The True Story of One Animal Born Into The Meat Industry

Article from Peta’s Animal Times Issue 3, 2015

Introduction by Jean Furs.

When I first read this article my eyes began to well up with tears for this poor animal I had never met.  The thought of this animals spirit being treated so inhumanely was beyond reason. Stupidity of Humans was a good answer to why this would happen to an innocent animal.

Most of us have eaten meat during our lives, including myself and most of us have never been told how that meat finds its way to our dining tables.  Its not a pleasant thought or a thanksgiving to know that an animal not only had to sacrifice its life for us, but in the way it had to sacrifice its life for us, this is the horrific injustice.  Can mankind be anymore cruel than it already is; let me count the ways? Somehow us humans seem to re-invent new ways all the time of being cruel to helpless animals whom we label as property or food.  Sometimes I step back after reading the news and publications that arrive in the mail on animal abuse, neglect, and torture, and I think to myself, wow how horribly confused and sick this world really is!

Then I read something like this story below, and it brings me to a point of no return for the human beings involved that earn their livelihood in such a manner. Those who cannot even be kind to kill an animal to end its pain and misery. If an animal must be killed to serve the millions of people on earth a meal, than as an act of kindness that animal should not suffer for the sake of the miserable humans involved. I’m embarrassed to be a part of the human race and I’m no where close to being this unkind and never could be. I consider myself one of the good humans but I’m still embarrassed to be a human.

Now the question is “How do we stop this type of behavior from happening?” Is it education or is it policing?

The Story Begins

The truck carrying this cow was unloaded at Walton Stockyards in Kentucky one September morning. After the other animals were removed from the truck, she was left behind, unable to move. The stockyard workers used the customary electric prods in her ear to try to get her out of the truck, then beat and kicked her, but she still didn’t move.  They tied a rope around her neck, tied the other end to a post in the ground and drove the truck away. The cow fell to the ground, landing with both hind legs and her pelvis broken.

For the first three hours, she lay in the hot sun crying out in pain.  Periodically, when she urinated or defecated, she used her front legs to drag herself to a clean spot.  She also tried to crawl to a shaded area but couldn’t.  Altogether, she managed to crawl a painful 13 to 14 yards.  The stockyard employees wouldn’t give her water-the only water she received was given to her by Jessie Pierce, a local animal rights activist, who had been contacted by a woman who witnessed the incident.  Jessie arrived at noon. After receiving no cooperation from stockyard workers, she called the Kenton County police. A police officer arrived but was instructed by his superiors to do nothing. He left at 1 p.m.

The stockyard operator informed Jessie that he had permission from the insurance company to kill the cow but wouldn’t do it until Jessie left.  Although doubtful that he would keep his word, Jessie left at 3 p.m. She returned at 4:30 p.m. and found the stockyard deserted. Three dogs were attacking the cow, who was still alive.  Jessie contacted the state police.  Four officers arrived at 5:30 p.m.

State Trooper Jan Wuchner wanted to shoot the cow but was told that a veterinarian should kill her.  The two veterinarians at the facility would not euthanize her, claiming that in order to preserve the value of the meat, she could not be destroyed.  The butcher eventually arrived at 7:30 p.m. and shot the cow. Her body was purchased for $307.50.

When the stockyard operator was questioned by a reporter from The Kentucky Post, he laughed throughout the interview and stated, “We didn’t do a damned thing to it.” He referred to the attention given the cow by humane workers and police as “bullcrap.”

This is not a isolated  case, it is so common that animals in this condition are known in the meat industry as “downers.” The only way to ensure that animals don’t suffer for our food is to adopt a healthy, humane vegan diet.



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