General Fiction posted March 19, 2018 Chapters:  ...8 9 -10- 11... 

This work has reached the exceptional level
75 word flash fiction (please read author notes)

A chapter in the book Miscellaneous stories


by CD Richards

Bobby died today. He was six days old.

When he was born, a man took him from his mother, as she screamed her anguish. The man kept him in a box, feeding him formula, until his disposal could be arranged.

Bobby's mother is a dairy cow. So many of her children have been taken this way, she has no tears left to cry.

In the playground, children laugh, and drink the milk made for Bobby.


I wrote this story this morning for a contest. Sadly, although it was the first thing I've written today, I forgot FS works on a different timezone. And according to US time, it would have been the third piece for the day, which isn't allowed.

Having written it, I thought it a shame to let it go to waste. So, I'm posting it anyway, for the record, but not promoting. Please feel free to skip reviewing.

In Australia alone (a small country population-wise, of only 25 million), 700,000 calves are destroyed within the first few days of life. Worldwide the figure would be in the tens of millions - every year. Dairy cows must be continuously kept pregnant to ensure they can provide milk for human consumption. But there is no use for the babies, especially if they are boys. They are not "fattened" for the table, as meat breeds, not dairy, are much better suited to that purpose. Instead, at a few days of age, after much suffering, they are turned into dog food, or fertiliser.

A few lucky ones live beyond the five or six days, and become "vealers". They will be fed a milk substitute, and sometimes grain for several months, and then slaughtered. In 60% of US operations, these animals will be kept in crates so small, they can't even turn around, and they won't see sunlight (or possibly even another animal) until the day they die. Eight US states have laws prohibiting keeping the calves under those conditions. This means forty-two states don't.

This is the side of the story the dairy industry, through their ads full of happy cows on happy farms eating happy green grass don't want you to know.

Thanks for reading.
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