Goose came to us from an older vegan couple who needed some help down-sizing their responsibilities. They rescued Goose from an auction, which is where a lot of bovine males are discarded as byproducts of the dairy industry. His breed is called a “Jersey“, which are typically used as part of the dairy industry. Goose was taken from his mother as a baby so that humans could consume the milk which was meant for him. When we accepted Goose into our care, it was with the idea that we would have a brother for Popcorn. The two boys are now inseparable on their very private pasture surrounded by some of the more beautiful native deciduous trees on our property. They are frequently caught napping together in their barn in total peace. It’s the way we wish for every animal to spend their days.
Goose is a Jersey steer. While people typically use the word cow as a catchall phrase for bovines, he is a neutered male, which is called a steer. There is frequent confusion about how a male can be considered part of the dairy industry, since males do not produce milk. Just like with humans, 50 percent of all babies are born male. Seeing as how it is unnecessary to have that many males for breeding purposes, and it is an inconvenience to house and feed them, the males are considered byproducts who need to be removed quickly from the herd. Their fate is either that they are placed in veal crates or they go to auction to be sold for low grade meat. Depending on their breed, dairy males like Goose who are lucky enough to find sanctuary can live for well over 15-20 years.