Introduction:I do drink milk and I do eat beef, however I am also aware of the problems in the dairy industry regarding cruelty.
First of all you need to be aware that in order for a cow to produce milk she first has to have a calf.
When calves are born to dairy cattle they are taken away from their mothers often at only a few days of age. They are moved far away so they cannot hear each other bawling.
In the dairy industry the calves are then put into small stalls or calf crates. Their movements are often very limited. The idea is for them to get fat for market. They do not get to run and play with the other calves like the beef calves do (and who are still with their moms too).
Additionally the cows are sometimes confined in a dairy barn for months. They are prevented from eating grass because that changes the taste of their milk. They are finally let out of the barn after several months so their body can recover just long enough for the cycle to continue.
In the case of bob veal the calves are killed at a very young age. Other veal calves might have a month or two to enjoy their life in a boring pen before they are slaughtered.
After calving a few times the cow's milk production goes down. So while she might have many more years of producing milk it does not matter, her life is ended and she is replaced by a younger animal.
Not all countries allow dairy cattle to be injected with hormones, but the USA is one country where this is often done - simply so they can use fewer cows to make more milk. I feel this is cruel because the hormones are not natural and they might be over taxing the cow.
For the record my wife and I live rurally and are familiar with the beef and dairy industries but we do not raise cattle.
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