Did you know that farm animals and our pets have a lot in common? Just like our pets, farm animals are intelligent, social and depend on people for proper food, shelter and care. Some of the most common farm animals are pigs, chickens, cows, sheep, goats, horses, donkeys, mules, domestic ducks, geese and turkeys.
- Pigs have a very good sense of smell. They help police officers look for drugs, farmers look for truffles (similar to mushrooms), and soldiers look for landmines.
- Cows use their tails as fly swatters and to communicate with each other.
- Chickens cackle and cluck to their babies while they are still in the egg.
- Horses form strong bonds and recognize their friends easily.
- Geese choose a mate for life.
- Turkeys like to be petted and spend time with company.
Sometimes we hear sad stories in the news about people trespassing on other people’s property and hurting farm animals as a prank. Or sometimes there are irresponsible people who don’t provide proper care. There are even factory farms that are like puppy mills—the animals live in filthy, horrible, unhealthy conditions. The factory is more concerned with making money by selling the animals.
What farm animals need
- Space to walk, run and play.
- Clean water to drink.
- Healthy food to eat.
- A comfortable place to rest.
- Shelter from bad weather.
- Veterinary check-ups and care when they are sick.
A lot of people don’t realize that farm animals have feelings, too. That’s why it is important to learn about them and have laws to protect them. Just like our pets, these animals want to be taken care of by responsible people. Even if you don’t have a farm animal, you can still help by teaching others what you learn about them!