Like so many of us, I myself believed that cows produce milk all year round for us humans to drink, I actually thought we were somehow doing the cow a favour by releasing any build-up pressure the cow may have within its milk udders.
FACT – Cows like humans ONLY produce milk while pregnant and lactating. The industry needs to keep their cows forever pregnant and producing milk to stay in the business. On average a cows lifespan is between 20 – 25 years of age. Cows born into factory farms only live to be 4 – 5 years old. I will explain how this works.
For a female cow to reproduce she must be artificially inseminated on what the industry calls a “rape rack”. This is to ensure that the cow will calve and reach milk production quickly.
Imagine being forcibly raped and impregnated just for your milk. Imagine being pregnant only to give birth and have your baby taken away immediately or within hours of being born.
Imagine then having machines latched onto your teats every day, twice a day for up to a year during each pregnancy cycle pumping out milk that was meant for your baby.
The grieving process for a mother cow who has just had her baby stolen from her is a harrowing thing to witness and this happens millions of times a day and needs to stop.
Like humans’ cows are pregnant for 9 months and exhibit the same maternal behaviour as a woman.
Cows are affectionate, emotional and intelligent and one of the most powerful relationships for a cow is that between a cow and her baby calf. Cows are attentive, protective and loving parents.
Never knowing where your babies are. If they are dead or alive.
Never being able to offer your baby the milk that was meant for them. Your rights as the mother are denied and you are just a commodity.
When a mother is separated from her baby she will cry and bellow out for hours even days and many mothers fall into depression. A mother cow will frantically search for her baby and show visible signs of distress.
The baby calf will cry for their mother as they are put in little pens where they can barely move, let alone even turn around. The baby calf is scared, alone and confused and will try to attempt to suckle on anything that resembles her mother's udder but unfortunately for the calf, they will never know what a mothers love remotely feels like.
If the cow gives birth to a female she will remain on the farm to eventually replace her mother. The male calves often being called “unwanted by-product” of the industry are shipped to auction and sold to veal operations.
After the traumatic ordeal once mother and calf are separated. Mum then enters a world of continuous slavery and abuse for her milk and eventually sold off for her meat and skin. I recently found out that the majority of the time cows are still alive and fully conscious during being skinned for their skin to make and produce leather.
At the time of auction, 33% of dairy cows will have developed mastitis (a very painful udder infection). Many cows will also be limping in excruciating pain due to inflammation of the hoof which is caused by the cow having to stand for excessive amounts of time during the day.
Mastitis in a dairy cow
After a lifetime of forcibly being raped, being pregnant, having your baby stolen and being latched onto machines all your life. Your body literally gives in, you can’t stand, you can’t get up, you cannot walk. Now you are known as a “Downer” (That alone is a terrible label for a cow who has only known suffering and slavery) which only means one thing – She’s getting sent to slaughter.
Every time you sit down to dinner you have the opportunity to make a difference, choose to take animals off your plate so you can help protect these wonderful animals and save lives.
If you are interested in learning more about how to become a vegan or you are genuinely curious as to what it means to be vegan and how we can save the animals. Veganism is a lifestyle not a diet.
I have listed some videos that I personally recommend for all to see.
Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead * All Logo's and brands used in this article are the property of the perspective creator/manufacturer.*