According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a Cash Cow is defined “as someone or something that makes a lot of money for a business, organization etc.” A quick search of Wikipedia told me that “the term cash cow is a metaphor for a “dairy cow” used on farms to produce milk, offering a steady stream of income.”
Of course every cow on a dairy farm is a cash cow to a dairy farmer. However, cows are a huge investment. It takes about $2,000 Cdn dollars to raise a heifer to the point that she is old enough to produce milk as a cow and it takes a long time after that for farmers to see any return on their investment, especially when you factor in the ongoing costs for things like feed and veterinary care. As an aside, the most money ever paid for a cow was 1.2 million dollars the the Canadian cow Missy!
If you buy a new car you do your best to take care of it so that it will serve you well for many years. You change the oil, you get it waxed and you rotate the tires. The same goes for dairy cows. Farmers want to look after their investments so that they are profitable for the long term. Profitability and animals care go hand in hand. They give cows well balanced diets of high quality feed, routine veterinary care, scheduled hoof trims, vaccinations and protection from predators and the elements. Cows even get a two month rest period as a “dry cow” between calvings. It takes a lot of TLC and hard work to keep cattle healthy and profitable.
“Profitability and animal care go hand in hand.”
Dairy farmers don’t just look at their cattle as a short term investment. Many dairy farmers can trace their cow families back many generations. They are proud of their cattle’s genetics. Good genetics bring profits through longevity and high milk production so great care is taken to help their cattle reach their full potential. In Canada we do welfare audits with our proAction initiative to ensure that cows are being treated humanely because we love our cows. It’s not only the right thing to do it is also the logical thing to do. Profitable cows are cows that are treated well by compassionate farmers. 🐮❤️
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