Dog Blog

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I'm still stunned about the terrible event that occurred yesterday at the California State Fair, where the fair police shot a pregnant cow that went on a "rampage." In all my years of attending the fair, I've never seen anything like this happen, and I hope I never do again.  In the video of the incident, I think you'll agree it looked more like the cow was being chased by the police cars.  No wonder she was agitated.  Who wouldn't be?  It hardly looked like a rampage to me.  She was sauntering in the video, until the car threatened to run her down, then she sped up, but how fast can a pregnant cow run?  She may have been a big animal, but this wasn't exactly like the running of the bulls in Spain.  It was just one cow.  She had no horns. No one at the fair knows how to lasso a cow?  Don't they have a rodeo there?  That's another hunk of cud to chew on regarding animal abuse.
I'm glad that people who care about animal cruelty are up in arms over the incident, as am I, mainly because the vet made no real attempt to sedate her but just let the fair rent-a-cops, who I doubt were trained to deal with an animal emergency like this, open fire on her, killing her and her unborn calf.  The vet wouldn't approve her to be darted because of danger to the calf, but he lets them shoot the animal repeatedly in the abdomen? Her calf never had a chance. The Fair fuzz were probably thinking, "Whoopee, target practice!" This animal wasn't euthanized, as the vet claimed. In Greek, euthanasia means "good death."  This was hardly that. Very cruel.  

This was one of the animals UC Davis puts on display yearly in the birthing areas, where fairgoers gawk and taunt them while they're giving birth.  Imagine transporting a cow already in labor and taking her to a strange, noisy place to give birth.  No wonder the poor thing bolted!  When an animal goes into labor, it seeks quiet and solitude.  I've watched this go on year after year, and it always upsets me to see such callous treatment of animals. I wish I had spoken up about it much sooner and more people had protested it years ago. Imagine the stress these animals are under, being in labor and being put on public display at the same time.  I've always thought this practice to be extremely cruel to the animals and not a very good lesson in humane treatment of animals for the many children who attend the fair, and that includes the 4-H. Shooting the cow sure wasn't a kindness to animals example, either.  

I'm glad that the Sacramento SPCA staged a protest there today.  I wanted to be there, too, but couldn't go. I think humane officers from the organization should have been present long before now overseeing how these animals are treated at the fair.  I've seen some sad sights throughout the fairgrounds, from the sick, stressed birds at the Fur and Feathers exhibition to the animal barns, petting zoo, rodeo, elephant rides, and the live goldfish still being given away as prizes on the midway.  I thought this kind of animal cruelty had ended years ago.  I still remember the ducklings and chameleons from many years past, which probably all died soon after they were won at the fair.  What about the five-legged calf at the carnival, obviously surgically altered into a mutation. Then there was the year fairgoers were treated to seeing the insides of a live cow through a clear plastic plate surgically inserted in the animal's abdomen by UCD vets who mutilated this unfortunate animal for our viewing pleasure. I know the fair is supposed to be an agricultural event, but the quality of animal treatment there needs to be thoroughly examined and much better addressed than it has been until now.  I hear the HSUS is getting involved, so perhaps there will be some changes at next year's fair, assuming we still have one by then.  

From the callous responses I have read from some on various lists, too many people still think of farm animals as dumb, unfeeling creatures intended solely for our use and abuse. When you consider that humans do have canine teeth, perhaps we were meant to eat meat sparingly, only when we could catch it and kill it ourselves, as opposed to pounds and pounds of it delivered to supermarkets for mass consumption, to the detriment of our well being and that of all the animals tortured and butchered to feed us and fatten us, like we fatten them for the kill.  I believe we should treat our food far more humanely than we do, including the ill-fated animals at the California State Fair.  If they are destined for slaughter (which I hate the thought of), we can at least make their time up until then more pleasant and dispatch them humanely.  

I hope that this incident and the uproar over it will make the officials involved improve animal treatment at future fairs.  There should be no more live animal births at the fair.  Period.  I'm sure that Bossy would have agreed.  Do we really need to see animals giving birth at an entertainment venue?  This could be presented on a video and spare the animal undue stress.  Most of us already know where our steaks and chops come from, anyway.  I know because I see the feces-streaked cattle trucks roaring down the freeway headed for the slaughterhouse, with the animals crowded inside like the people on the cattle cars headed for German death camps.  I look into the terrified brown eyes peering out at me as we drive by.  Each time I see this, I weep and swear I'll never eat another bite of beef.  I go Cold Cow for a while, but I'm ashamed to say I eventually end up eating meat again. I was brought up a carnivore, and it's hard to give it up after a lifetime, but I know it's not healthy to eat as much meat as most Americans do, and I don't eat much of it any more. This may be the final shot in the butt I needed to go all veggie all the time. So, maybe there was an unintended lesson taught by the Gunfight at Expo Corral.  



  • At 10:51 AM, Blogger Tanya Kristine said…

    actaully, i was a vegetarian for 3 years. Now i buy veggie food for home and everyoe once in a while, say on a pool day, we go to corti brothers and buy humanely raised & slaughtered (HATE that word) beef. i feel better doing that.

    i can't even think about that cow at the fair...


Post a Comment

<< Home