Murmac Farms
Cactus Acres
Winchester Dairy
Are your milk and cheese the products of blatant animal cruelty?
Every time Mercy For Animals undercover investigators go behind the closed doors of factory farms they document widespread animal abuse that shocks and horrifies most people. Multiple investigations at factory farms across the country have exposed sickening cruelty:
Workers viciously kicking and punching cows in their faces and bodies, beating them with rakes, and stabbing them with sharp objects
A “downed” cow being kicked and beaten, forcefully sprayed in her face and nostrils, and dragged by a rope around her neck
Workers using pruning shears to cut through the sensitive skin, nerves, and tailbones of cows without any painkillers
Sick or injured cows suffering from open wounds, infections, and serious injuries without proper veterinary care
Cruelty Critics
“The handling of dairy cows in this video is not acceptable. … Employees must be trained to never kick or hit a cow's udder or face. High pressure water shot in the eye is abusive.”
Dr. Temple Grandin
“To watch [workers] repeatedly punching, kicking, and twisting the tails of these gentle animals, who have no idea of why they are being hurt is almost too much to bear.”
Dr. Bernard Rollin
“Instances of cruel treatment of cows are so numerous that it’s clearly not an occasional occurrence, but rather a systemic pattern of sadistic mistreatment of the cows which the management is unfortunately condoning, encouraging, and participating in.”
Dr. Armaiti May
“Tail docking has been shown to negatively impact the welfare of the cows, causing chronic pain and interference with normal behavior. The procedure has not been shown to provide any benefit either to the cow or to the quality of the milk.”
Dr. Lee Schrader
“There are major welfare issues associated with tail docking in dairy cattle. There is no scientific data in the literature to support tail docking, and it does not positively influence cleanliness of udders or legs or quality of milk. The procedure has been shown to cause short-term discomfort and potentially chronic pain.”
Dr. Debra Teachout
“Animals are definitely handled very roughly in most scenes. … The continuous kicking, hitting with hands and poles and slapping of the cows does frighten and hurt the animals. It does indicate the workers are not trained or managed well.”
Dr. James Reynolds
“Tail docking is an unnecessary fad that involves severing the skin, nerves, and spinal column of cows without painkillers. Studies show the practice provides no benefit to the cows or milk quality and has no place in modern dairy production.”
Dr. Holly Cheever

Dairy’s Dirty Secret

Like dogs, cats, zebras, and all other mammals, including humans, cows produce milk only when they are pregnant or nursing—and for the same reason: to nourish their young. The dairy industry steals this milk from calves for humans.

Dairy’s Dirty Secret

To maximize profits, the dairy industry keeps cows in a constant cycle of pregnancy, birth, and lactation. Typically, baby calves are dragged away from their mothers within a day of birth so that all their mothers' milk can be sold for profit.

Dairy’s Dirty Secret

Female calves are either sold for meat or used as replacements for the “spent” cows in the dairy herd. Male calves, since they don’t produce milk, are often chained by the neck in tiny wooden boxes until they are killed for veal.
Fed up with cruelty?
There are alternatives!
Switch and Ditch
Why not just skip the cruelty, not to mention the saturated fat and cholesterol, in favor of delicious vegetarian alternatives like these?


There’s no need to have a cow. Dairy-free yogurts are delicious and full of healthy probiotics. Choose from traditional or Greek-style. There are tons of great flavors.

Cream Cheese and Sour Cream

Try a schmear of dairy-free cream cheese on your bagel or a dollop of veggie sour cream in your burrito and find out how amazing these cruelty-free versions taste. Tofutti cream cheese is also incredible in dairy-free cheesecake. Yum!

FAB FACT: Free of lactose and cholesterol and lower in kidney-stone-promoting oxalates.


Mooo-ve over cow’s milk. Dairy-free milks, made from soy, rice, almond, or hemp, pack a mighty flavor and nutritional punch. They come nutritionally enriched in plain, sweet vanilla, creamy chocolate, and strawberry flavors

FAB FACT: Almond milk contains 50 percent more calcium than cow’s milk. Also, nut milks contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals not found in cow’s milk.


Smile and say “veggie cheese.” Top off your pizzas, burgers, and pastas with the growing variety of dairy-free cheeses that melt and stretch like your old favorites. Available in cheddar, pepper jack, mozzarella, and jalapeño garlic havarti.

FAB FACT: Free of cholesterol, trans fats, and preservatives.


You won’t believe it’s not butter. No, seriously, you won’t. Use dairy-free butters for cooking, baking, and spreading.

FAB FACT: No cholesterol or trans fats.


Just as tasty and healthier than the animal-based version, veggie mayo is great on sandwiches and perfect for creating creamy dressings.

FAB FACT: No preservatives, cholesterol, or animal fat.

Ice Cream

Dive into decadence! Dairy-free ice cream, made with soy or coconut milk, is rich and creamy and comes in many different flavors, from chocolate peanut butter swirl and mint chocolate chip to butter pecan.

FAB FACT: No cruelty to cows.

Need more ideas? We’ve got you covered. Visit for fun tips, delicious recipes, and more.

The best way for individual consumers to help end this cruelty is to leave animals off their plates.