Food Animals

I read this post from a fellow blogging friend, Crystal Cattle, and I totally fell in love with it and had to share it.  Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton have always been two of my favorite country singers and this quote from her only gives me another reason to love them more!  Enjoy and thanks to Crystal Cattle, check out her Facebook Fan Page and on Twitter.

Food Animals

Food Animals vs. Pets – there is a difference

Miranda Lambert has done a nice job of explaining the difference between food animals and pets. Miranda Lambert is not only a superstar in terms of country music, but she knows that protein is a great way to keep her energy up and that “there are some animals you feed and some animals that feed you.” Yes,Miranda Lambert you are now an even bigger superstar in my books. aka Superstar

Food animals seems like a simple concept. They are the animals that you eat, but yet I still get asked all the time how I can eat my cows. I talk a lot about my cattle on my blog, and there are certain ones that are really close to my heart – like CDY Signature 2N. She is one of my favorites, but I also know that she is a beef animal.
 Signature’s job for the last eight years has been to raise calves that we can sell as seedstock animals to other purebred cattle breeders. The bull calves go onto sire (father) calves that will be fed out for beef production, and her heifer calves remain in my herd or are sold to other purebred cattle breeders.
 This is one of the 2011 bull calves out of Signature
However, Signature is getting older and for the last year has had some hip problems. This winter it got a lot worse, and my family and I don’t want to see her going through more pain next winter. So after her calf is weaned off this fall I will sell her, and her ultimate fate will be hamburger. Yes, it is sad, but I grew up knowing that cows are for food, dogs are for pets.
Here is Miranda Lambert’s full quote on food animals from her story.
Q: Was it hard slaughtering animals that were your pets?
A: Dad would give us two rabbits as our pets, or we’d have one pig we could name. They explained that not every animal was a pet—some were providing for our family. It sounds weird to other people, but I look at it like, there are some animals you feed and some animals that feed you.
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27 responses to “Food Animals

  1. Interesting. I thought she was a vegetarian and supporter of PETA. Excellent quote though. Can be tweeked by farmers: We feed animals that feed people.
    Thanks for letting us know about this.

  2. I believe it is Carrie Underwood that is the vegetarian and supports the HSUS.
    Always liked Blake and Miranda. Now I like them even more!

  3. Pingback: Meat vs. Pets·

  4. Pingback: Meat vs. Pets | Animal Free Lifestyle·

  5. Thanks for your perspective. I appreciate your connection with and treatment of your animals, and actively encourage my meat-eating friends and family to “know your farmer” instead of blindly eating factory farmed products.

    I was also raised that some animals were pets and some were food, but have recently asked myself the ever-important question, “why?” Just because cows have meant food to people historically doesn’t mean it’s necessary or right. This realization has changed my life for the better–in ways I never imagined.

    Best wishes.

    • Lindsey, thank you so much for your comment and I respect your view. My family and I do work hard to take the best care of our animals, so thank you for your compliment. Although I respect your choice to not to eat meat, lean meat in moderation is a healthy part of a diet. Thank you so much for your comment and your read!

  6. So, just for the record you take someone “getting older and for the last year has had some hip problems” to be a good reason to kill that individual? I hope you don’t ever find work in the elderly care profession.

    • Jong, my farm is in Canada, and in the winters we obviously have a lot of ice and snow. It was very difficult for her to get around as she became further along in her pregnancy. The situation could become much worse if she were to fall and not be able to get back up again. It could also mean losing the calf inside of her.

  7. Crystal and friends: It is certainly understandable that you feel the way you do. Whenever a person’s way of life and livelihood are threatened, he or she becomes defensive. But ask yourself this — if you received no financial benefit from raising animals AND sending them to slaughter, would you still do it? Unless you can answer an absolute “yes” to both those questions, you may be in the wrong line of work. It’s only natural to hold onto the values that we were taught as children. I, too, had a father who raised animals for food. I learned in my animal science classes in college about the common and accepted procedures for raising and killing food animals, and blindly accepted those values. My interests, however, lie in a different direction: I make my living by keeping animals healthy and alive. Nevertheless, it took me a long time to be able to think on my own and examine my own beliefs (I was over 50!), until I concluded that I no longer wanted to be a part of a system that kills other sentient beings for my own (dubious) benefit. I stopped using all animal products, and I can sincerely say that I have never regretted my decision.

