Sample letter on the farrowing crate
Letters to the Editor
I have recently become aware of a shocking example of the cruelty
of factory farming: the pig farrowing crate.
The farrowing crate is a metal cage in which sows are confined
a week before giving birth and remain imprisoned until their piglets
are 3-4 weeks old. The crate is so small that the sows cannot even
turn around, and fits them so closely that it rubs against their
skin. After their piglets are born, their mothers are unable either
to reach them if they choose, or escape their attentions if they
need to. For more than thirty days the sows remain in this cage,
able to do nothing but stand up, lie down and eat: most face a blank
wall. Naturally, mother pigs are restless and active, making nests
of twigs for their young: the farrowing crate imprisons them for
the crime of being mothers. Then, a month after the piglets are
born, they are abruptly removed - months before weaning would take
place naturally. Their mother is normally reimpregnated just days
Animals should never be kept in cages just inches larger than their
own bodies. The total frustration of any creature's mothering instincts
can never be right. Sadly, this treatment is typical of factory
farming which puts profit ahead of animal welfare every time. I
urge people to stop eating the meat produced in this barbaric way.
For information on factory farming and vegetarianism contact Viva!
at 8 York Court, Wilder St, Bristol, BS2 8QH; tel 0117 944 1000;