Two mums in NZ proved recently just how far they were willing to go to protect their babies, pushing and even biting a man that threatened them. Oh, did I mention that these mums were cows?? Find out more...
To summarise: a farmer tried to separate calves from their mums ... but the mums fought back to protect their babies! It's a good thing those cows didn't know "MOO Thai"!! Man, I love puns.
Like most mums, cows form very strong bonds with their young. One study suggested that this bond is formed within 5 minutes of giving birth! After birth the mum licks her calf all over, in a process that helps her learn the sight and smell of her baby. If they are separated, the mum will bellow frantically, and the calves appear frightened and confused.
Unfortunately, the separation of mum and baby happens on dairy farms all the time. See what happens right here in Australia for yourself. WARNING: this isn't easy to watch.
A TV show in England recently caused an uproar by showing the horrible truth, too - right during prime-time.
WARNING: this clip is really sad too :(
In Australia every year, over 700,000 bobby calves are killed as "waste products" of the dairy industry. Some are shot, but the majority are taken from their mothers and put onto trucks with other calves, bound for the slaughterhouse. There they will be killed ... after being alive for less than a week. That's the secret the dairy industry would rather you didn't know.
If you want to take action for bobby calves and their grieving mums - it's easy. You can simply ditch dairy.Delicious alternatives are in supermarkets and delis everywhere - milks, chocolates, yoghurts and icecreams. Have fun exploring and finding your fave!
p.s. my pick for best non-dairy ice-cream: Coco Luscious. Prove me wrong by telling me your pick below!
Herbie the bull is living what I would say is my dream life. He gets to run around outside on the grass all day ... and play with a ball. If you thought dogs were the only animals that loved playing with toys, then check out the love affair Herbie is having with his new ball!
Just like cats and dogs, cows have their own individual personalities. Rosamund Young (author of The Secret Lives of Cows), points out that cows "can be highly intelligent, moderately so, or slow to understand; friendly, considerate, aggressive, docile, inventive, dull, proud, or shy." They form friendships with other cows, and mother cows form strong bonds with their calves.
You may be wondering, "Where do the calves go? Do they get a ball like Herbie?" As much as that would make my day, the reality couldn't be any more different. After separation, the mother and the calf will cry out for each other for days but their chances of a reunion are next to none. Most calves will be killed as a "waste-product" of the dairy industry at just 5 days old. This includes all male calves because they can't produce milk, and any young females not needed to restock the herd of milking cows. Every year in Australia, 700,000 calves are killed like this as part of the system that puts milk and cheese on supermarket shelves.
Not a "feel-good" kinda story is it? The good news for you and for cows though, is that there are alternatives to dairy available in supermarkets and delis across Australia. So Good ice-cream, Tofutti Cuties, oat milk, and Notzarella cheese are all items you can sub into the fridge to replace dairy products. And those are just my faves. Not only do they taste good, they also help save cows and their calves from suffering. That's win-win for everyone!
When it comes to milk, are you Team Oat or Team Soy (or even Team Rice)? And what about desserts - So Good or Tofutti? Tell all in the comments below!
You know the dairy industry is on the defensive when they stop trying to sing the praises of their product and just scrape the bottom of the barrel for reasons not to drink dairy-free milk (like soy, oat or almond milk).
Check out this ad from the American dairy industry -- it's pretty funny in its desperation to sell milk.
Did you know that June 1st is 'World Milk Day'? Or, as I think it should be called, WMD? I think this acronym is more than suitable because milk is a Weapon of Mass Destruction -- for cows, calves and the environment.
On WMD, let's remember the 1 million bobby calves who were taken from their grieving Mums, only to be slaughtered as 'waste products' of the dairy industry -- so that the milk nature intended for them could be fed to humans...
On WMD, let's spare a thought for the struggling Murray Darling Basin. It takes 200 litres of water to get one glass of milk. Not only is this the driest inhabited continent in the world -- our river systems are at record lows. But I'm taking shorter showers while the dairy industry is draining our waterways!
