Monthly Archives: November 2012
The Benefits of Waterbeds...For Cows?
There are many stories about the horrific treatment of animals all across the country. Animals being put in overcrowded cages with barely any room to breathe, let alone move. However, from Ohio to Oregon and from Minnesota to San Francisco, there is a new 'thing' in dairy production and that is creating luxurious quarters to live in.
The trend started in Minnesota, when farmers realized they had to think outside the box if they wanted to remain competitive. Wayne Vettelson, from Minnesota, says ""the cows really like them. They took to them easily. The first time we watched the cows get on em' you seen everything jiggle. They were stepping on that and it was different. They adapted to them very fast." He says his cows have increased their production from 80 pounds of milk per day to 95. "My cows take care of me so I better take care of them," says Vettelson.
In Ohio, brothers Richard and David Conrad, have been using the waterbeds for 10 months. Richard Conrad claims the waterbeds could pay for themselves in as little as three years because of the amount of extra milk produced. "Without the cows comfortable and content, they're not going to work for us and make us money," David Conrad said. "The people in the dairy business are serious about what we do — we love our cows."
Bay Area farmer Dale McClellan was named the Southeastern Farmer of the Year for his family owned dairy farm. Cow comfort is a main criteria for the award and McClellan won for his innovative idea to install nearly 700 waterbeds for his cows.