    If you derived no financial benefit from it, would you still send your favorite cow to slaughter? Doesn’t she deserve to live out her remaining years in peace after she has given you so much? If she is indeed ready to leave this world, wouldn’t it be more loving to shoot her yourself, rather than to make her last hours on this earth full of pain and fear as she is transported in a noisy trailer who knows how many miles, only to be herded onto a kill floor, rendered unconscious with a captive bolt, hoisted into the air by her back leg, and have her throat slit and her body gutted?

    • Polliwog I completely respect your opinion. One of the best things about today is that we have a choice in what we consume and the products we use everyday. Of course my family receives financial benefit from these animals. Although, farming is my passion it is also a way for me to provide a living for my family. These animals would not be in existence if there wasn’t people that wanted to choose to eat meat and I will do my best to provide a wholesome, healthy product in the most humane way possible. Animal welfare standards are continuing to change for the better, and my family is doing our best to make sure we keep up with them and continue to treat our animals with the best care and compassion possible.

      • Thanks for your response and for not kicking me off your blog! I have no doubt that you take exemplary care of your animals, and I am of course aware that you benefit financially from your business, but you didn’t answer my question — if you weren’t paid for the work, would you still do it? In other words, if you won the lottery tomorrow, would you continue to raise animals for food? Or would you give it up and rest easier knowing you weren’t sending thousands of animals to their deaths every year? You say you want to provide animals as wholesome food for people who want to eat them, but can you show me a scientific study that shows that the saturated fat and cholesterol in meat and dairy products is HEALTHY for humans? Not merely NOT UNHEALTHY, but actually a benefit? And of course the animals would not be in existence if you didn’t raise them — you control their breeding, so there always are many of them. But don’t fear that cattle would go extinct if people decided not to eat them — after all, we don’t eat dogs in this country and there are plenty of them. There are always going to be people (me among them) that will care for and revere animals for their intrinsic characteristics and personalities, even if we don’t derive economic benefit from them. Thanks for letting me share my viewpoint, and give your cow a kiss from me :)

      • Polliwog, I first of all apologize for taking so long to respond back to you. Although this isn’t an excuse, we are working hard to get all of our crops planted now that we have a few nice days! Michigan hasn’t been blessed with very much sun this spring. To answer your first question, I would continue to do what I do if I won the lottery today. Would it change the dynamics of my decision making, yes, but I love what I do. To produce food for the world is something I take seriously and I find to be an honor. There are decades of research that show the health benefits of lean meat and 3 servings of dairy products a day. There are several reputable health associations that support dairy in a healthy diet including the National Osteoporosis Foundation, U.S. Surgeon General, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and many other leading organizations. If you would like to get more specific with me feel free to email me and I can keep working on it for you.

  8. Hi, I think we can all agree that the main issue of pets versus food animals is that they both feel joy and pain. There is nothing wrong with treating food animals with the same respect and compassion that we give our companion animals. I don’t eat meat, but I stongly support farmers who raise thier animals with compassion. I wish everyone who chooses to eat meat would research where there food comes from. I think that the small farmers who do it the right way would prosper.

    • Jen,
      I totally agree that we need to raise our animals with compassion. My family and I work hard to make sure each animal is well taken care of and treated with total request. I appreciate your comment and your insight, it was great to hear from you.

  9. Ashley, great post and great perspective. As always, you’ve raised important points and shared valuable content. Thanks to Crystal, too, for the original post. You both are wonderful members of the agricultural community and I’m blessed to know you both. Thanks as always for what you do and keep on truckin’.

  10. LOVE Miranda Lambert!! Great post Ashley. We love our cows but truly understand what an important job we have.. feeding the world. In the next 50 years we will need to produce 100% more food… with only 70% of the land.

    • Thank you so much for the comment Katie! Sorry it took me so long to get your comment approved. You’re right, we have a lot of work to do in the future but I think we have a great generation to take the challenge on.

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