Consider the billions of chickens inside America’s farms. Most are in sheds that contain tens of thousands of birds. No farmer can check each and every bird daily, and it is not economically viable to call a vet to those who are ill. So countless animals live and die inside the sheds, having suffered unknown pains with no treatment or pain alleviation.
And what about pigs in crates so small they cannot turn around? They may suffer pressure sores from lying on the hard ground and the emotional and psychological toll that such an existence has on these smart and sensitive animals can only be imagined.
Dairy cows are kept confined and repeatedly impregnated just so we can have their milk. They should be roaming with their herd and grazing but instead they may suffer lameness and mastitis – a painful infection of their udders. There are countless reports of cows bellowing in grief as their young are taken from them.
And then there is the branding, ear tagging, declawing, tooth-clipping, tail-docking, castration, and all the other painful but routine events that happen on farms. And even the very kindest and best farmers send their animals to slaughter where their throats are cut or they are gassed to death.
Would we treat a person we cared for or loved in the same way?
The suffering of animals is at the very heart of animal agriculture, and those who truly love animals do not harm them.
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