Thursday, January 29, 2009

Cows with names live happier lives

[Image from]

Yup. If you give a cow a name she will live a happier life and produce more milk.

That's what research scientists at Newcastle University (UK) claim they discovered in a recent study: "...naming cows encourages farmers to treat them as individuals, cutting stress levels and boosting milk yields."

In fact, milk yields can increase by as much as a pint and a half a day, which "equates to an extra 6,800 gallons a year at an average-sized dairy farm."

According to Dr. Catherine Douglas, "Just as people respond better to the personal touch, cows also feel happier and more relaxed if they are given a bit more one-to-one attention."

Most of us who have pets would not find these findings all that surprising, as we have learned kindness and love is reciprocated many times over by our little furry creatures.

Cows, however, are a different story. Talk about dumb animals! They don't know enough to come in out of the rain! That's the accepted wisdom of many people.

Not so. Call her Daisy, Buttercup or Mama's Baby, and treat her with affection, your cow will love you for it and respond by doing what she does best - give milk and more of it.

Once again, we relearn the lesson that when it comes to basic needs, there isn't that much difference between the human animal and all the other animals.

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