Sharpen your perceptions of animal-welfare issues

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How many of you dock the tails of your cows? Or, provide access to pasture?

According to researchers from the Animal Welfare Program at the University of British Columbia, public interest in the welfare of farm animals is on the rise.

Yet, the researchers add, the dairy industry has few mechanisms for discussing the contentious issues. So, they created virtual town hall meetings to allow dairy producers, industry experts and the public to discuss them.

To participate, visit the Cow Views web site and complete a simple registration process. Then, take a survey that asks such questions as: Should we provide pain relief for disbudding and dehorning dairy calves? Or, should esophageal tube feeding be used as the standard practice for providing colostrum to dairy calves?

While taking the survey, you can see what other people have said and whether your answer agrees with the plurality of people who have taken the survey ahead of you.

Informational material on each of the production practices is provided, as well.

If nothing else, it will get you to thinking about the production practices on your farm.

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