It's clear that animal agriculture kills billions of animals, including cows, chickens, pigs, fish, and many others, and although that alone is absolutely horrible, the death and destruction doesn't end there! It isn't just the animals that most people knowingly kill that are dying, but countless others that all suffer as a result of the cruel industry, and the planet itself which is slowly being killed by it.
Billions of animals suffer and are brutally killed because of the meat, dairy, and egg industries. Sooner or later, every creature involved in animal agriculture will end up in the slaughterhouse where they face a ghastly death that no living being should ever have to go through!
But prior to being gruesomely slaughtered, these innocent creatures must endure a lifetime full of suffering, with their fates being based solely on species and gender; not on dreams or aspirations as they should be!
Female cows are commonly used as dairy cows, systematically being impregnated over and over again, having their newborn calves continuously being stolen from them, and having to bear that pain up to 7 times before being killed. Males born to the dairy industry have no worth in the eyes of the farmers, so they are killed at a young age, either as veal or cheap beef. Cattle raised for beef, live either in a field or crammed in a dark, stuffy building smothered by the stench of rot and decay. Although some cattle are raised outdoors, the large majority spend their entire lives indoors, rarely breathing in fresh air. Then, at the young age of 18 months old, they are stuffed in crowded trucks and shipped off for hours on end where they are then hung by their hind leg and have their throats slit!
Broiler chickens (those raised for their meat) spend 5-7 weeks locked inside cages in a factory-like building, before being boiled alive! Had they not been killed, they could have lived up to 8 years. Egg-laying hens live longer, about 8 weeks, but once they can't lay anymore eggs, they too are then slaughtered! When male chickens are born in the egg industry, many don't even make it a single day, being killed as soon as possible!
Many other animals are raised for human consumption, and regardless of species, none of them live the happy lives that they should be allowed to! Also, when it comes to the massacre of animals for human enjoyment, the term "humane" is non-existent. Killing will never be humane, and if you think otherwise, try being "humanely slaughtered" yourself and see just how cruel it truly is.
Besides the mass murder directed towards animals that are commonly considered "food", even more animals and even the environment itself are dying due to animal agriculture!
Livestock covers approximately 45% of the Earth's total land surface, and even more is being cleared to make additional room. This is resulting in the destruction of forests, destroying habitats and killing the wildlife that live there. Every second, 1 to 2 acres of rainforests are being cleared, mostly for raising livestock and growing their feed. Already, some 70% of the Amazon Rainforest has been destroyed, and animal agriculture has been responsible for up to 91% of that! These clearings are causing an estimated 137 insect, animal, and plant species to be lost daily!
Plant-based lifestyles, however, require much less space and just by going vegan you'd be saving nearly 11,000 square feet of forest each year (about 30 square feet every day!). Besides destroying the forests that help to remove greenhouse gases from our atmosphere, these horrible industries are responsible for a large majority of the emissions. The exact number is still being debated, but it could be up to 51% of worldwide greenhouse gases! By going vegan, you can reduce your carbon footprint by 50-74%, saving 7,300 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering our atmosphere each year!
Even though animal agriculture is the leading cause of desertification and deforestation, that's not the only reason why it's killing more animals than those mentioned on the labels. In order to prevent the loss of livestock, farmers and the USDA are hunting animals that are seen as a threat to the animals that humans eat. About 175 threatened and endangered species are targeted, including bears, mountain lions, bobcats, and wolves, with the coyote being the most heavily hunted. Since traps and neck snares are commonly used, the targeted animals aren't the only ones being killed! Harmless animals like beavers and prairie dogs are among those, and even the federally protected bald eagle has been a victim to these killings. The USDA has admitted to killing over a million animals each year for this purpose, and in 2017 alone they killed 1.3 million native wild animals including:
These tragedies don't end on land though! Every single day, enough fishing line is set to wrap around the Earth 500 times! With all of these nets in the ocean, it's unavoidable that animals other than fish will be caught. So not only are billions of fish killed, but for every pound of fish caught, 5 pounds of other marine animals will become trapped and die! That includes marine species like dolphins, turtles, seals, and many others.
Nets and fishing lines aren't the only threats to the ocean and all of the animals that live in it! There's also the fact that animal agriculture is the leading cause of ocean dead zones, having created more than 500 so far! A "dead zone" is a region of the ocean that lacks enough oxygen to support marine life. Studies show that a fishless ocean is in our sights by 2048, and with fish being crucial to the aquatic food chain, the extinction of countless other ocean species isn't far off either! Can you imagine a world without whales, turtles, or dolphins? Well, unfortunately, that's where we're heading!
There is no way that animal agriculture and a green planet will ever coexist. If we don't change our ways and adopt a plant-based lifestyle, our planet faces an inevitable demise. Go vegan before it's too late!