Cow Appreciation Day
We often overlook the atrocities humans inflict upon animals like cows. We ought to appreciate cows far more than we do by avoiding animal cruelty altogether and letting them live peacefully.
The atrocities that cows go through
We don’t realize that our increasing demand for dairy and meat leads to more and more cows in the dairy industry. In dairies, cows are tethered by short ropes their entire lives forcing them to sit in their own faeces and urine, they are not given enough exercise. The cows are separated from their calves a few hours after birth. They are injected with hormones and are forced to give milk for human consumption. They are tied, beaten and impregnated year after year. And once the milk output reduces they are sold to the slaughterhouse for their meat. Learn more about the horrors cows face due to dairy.
Sentience of Cows
Cows have a great memory. They can recognise the faces of other cows and humans, years after meeting them. Cows have emotional abilities. They show a wide range of emotions, such as joy, sadness, fear, anger, and anxiety. Cows show changes in their body when they feel different emotions. For instance, the white part of their eyes becomes more visible when they are stressed. Their ears hang loosely when they are relaxed or happy. When cows are separated from their calves, if you observe closely you can see the whites of their eyes.
Human mothers cannot bear to be separated from their children. Similarly, cows express such separation from their calves by crying for days or weeks. Cows that are tortured by humans are seen to avoid those who cause them pain. Cows tend to be drawn to people who are compassionate to them.
Cows also make friends and have complex social dynamics between members of a herd. They can recognize their herd and have close friendships with each other. The herd also chooses a leader cow. The leader is chosen based on how agreeable they are along with good social skills, intelligence, and self-confidence. Selfish and moody cows are usually not chosen to be leaders.
Despite this display of sentience, we don’t consider the pain they go through. Cows are aware and distressed when they see their family or friends being slaughtered, hear them cry in pain, and empathize with them. In a slaughterhouse, cows protest and express pain when they are poked or tortured. They are always aware of when they are being treated cruelly. They can even predict what will happen to them and express grief when their family or friends go missing.
Cows express their will to live, value their lives, and strive to survive.
Appreciating and showing compassion
These instances show that cows are more sentient than we know. They are just like us and deserve all our love and compassion. So, for Cow Appreciation Day this year, let us show cows some real appreciation and care. We can do this by eliminating dairy products from our diet and choosing plant-based dairy instead.