Home » Features » How Dairy Cows & Veal Calves Suffer


— 释迦牟尼佛

If all Bhikṣus, do not wear eastern silk clothings and waddings, and this land’s [leather] boots and shoes, fur and down [garments, or consume animal] milk, cheese, [curd], cream, [butter], ghee [and other such products], such Bhikṣus, of this world will truly be liberated. Having repaid past [karmic] debts, they will not wander through the three realms. Why is this so? Wearing their body parts, they are all by those conditions [bound, just] as humans who eat this ground’s hundred grains, [vegetables and fruits] within, whose feet do not leave the ground.

— Śākyamuni Buddha
(Śūraṅgama Sūtra)

As summarised from PETA’s site below:

12 Ways Dairy Cows Suffer

[1] Mother cows produce milk for the same reason as humans – only to feed their young; not humans.
[2] To force cows to keep producing milk, farms impregnate them with painful artificial insemination (using rape racks).
[3] Calves are ripped away from their mothers quickly, causing both great distress, as they call for each other for days.
[4] Male calves end up in cramped crates to be fattened for veal.
[5] Female calves later suffer the same fate as their mothers.
[6] After their calves are stolen, mother cows are hooked up, two or more times daily to milking machines.

[7] Their reproductive systems are exploited through genetic selection, despite negative effects on their health.  
[8] With drugs forcing more production, the average cow today in 2019 produces more than four times than cows in 1950.
[9] Cows may be dosed with recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH), which creates mastitis, painful inflammation of the udder. In America, 16.5% of dairy cows suffer and die of it.
[10] Cows’ natural lifespan is about 20 years, but dairy cows are killed after about five years as their bodies wear out from constant forced pregnancy and lactation.
[11] By the time they are killed, about half are lame due to standing on concrete flooring and filth in intensive confinement.
[12] Cows’ bodies are turned into soup, food for dogs and cats, or ground beef because they are too ‘spent’.

7 Ways Veal Calves Suffer

[1] Male calves are seen as ‘by-products’ of the dairy industry, robbed from their mothers when less than a day old.
[2] Many are shipped off to barren, filthy feedlots to await slaughter.
[3] Others are kept in tight prisons, to prevent moving much, so that their flesh will stay tender.
[4] To make their flesh white, calves are fed low iron with little nutrition, making them suffer from anemia, diarrhea, and pneumonia.
[5] Frightened, sick, and alone, they are killed after only a few months to be sold as veal.
[6] All adult and baby cows, raised for their flesh or milk, are eventually slaughtered, to be beef, leather, gelatine and such.
[7] Animal rennet is derived from the stomach of calves, lambs or goats for making cheese. Thus, most cheese is not even vegetarian, much less vegan.

Kinder Alternatives

Removing dairy products (cow-based milk, cheese, yogurt, ice-cream, butter, cream, ghee…) from your diet is easier than ever today. There are many vegan equivalent products, made of healthier and more eco-friendly ingredients such as soy, rice, oat, almond, quinoa, coconut and more.  


— 释迦牟尼佛

Those who resolutely cause their bodies and minds, of all sentient beings, bodies [as meat], or [of their] body parts [as products, if with] both paths of body [in deed] and mind [in thought], not wearing and not eating them, I say these persons, will truly be liberated ones.

— Śākyamuni Buddha
(Śūraṅgama Sūtra)

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