11th May 2015
This should never have happened
It should never have happened that a kindly, albeit ill-equipped and knowledge-deficient couple were sold a tiny bobby calf by a farmer. It should never have happened that the farmer made no enquiries as to the couple’s circumstance, knowledge or property details. It should never have happened that the little calf was sent off alone, despite cows being highly social animals who cherish the company of their own kind. It should never have happened that her life was reduced to $40.00 ($15.00 more than her male counterparts). But what really should never have happened, above all else, was that this little baby animal was taken from her mother in the first few hours of her life, so that the milk intended for her could be harvested for human consumption.
Not long after Jasmine was put into the back of the family station wagon, things began to head south. Already suffering the stress of separation from her mother, the little one’s vulnerable immune system came up against assault after unintended assault that saw her health deteriorate badly. Sending her loving human carers’ world into a spin were not only the high costs of caring for sickly calves, but the lack of knowledge and expertise for doing so. Arriving at our sanctuary was a near moribund little jersey heifer, blood splattered diarrhoea and lethargy meant we had only hours to tip the balance, if we had any chance of doing so. But Jasmine wants to live, despite all her setbacks and hardships she is telling us this a world in which she wants to stay. Only time, kindness and all the TLC we can muster will be her judge and jury.
In the last 12 months here in Australia, there were just under 700,000 tiny doe-eyed innocent calves just like Jasmine, who never got to share their mother’s love and sweet milk, who never got to romp in the sunshine and who will never grow old or chew cud until their hearts are content. This never should have happened, yet it does, all because of one word – dairy.