Disturbing Ohio Dairy Farm Investigation Reveals Extreme Forms of Animal Abuse

Two days ago, ABC News Niteline (and most of the other major news networks) reported on a groundbreaking investigation. The undercover investigator was hired as a worker at Conklin Dairy Farms in Ohio and recorded footage over the course of four weeks of workers maliciously and repeatedly abusing defenseless baby calves and female cows with pitchforks and crow bars and stomping on them with their boots when they were down, leaving them critically wounded and wailing in pain. Gary Conklin, the owner himself, is even seen forcefully kicking a constrained cow repeatedly in the head and neck, setting an example for his staff. While arrests are being made, animal cruelty laws are almost nonexistent in Ohio and many are calling for nothing short of a shut down of this large operation.

Numerous agricultural watchdog groups are sounding the alarm that this kind of cruelty has become widespread and systemic in the booming factory farm industry that now raises some 10 billion farm animals a year and supplies American consumers with as much as 98% of their meat and dairy products. This high stakes industry is dominated by four giant corporations who pursue profit at any cost and operate almost free of regulation and oversight.

Some may ask: Why focus on animal abuse when there is so much suffering int he human population? The connection between human forms of abuse and animal abuse is undeniable, according to numerous recent studies on the subject. Connecting the dots of abuse is critical to prevention.

Will you help by getting involved to end this pattern of violence― prosecuting offenders, rehabilitating them and ultimately keeping them away from situations that encourage abusive behavior?

Here’s what we can do:

  1. Sign the petition calling for the shut down of Conklin Dairy Farms. Click here.
  2. Contact the prosecuting attorney in the case, Mr Aslaner at 1-937-644-8151
  3. Spread the word, forward this email on.
  4. Avoid purchasing dairy and meat products from large producers like Dean’s, Tyson, Purdue, Smithfield, Nestle, and large supermarkets or fast food chains. If there are no claims on the package, assume they come from factory farms.
  5. Post a comment on the ABC Niteline page, thanking them for bringing this story to our attention and tell them to keep reporting on this issue
  6. Donate to Mercy for Animals., the Chicago-based organization that conducted the investigation and is releasing the news to the press.
  7. Subscribe to freefromharm.org to stay informed.

Here’s what experts are saying about this investigation

This is probably the most gratuitous, sustained, sadistic animal abuse I have ever seen. The video depicts calculated, deliberate cruelty, based not on momentary rage but on taking pleasure through causing pain to cows and calves who are defenseless,” Dr. Bernard Rollin, distinguished professor of animal science at Colorado State University

“The deplorable conditions uncovered at Conklin Dairy Farms highlight the reality that animal agriculture is incapable of self-regulation and that meaningful federal and state laws must be implemented and strengthened to prevent egregious cruelty to farmed animals” —Mercy for Animals.

Some Additional Media Coverage of this case:

Read Jamie Lee Curtis’ open letter to owner Gary Cocklin and his staff.

CNN – ISSUES WITH JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL – May 27, 2010 Dairy Farm Abuse (Video with Gene Baur)

LOS ANGELES TIMES – L.A. UNLEASHED – May 27, 2010 Ohio dairy farmworker charged with animal cruelty after advocacy group releases undercover video

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