Clever cow learns how to smoothly deal with corn in a bag
Florence is a two year old heifer who lives on a beautiful farm in Millbrook, Ontario. She spends her day grazing on lush, green pastures set on rolling hills beside a forested area. There are ponds full of fresh water and the herd wanders freely, living a good life, as close to what nature intended as possible. The farmers treat their cows wonderfully and the cows respond to them with curiosity and affection.
Florence has found a backpack and a bag in her meadow and she checked both out curiously. The bag had been half full of corn and there are still a few handfuls left. Florence can smell the treat and she is determined to get at it. What is surprisingly clever is the way that Florence quickly figures out that her best way to get the corn out of the bag is not to try to get her snout in the open end, but rather to grab the bottom of the bag in her mouth and tip it up. With one smooth motion, she lifts the bag and shakes out the corn. She puts the bag down, nudges it aside and then begins to gobble up the kernels. Rosie, a more senior female was watching Florence and she came over to have a look. Rosie is actually Florence's mother. She checks out the situation, seems to approve, and then she wanders away to leave Florence alone with her snack.
Cows are often thought of as being intellectually lacking but it turns out that they are more clever than we give them credit for. Capable of learning and remembering, and even basic problem solving, they are actually similar in intelligence to some dogs. They have social structure in their herds and they are even capable of affection. Their communication is more complex than once thought and their attachment to other cows and even certain humans has been well documented.
Florence's farm is what is referred to as an "ethical beef farm". Such farms hold a high regard for herd health and animal well-being. They refuse to produce veal due to the improper treatment of calves to produce it, and they refuse to confine the animals in crowded barns. Florence's herd is sheltered during the cold winter months but left outside while the weather permits. Many people oppose beef consumption, or even consumption of animal products completely. Others choose to consume meat. There is a compromise available that many people are not aware of. Ethical farms such as this one are an alternative to supporting the factory farm industry that is known for cruel and unsuitable conditions for the animals. Buying meat from cruelty free farms is often a way to avoid consumption of excessive antibiotics and pesticides as well. Another bonus is that your purchase will support local business and will reduce energy waste for transportation over greater distances.
The more we learn about animals, the more we are able to respect them and understand the need to treat them well.