Earlier this month, hundreds of dairy calves reportedly died as the result of a brutal heat wave in the Midwest. Now, the animal-rights organization PETA is demanding answers, urging state officials to further investigate the incidents and criminally charge the responsible dairy farmers if appropriate.
The deaths involved dairy calves between two to seven days of age that had been housed in outdoor calf hutches with no shade. Read more about the deaths here.
On Thursday, PETA sent a letter to Edward F. Wall of the Wisconsin Department of Justice, asking that the deaths be investigated as possible violations of W.S.A. § 951.02, “which prohibits one from treating any animal in a ‘cruel manner.’”
Dairy Herd Network readers also were shocked to hear about the deaths.
“This is beyond senseless. Beyond the loss of the calves, how can someone just leave the little calves out in the sun? Have some common sense people!! Think how this looks beyond the dairy circles. Another bad publication for our industry,” one reader commented.
For more tips on handling heat stress in calves, click here.