Happy Cows Don't Watch TV

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Happy Cows Don't Watch TV

By Stephanie Feldstein on Animals.Change.org
March 2010

"Humanity" is not giving animals material things that appeal to humans. It's showing compassion, empathy and respect for the needs of the species. I'd be willing to bet that the cows would trade their gadgets any day for the chance to visit a real field.

A farmer in Russia has installed LED televisions in his barn to broadcast pictures of the beautiful green Swiss Alps to his cows. He hopes watching the lush fields will make the cows more "happy and productive."

It's bad enough that agribusiness feeds us "happy cow" commercials, but expecting television to make a cow happier is a mockery of their suffering. Technology isn't the key to improving farm animals' quality of life.

If this farmer wants happy and productive cows, he should try removing their chains and letting them out of that dark barn.

The article (with photos) says that the farmer is testing his theory with two groups of cows: "one is watching TV, another is deprived of this humanity." The article also notes that people doubt any of the farm workers could afford electronics like this. But that misses the point. These animals aren't being treated better than the farm workers; they could care less about nice TVs. Pretty pictures don't mean anything to them, and if they did, it would only serve to torture them with what they can't have.

"Humanity" is not giving animals material things that appeal to humans. It's showing compassion, empathy and respect for the needs of the species. I'd be willing to bet that the cows would trade their gadgets any day for the chance to visit a real field.