The Columbus Dispatch reports on the well publicized case of an undercover video showing abuse at a dairy farm in Ohio:
A Union County grand jury has decided the owner of a Union County dairy farm caught in an abuse scandal should not face criminal charges.
Jurors saw hours of video tape recorded by an undercover employee of the animal-rights group, Mercy For Animals, not just the few minutes that group posted on YouTube, [Union County Prosecutor David] Phillips said.
On the tape, Conklin employee Billy Joe Gregg is seen viciously beating and abusing cows and calves at the Plain City farm. Gregg has since been fired. He has been charged with 12 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty and faces a felony weapons charge. He has pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
Also on the tape, Conklin is shown kicking a cow that is lying down.
Phillips said the portion of the tape shown publicly was spliced together and that Conklin’s behavior was taken out of context. The Union County sheriff’s office said it had four veterinarians with experience in large-animal care review the tape.
“In context, Mr. Conklin’s actions were entirely appropriate,” Phillips wrote in a news release this morning. “The veterinarians told law enforcement that cows who remain down are at risk of injury or death. A cow’s muscles may atrophy. Once that happens, the cow may never get up and may suffer or die.”
I’ve never worked with cows so I don’t know how I would try to get one up off the ground. Maybe tempt the cow with a treat? (Do cows even like treats? I don’t know.) If the cow is not interested in getting up for the treat, what is standard protocol for motivating a cow to get up?