On WMD, let's think about how we can change things for the better. What better day than World Milk Day to mark the day you ditch dairy?
P.S. Did I mention, "Milk is for babies"? Check out our new WMD-inspired banner! Show you care by slapping it on your Myspace, or uploading it to Facebook :)
Click here to download the banner, or copy and paste this code to your Myspace:
<a href="http://www.unleashed.org.au?tr=1026"><img border="0" src="http://www.unleashed.org.au/images/banners/280_dairy.gif" alt="Milk is for babies! unleashed.org.au" title="Milk is for babies unleashed.org.au" height="250" width="280" /></a>
This week the 7:30 Reportran a story on the dangers of milk. According to the program, regular milk may be linked to a long list of diseases including: heart disease, diabetes, autism and even schizophrenia!
Should we really be surprised that a drink intended for baby calves isn't ideal for adult humans? As Dr. Michael Klapper said: "The human body has no more need for cows' milk than it does for dogs' milk, horses' milk or giraffes' milk."
So milk might make you sick. But what the report didn't mention is that it's also making the environment sick. It takes about 200 litres of water to produce just one glass of milk. That's almost as much water as many people use for all their household activities in a day!
But perhaps the darkest side of the dairy industry is what happens to the animals. Cows do not automatically produce milk – just like humans, first they need to have a baby. So what happens to the calf? Every year in Australia, 1 million baby calves are slaughtered as 'waste-products' of the dairy industry. Their flesh may be sold as pink veal, their bones may be crushed-up and made into designer dog biscuits, and the lining of their stomachs may be used in the process of making cheese.
Now that's enough to make anybody sick!
Fortunately, enjoying milk without such sickening side effects is a breeze! Next time you're at the shops, why not try one of these fantastic cruelty free milks?
Soy milk – My personal favourite. It's high in protein and fibre. My recommendation? Try out Sanitarium's So Good Lite if you like that milky taste. But then if you asked Karen, she'd tell you that Vitasoy's Soy Milky Lite is the way to go.
Rice milk – A favourite for some in cooking. If you've got a sweet tooth, this may be the option for you as it's known for its sweeter taste compared to other milks. Vic Unleashed Street Team Co-ordinator Rochelle's recommendation: go get yourself a carton of Vitasoy.
Almond milk, Oat milk, and the list goes on... If you're feeling really adventurous you can even make your own, for example this recipe for cashew milk.
The neat thing with all of these is that not all soy/rice/almond/oat milks taste alike. So there's one to suit everyone's taste. On the flip side, it might take you a little exploring to find the one that suits you. So if at first you don't succed, try another brand ;)
And don't forget to comment below and share which one's your fave?
If you're as obsessive about a mug of scalding hot liquid as I am, you'll understand why I'm giddy with delight at discovering Di Bella's coffee today...
I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with coffee shops... only because you still occasionally find one that's stuck in the dark ages and hasn't heard of soy milk—so I was reminded this morning (thanks a bunch, Brewbakers). Fair to say, these places tend to lose a lot of customers (like me). But when you need a coffee, you need a coffee. Right?
Seriously, we live in a topsy-turvy world where most cafes try to squeeze an extra 50 cents out of you for a dash of soy milk, when it's no secret that the dairy industry is a vastly inefficient machine, squandering precious resources, damaging the environment—and not to mention—causing immense pain, suffering and death to countless innocent cows. In the end you can't really put a dollar figure on the damage (or absurdity) caused by people drinking milk meant for baby cows.
But Di Bella's didn't stop there. Their brews are all fair-trade, AND they also give out free vegan Belgian spice biscuits with their coffees! What more could a coffee lover hope for??
What's your favourite cup? Or, what's the lamest coffee shop experience you've had? Share your comments below!
We’re supposed to let you know that the ideas expressed here are the views of the individual authors, and may not necessarily reflect the views of Animals Australia or Animals Australia Unleashed. So now you know.