral visited a company considered a pioneer in this market, and asked the tour facilitator to please pick up some of the dead birds whose bodies the crowded birds had to walk around and over, and the facilitator did so, without any sign of surprise at the dead birds. Priscilla noted that these birds too had much of their beaks taken off. The males were mostly missing. Priscilla remembers this as an appalling scene. “And they all get slaughtered at the end.”
“We have no need for eggs,” continues Priscilla. “So the vegan thing to do is to advocate peaceful and respectful alternatives. I urge everyone who is thinking about vegan living to learn how to cook and bake wonderful foods, including egg-free desserts, from Dining With Friends: The Art of North American Vegan Cuisine.”
The Beings We Eat
Worldwide, more than 80 billion land animals, of... more