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Jessie the Calf

Hello, my name is Jessie and I'm a baby cow. This is the true story of why I was born...

My mother has to remain pregnant to produce milk and because of that she has a baby every year. This year that baby was me.

I never did meet my Daddy, I only knew my mother for a few brief days and then our bond was forcibly broken by the dairy farmer. As I was being dragged away by my tail I could hear my mother screaming and bleating non-stop. I was held by a rope round my neck and tied to a steel loop against a concrete wall. Although I never saw my Mummy again I can still remember her cries which continued for up to three days and three nights. I never tasted my mother's milk because the dairy farmer stole it all to sell to humans and that is why my Mummy now stands broken hearted, her throat dry and sore, unable to bleat any longer. I was cold, frightened and hungry. Then the farmer came back and untied me and I thought for a moment I may see my Mummy again, but how wrong could I have been? Instead I was taken to an exportation truck and roughly herded in with hundreds of other baby calves. All of us were frightened and crying for our Mummies. The journey began. We were so cramped we could barely move and there was nothing to eat or drink. I thought the journey would go on forever, it lasted for hours and I heard noises I had never heard on the farm. It was so frightening and all the baby calves felt terrorised. Finally we arrived at the port in Dover, hungry, exhausted, terrified, with nobody to help us. The truck was driven onto a ship and another tortuous journey began.

It must have been for many hours but it became so unbearable that I passed out and when I came round we were being driven onto dry land and then onto a farm. We were now in France. Here I was to end my days chained in a veal crate so I couldn't even move my legs and head. I would never see grass, the sun or feel the rain on my back. I was only a baby but for me there was no milk, something I needed and craved. Instead I was fed a weak sugary substitute which kept me anaemic and my flesh pale and soft for the delicacy of veal which human beings eat. This horror lasted for eighteen long weeks until one final day the farmer came and briefly I was free of the crate. But the moment was short-lived and then I was in a room, more horrific than anything I could ever imagine. There were no windows and the friends I had travelled with were there too. The smell of fear and death was everywhere and I can't tell you what happened next...

I now realise that I was not an individual, my life was only ever going to be exploited... all I am is a by-product of the dairy industry.

For more information about the dairy industry see Jessie's Myspace profile:

Love them, don't eat them

In addition to having distinct personalities, cows are generally very intelligent animals who can remember things for a long time. Animal behaviorists have found that cows interact in socially complex ways, developing friendships over time, sometimes holding grudges against cows who treat them badly, forming social hierarchies within their herds, and choosing leaders based upon intelligence. They are emotionally complex as well and even have the capacity to worry about the future.


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