Farm animals are rarely thought about when we think about favourite animals. We usually think of stinky pigs and not so clever cows. But when you look closer, farm animals, just as with most other animals, have something unique and special to offer.
Considering the intellectual and emotional capacity of these animals should make anyone question eating them. When you look closer, you see something in these animals. Something that does not equate with food. Let’s expose farm animals for what they really have to offer.
“Dogs look up to man. Cats look down to man. Pigs look us straight in the eye and see an equal.”Winston Churchill
Pigs are not as dumb as popular thought has us believe. They are, in fact, the third smartest animal in the kingdom behind apes and dolphins. They can easily be taught tricks and interact with one another through complex social interactions.
When you think of pigs, you think of a dirty, smelly creature. We like the expression, “sweating like a pig” but did you know they don’t even have many sweat glands?
Lets look at some other interesting facts about these cute guys!
A part of their amazing intelligence is that they have great communication skills. 20 different vocalisations have been identified. So while you are hearing “squeal squeal squeal”, Mary is actually telling Fran about Anne’s flirt with Joe last night.
Did you know that genetically, pigs are extremely similar to humans, and even more than that, they dream just like we do!
And this communication is not limited to grown-ups, mom pigs have piggie names for their young and the babies recognize their moms call. Another reason to question that bacon on your plate?
Pigs are seen as dirty. They are covered in mud and eat, well, anything. But pigs are actually clean animals.
Given the choice, pigs choose not to defecate close to areas where they eat or live. This is a big issue for animal rights advocates as commercial farming of these animals is extremely confined and dirty. Animals should have the choice to act naturally and do what comes naturally to them. Commercial animal farming very rarely affords a pig the choice.
Cows are gentle, social animals. They have the ability to recognize more than 100 other cows, and they form close friendships with members of their herd. Researchers report that cows grieve when their friends or family members die.
Cows are cool. They are in fact really interesting. They love to play and be social with one another. You can see this in many of the videos on YouTube where they run and play ball. Yes. Cows play ball.
Cows are exceptionally affectionate and sociable. They love cuddles and scratches! Cows are also known to get stressed easily resulting in less milk produced and release hormones in their urine alerting their fellow cows that they are stressed out.
Cows also love being around other cows. They can get depressed when alone. They have maternal connections as deep as humans do – some cows have even been seen wandering around for kilometres looking for their young.
After cows give birth, their young will suckle with mom until about 9 months old and stick with their moms for the rest of their lives. Aside from this amazing connection, cows establish bonds in herds and stick to it for their entire lives. New additions or losses cause a lot of distress!
If you haven’t seen a cow running around, or playing with a ball, where have you been living? They love a good game of ball!
But what is most interesting is that they have a well-developed sense of touch! They have nociceptors, thermoreceptors and mechanoreceptors on across their skin and muzzles, so textures and objects excite them endlessly. Go visit a farm animal sanctuary and test the theory out!
They also love problem-solving – scientists observed cows solving problems in obtaining their food and the cow’s heart rates increased when completing the task, indicating excitement! How awesome!
Chickens love to play and will run, jump and sunbathe when given the chance
Cluck Cluck! Chickens seem quite senseless but in fact they quite a lot of sense! For anyone that has owned chockens on a small scale scale they will attest to their different personalities and also that chickens are quite intelligent.
Chickens have an amazing ability… More so than what humans are capable of. They can distinguish between 100 different chickens within their species. Can you tell apart 100 different people? Pretty amazing I think!
On top of knowing 100 different faces of their own kind, they are also able to tell their owners apart, recognizing up to 100 different human faces.
Chickens are also able to talk to their friends about things. Food, calling different young and even tell others in the flock about different predators lurking around. Great when you are fairly low on the food chain!
There are over 500 breeds of chickens. That’s a lot! Check out this amazing book by photographers Moreno Monti and Matteo Tranchellini showcasing their beauty.
When we think of chickens we think the usual white and red but these photographers really shed light on their amazing beauty and diversity. They sure are great in front of the camera!
Chickens also lay different coloured eggs… according to their earlobes! Red earlobes lay brown eggs and white earlobes lay white eggs. But the colour of a chicken’s feathers is not the same as its ears!
Love them all
Everyone loves pets. They love cats or dogs or maybe even both. We prize our pet birds, bunnies or guinea pigs. But when it comes to farm animals, we somehow fall short of compassion and tolerance for abuse and cruelty.
Animals involved in factory farming, clothing and the various other industries that exploit animals endure suffering for their whole lives.
As vegans, we aim to bring to light the inherent intelligence and beauty of all animals. We aim to respect their right to love and most importantly, we aim to allow these animals to live a life… without fear.
At Dolma, our enduring love and respect for the sentience of all animals mean that none of our products uses or harm animals in any way. Our beautiful Women’s fragrances and Men’s aftershaves are 100% vegan and cruelty-free.