Undercover Video Captures Alleged Animal Abuse
TULARE, Calif. - A California company is vowing to cooperate with authorities investigating allegations of animal abuse at one of their livestock operations in Colorado. A national animal rights group released disturbing undercover video last week that allegedly shows workers mistreating calves at Quanah Cattle Company's operation near Greeley, in Weld County.
According to Erica Meier, executive director of the organization Compassion Over Killing,their investigator witnessed workers dragging, kicking and pulling the newborn dairy calves by the tails and ears as they were loaded into and out of trailers.
"Based on the incredibly callous and egregious mistreatment of these animals, we're calling upon local authorities to file criminal charges of cruelty to animals," Meier stated.
Three workers at the Colorado facility were cited on Friday. The Tulare feed manufacturing company, J.D. Heiskell & Company, says the workers have been fired, and that they will strengthen training and supervision of employees.
Compassion Over Killing issued a statement applauding the charges. Meier said this is why going undercover in these types of facilities is vital.
"We strongly believe that consumers have a right to know where their food is coming from, and so sharing this information with others is so crucial, because when people have this knowledge, many people want to remove their support from these industries."
Meier quoted an animal-handling expert who viewed the undercover video as saying that, had the facility been a slaughterhouse, the USDA would have shut it down.
Sheriff's deputies plan to speak with the Compassion Over Killing employee who filmed the abuses to determine if there are additional people involved in the mistreatment.
See video at COK.net. (CAUTION: DISTURBING IMAGES)