I recently had the time to visit a long lost school friend whom resides in Birmingham City Centre a world away from the rural
agrarianism , we ended up along with several other people around the table striking up a conversation about cows It started by addressing the long held myths some people truly believe .
Myth 1: Cows Have 4 Stomachs
This is one of the most common myths about cows of all time. We all grew up believing that cows had 4 stomachs and loved impressing people with that fact. But sadly, it’s not true.
Cows actually have one stomach with 4 compartments. They belong to a group of animals called ruminants– animals that have 4 stomach compartments.
Each compartment has a different purpose for the cow’s digestive system. Here’s a breakdown of these compartments:
The Rumen: This is the largest compartment, and it’s where the cow digests her feed. It’s also where nutrients are broken down and fermented, converting into energy.
The Reticulum: When the cow’s food gets here next, it gets filtered so that anything the cow wasn’t supposed to eat doesn’t make it any further. For example, she could have accidentally eaten a piece of wire or a rock. Cud is formed here, too.
The Omasum: Here, the food is filtered and broken down. Water is squeezed out, and cud is broken down.
The Abomasum: This is the final stage. Nutrients found from breaking down the food are either sent into the cow’s bloodstream or her intestines.
Myth 2: Cows Don’t Sweat.
This myth is a little more complicated than a “yes” or “no” answer.
Technically, cows don’t sweat in the same way that other mammals do. They don’t have the same type of sweat glands that other animals have.
But cows do technically sweat. It’s done through a natural heat evaporation system in the body.
Heat evaporates out of their body when they’re too hot, but it happens so fast you may not have noticed any damp skin.
So, while they may not be panting or visibly sweating like other animals, they are definitely managing the heat.
They also deal with heat through their respiratory glands. When it gets too hot, a cow’s body will naturally begin to store and reduce use of water, like urinating less, to prevent dehydration.
Myth 3: Cows Hate The Colour Red.
People believe this because matadors in bullfights use red flags to trigger the bull’s attention.
But the truth is that cows actually can’t see the colour red. They are red-green colour-blind.
This means that they see every shade of red and green as a shade of black and grey. But they don’t see entirely black and white! They can also see shades of yellow and blue.
So why do matadors always use red flags in their bullfights?
It’s the movement of the flag that catches the bull’s attention, not the colour of the flag. So the red flag is simply more of a tradition and part of the costume.
You’d probably be angry, too, if you had a flag being waved in your face!
Myth 4: Milk is full of antibiotics.
This is totally false. Any milk that leaves the farm cannot have antibiotics in it. All milk is tested for antibiotics before the processor even accepts it from the farm.
Myth 5: Cows don’t produce cream in milk
The standardised cow’s milk that you find in supermarkets or most corner shops is most likely homogenised. When you homogenise milk you force it through small holes so that the fat molecules break down and stay suspended in the liquid, preventing the cream from rising to the top.
Because the fat in homogenised milk is evenly distributed, it creates a uniform product that makes it easier for big dairy producers to mix lots of different milks from different herds together. It also makes it easier to filter the milk into different fat percentages. Homogenising cow’s milk adds no nutritional value.
Myth 6: Farmers hate their cows and are cruel to them
You can visit any dairy farm and see how Dairy farmers care for their cows, both because they are the basis of their farm process and because it’s simply the right thing to do.
Myth 7:Milking machines hurt the cow’s teats
The milking machines work by placing a suction cup over each teat. The suction is not constant, but more like a wave, so that it mimics the non-continuous action of a calf sucking.
Most milking machines are regularly serviced so they milk the cow gently, quickly and completely .
Happy cows liked to be milked .