This image comes from Peaceful Prairie Sanctuary, which paints a powerfully emotive word picture of how bovine mothers grieve for their babies, and concludes starkly that:

“All dairy operations, whether conventional or organic, exist solely

by doing to millions of defenseless females

the worst thing anyone can do to a mother.”

You don’t have to be a mother yourself to appreciate the horror of having a baby wrenched from you, but if you are one, the very animal instincts you experience when carrying, feeding and protecting your baby may intensify the compassion you feel for other mammalian mothers.

Sayward Rebhal writes eloquently about the powerful primal connection that she felt as one mother to another when watching the plight of an animal mother while feeding her own baby:

“A beautiful heifer, a brand new mother still slick with sweat from her labor, was screaming as she paced and bucked and fought for the calf that two men were dragging away from her. I remember feeling the weight of her agony crashing over me. My chest clenched tight, and I looked down at my own sweet baby snuggled against me. And I wept for her.”

She goes on:

“I realised that these exploits of agriculture, this use and abuse of the reproductive cycle, is not just a crime against females. It is, in fact, the systematic sabotage of mothering.”

Read the full piece here.

In a post entitled Mother’s Milk, Angel Flinn of Gentle World writes:

“When babies are terrified for their lives,when mothers are grieving for their stolen young …

They may not be human — they may be cows, pigs, sheep or elephants …

But to each other, they are simply mother and child.”

Read the full piece here.

If you are a mother or you hope one day to become one, if you dare to stop and really think about the role that thwarted motherhood plays in sustaining the meat and dairy industries, if you feel compassion for other mothers and have the capacity to extend your compassion beyond the bounds of your own species, then going vegan is the only logical compassionate response.


For a more uplifting take on this perspective, read about the ex-breeding cow who was re-homed in a sanctuary in Australia, where she gave birth to her 13th calf, the very first calf she will be allowed to keep forever.


If you want to start eating compassionately but aren’t quite sure how to go about it, read How to eat vegan.