By Robert Cohen Executive Director Text Only


A November 19, 2001 story in Canada's National Post revealed
that "dumb farm animals" are smarter than they look and that
they actually feel pain.


According to the Post:

"Cows have the ability to reason. Sheep have remarkable
memories. Pigs have sensitive feelings."

Canadian researchers have demonstrated that dairy cows are
more sophisticated than farmers realize.

Even more remarkable is that this story has been re-posted
in the "NEWS" section of one of the largest Internet dairy
websites, Dairy Action.

In other words, farmers no longer have any excuse or
rationale to deny that their pain-inflicting use of brutal
and inhumane farm techniques ultimately end the lives of 27
million feeling, reasoning, sensitive living creatures each
day with sharp knife blades sliced through the flesh and
muscles of these animal's equally sensitive throats.

According to the Post report:

"Sheep, for instance, have remarkable memories, a recent
British study suggests. Pigs have sensitive feelings,
Canadian research shows. They engage in clever, even
deceptive, behaviour -- such as when young bulls feign
disinterest in cows in heat until dominant bulls are out of
sight. And, when over-stressed, they can exhibit disturbing
social behaviour..."

The Canadian animal scientists study farm practices that
milk drinkers and meat eaters would rather not know, such

"The pain felt by 12 million piglets castrated in Canada
each year without painkillers; the trauma and distress
experienced by young heifers thrown into milking parlours a
day after they give birth; the plaintive calls of hungry,
lonely calves in their stalls."

Scientists have analyzed the unusually high-pitched squeals
of young piglets being castrated within two weeks of birth
and conclude that the animals are in enormous pain and
should be given painkillers.

Take a moment to appreciate the source of each food item on
today's Thanksgiving plate.

If you are a canine-eating Korean, did the dog yelp in pain
during death? If you are an ice cream-slurping American, did
the calf cry in fear when she was separated from the cow so
that her mother's milk could then be sold to fatten the
unweaned human?

In the spirit and consciousness of a universal force that
unites all creatures into an eternal oneness and recognizes
greater degrees of similarity between mammalian species than
difference, does it matter who causes pain to another and
who ends up eating who? Is there a cumulative scorecard
tallying the pain and suffering that you individually
inflict upon all others? Do you give thanks to the turkey or
the lamb or the piglet?

Robert Cohen author of:   MILK A-Z
Executive Director (
Dairy Education Board

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