This hidden camera footage reportedly filmed at one of Bavaria’s largest dairy farms shows a pregnant cow apparently being shot while giving birth as others are kicked and dragged by diggers as they die in horrific conditions.
The treatment of the cows, reportedly at the Endres dairy farm in Bad Groenenbach, in the district of Unterallgaeu in Bavaria, in Germany, was secretly filmed for thirty days during May and June and shows them being cruelly tortured, including a man apparently shooting a pregnant cow in the head while she is giving birth.
WARNING: DISTRESSING AND GRAPHIC CONTENT
The footage shows the appalling treatment of the animals at the farm where they were starved, left thirsty and abused, according to a report by the animal activist organisation Soko Tierschutz.
The footage shows animals being beaten and left to die, with their carcasses then stored next to the living, with a pile of dead cows visibly rotting near or in one of the farm buildings.
The video shows them being hit and kicked by staff and the animals are dragged around the farm by the digger attachment of a tractor.
The public prosecutor in Memmingen confirmed they are investigating the case and are currently checking whether the video footage provided to them by the animal activist organisation is genuine.
The prosecutor confirmed they will be interviewing the owners and staff at the Bad Groenenbach milk plant as part of their investigation.
The report by the animal activist organisation found that the animals were often left suffering from their injuries and dying a slow death instead of being put out of their misery.
Dozens of cows that were reportedly sick were taken to a slaughterhouse – the Vion Slaughterhouse, even though the slaughter of sick cows is banned.
Soko reported Vion to the police for the alleged slaughter of sick animals. Soko have filed charges against Endres for animal abuse. They also filed charges against the vet in charge of the animals claiming that he was involved in covering up the mistreatment of the animals.
Friedrich Mulln from Soko in Augsburg in Bavaria, Germany said: “This research has uncovered the myth of milk production in the idyllic Allgau region. It has long been part of the mass farming techniques which have terrible consequences for the animals. Everyone knows about the horrid consequences of mass livestock farming of pigs and poultry.
“Consumers of milk products have to be aware that the methods used in dairy farming has similar terrible effects on the animals. We are appealing to authorities to take a hard stance against these practices and appeal to consumers to buy plant-based products in order to end this barbaric treatment of the animals.”
Politicians in Bavaria have spoken about their shock at the footage. Eric Beisswenger from the Christian Social Union (CSU) said: “The footage is very concerning. It will really affect the farming profession.”
Christoph Skutella spokesman for the Free Democratic Party (FDP) Bavaria said: “How people treat their animals is a reflection on what kind of people they are.”
Endres has thousands of cows on its farms and produces 40 tonnes of milk per day supplying various companies throughout Germany. They have not commented on the case.
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