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12 February 2017 - Thank You!

You may recall a couple of weeks ago, I asked for your help in responding to a letter from a concerned Grandmother who had taken her grandchildren to a dairy farm that explains how animals are cared for and milk is produced. She came away from that visit with some questions that she wanted me to explain and provide her with answers.

Why is artificial insemination used so much by dairy farmers, why can’t cows be outdoors to enjoy green grass and sunshine, why is milking cows three times a day instead of two times a day better for the cow, why is the calf separated from its mother a day after being born, allowing no time for bonding, and several other questions that created concerns for her on animal care. They were honest questions from a lady now four generations removed from the farm. I want to thank you all for finding the time to respond. Let ne share some of your answers.

“The cows are milked three times a day in order for them to be on a regular routine which allows their bodies to adjust to a dependable schedule.”

“Advanced machinery, pesticides, herbicides and GMO’s make it possible to feed you and your family. . . and people all over the world, because of this advanced technology. Would you like it if you would not be able to use your modern kitchen appliances, your computer, your automobile, your cell phone, etc.? It would be like turning back the calendar 100 years.”

“I believe when caring for animals, one should not go against nature. It’s not in an animal’s nature to be locked away. Animals need good food and medical care. They need room to grow, play and socialize. If pregnant, cows need exercise.”

“Safety is an issue when it comes to the use of artificial insemination. Many farmers do not want a bull on the farm because they are temperamental and dangerous. Too many farmers have been injured or killed by bulls on the farm.”

“When it comes to calves being taken away from their mother and not being allowed to nurse, how is that different from human births? I have four children and all of them were allowed to be held by their mother for just a moment before being whisked away to the nursery.”

I am going to bundle all your e-mails and send them to the lady. It will be a big package that will offer her many different answers to her questions. And I suggest you use some of the arguments you put forth to me the next time you are in a conversation trying to help people understand the busy world of agriculture in your community. Thanks again for your help.

My thoughts on Samuelson Sez.