Why Should I Go Vegan?

Most people go vegan because they have become aware of the pain that animals have to suffer during their lives, and at the end of their lives at slaughter. More than 100 million farm animals are killed each year in Ireland, and more than 120,000 are used in animal testing. Animals are also used for sport and entertainment. None of this is necessary, and humans can live very healthy lives without animal products.

For the Cows

Cows, like humans and every other mammal, only produce milk after giving birth. They are made pregnant by artificial insemination. If the calf that is born is male there is usually no use for it, so it is either killed or sent abroad for veal. Cows have been bred to produce up to 10 times more milk than a calf would need. After about 5 years their bodies are considered ‘spent’ and they are sent to slaughter.

For the pigs

Pigs are kept indoors in dark sheds where they cannot indulge in their normal behaviours. Frustration and being in close contact with others causes them to bite each other’s tails, so the tails are cut off and their teeth are ‘clipped’. Pigs who have given birth are kept confined in a gestation crate for many weeks where they cannot get up and turn around. Pigs used for food are killed at 6 months.

For the Chickens

Chickens bred for meat have short, miserable lives in large indoor sheds surrounded by hundreds or thousands of others. They have been bred to grow very fast in a short space of time. This can cause lameness or broken legs and the animal dies from lack of food and water as they cannot move.

Chickens bred for eggs are usually kept confined indoors in small cages with slatted floors and limited space. They have been bred to produce up to 300 eggs a year, whereas their wild counterparts produce only 10-15 eggs a year.

For the Turkeys

Turkeys are highly intelligent and sensitive creatures. Like chickens, they have been bred to grow very fast in a short space of time. This can result in lameness and broken legs. They are slaughtered at around 6 months.

For the lambs

Lambs are slaughtered when they are only a few months old.

For the Fish

Many people believe that fish do not feel pain. However, a University of Liverpool study concluded that fish can and do feel pain, with a similarity to that experienced by mammals including humans. Fish also suffer on fish farms. They are packed closely together in a small space and suffer from various diseases as a result.

Veganism also has huge benefits for the environment and climate. A large number of research papers in recent years have illustrated the detrimental effects of animal agriculture on the climate and environment.