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Old January 21, 2013, 03:47 PM   #1
brmfan
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A whole new meaning

Well, I have always taken pride on making quick and clean kills, out of respect and also so I wouldn't have to chase down a wounded animal. Now my wife has convinced me to give up commercially processed meat and poultry after seeing how ungodly those animals are treated at the processors. I'm no tree hugger but I'll tell you what... I have to admit that it really bothered me.

Being a die hard carnivore I made her a deal... I'll eat only the meat I harvest myself. So I guess my favorite pastime is now going to be a bigger part of my way of life, although I may sneak in a cheese steak sammich now and again!

Last edited by brmfan; January 21, 2013 at 08:57 PM.
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Old January 21, 2013, 06:18 PM   #2
alex0535
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Do you have enough space to be able to raise any of your own livestock? Hunting season isn't all the time, at least it isn't here. If you raise animals you provide them the treatment they receive. The happier the animals the tastier the meat.

If you raise chickens you will have fresh eggs and fresh chicken. It doesn't take many chickens to have more fresh eggs than you know what to do with.

I have thought about trying to raise rabbits as well. They breed like rabbits, they grow fast and the meat is tasty. I looked into ways to try to provide them as close to a free range diet as possible.

Raising your own animals you will be more self sufficient and you know the animals lived in a humane manner and died in a humane manner. If you have a garden, all of the animal waste from the rabbits and chickens can be used to fertilize the dirt and you will have a better crop of whatever you plant.
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Old January 21, 2013, 06:39 PM   #3
warbirdlover
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I applaud you for doing what you feel right. The problem is it will have no affect whatsoever on changing the way those animals are treated. But I guess you'll feel better about it.
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Old January 21, 2013, 07:21 PM   #4
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I've got rabbit burgers, deer burger, stew meat and roasts in the freezer right now.

You haven't felt bad till you see a guy "rolling" a lame cow across the loading line with a forklift. Rule is if it crosses the line on it's own, it can go to slaughter. They get it going with the fork lift then they let them roll "on there own" across the line. I'm all for using your own humanly killed game, and raising your own food. Our pork comes from my buddy. His hogs live and eat like kings till their day comes. He's getting cattle next year, and my wife and I will start doing big gardens again to help feed our two family's, after we move out of town to our dream home out in the sticks this fall that is.

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Old January 21, 2013, 07:27 PM   #5
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I applaud you for doing what you feel right. The problem is it will have no affect whatsoever on changing the way those animals are treated. But I guess you'll feel better about it.
the same is true of how you vote.
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Old January 21, 2013, 07:46 PM   #6
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If you have a garden, all of the animal waste from the rabbits and chickens can be used to fertilize the dirt and you will have a better crop of whatever you plant.
Also, you can take all the vegetable waste (Carrot/beet/parsnip tops, potato peels, watermellon rinds, pea pods and all the fruits and veggies you dont' eat) and feed it to the chickens. Chickens will eat darn near anything (including mice!) ....
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Old January 21, 2013, 07:53 PM   #7
.284
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This might be a little off topic but, I get irritated by people who eat meat from a grocery store and feel like filling my freezer with venison is barbaric. If they only knew that hunters have much more respect for the game they use than the processing facilities do. Just my two cents.
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Old January 21, 2013, 07:57 PM   #8
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Life is never fair !!

The Bunny-Huggers are alway accusing us of being purposely cruel to animals. They are really missing the boat for all they have to do, is closely look at you next order of fried chicken and note all the broken limbs inside. You can acually see where the break bled during processing. .....

Be Safe !!!
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Old January 21, 2013, 08:52 PM   #9
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We'd been in the process of looking at new homes out in the county with at least 10-12 acres anyway, so raising chickens and having a large garden were somethings we'd already planned on.

As I said, I will always be a meat eater and I know our decision won't change anything. But we have been involved in animal rescue and dog fostering for years, and animal welfare in general is something that we take to heart. In fact animal abuse is at the top of my "oh hell no you better not push that button" list.

So maybe I will sleep better at night knowing I walked the walk. Plus it'll give me even more reason to get out in the woods. I never go turkey hunting despite having every opportunity, but now I'm already making plans!

Quote:
If they only knew that hunters have much more respect for the game they use than the processing facilities do. Just my two cents.
It's not just you .284 I did a consulting job at a large processing center years ago and couldn't even look at a chicken for 2 weeks!
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Old January 21, 2013, 08:52 PM   #10
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+1 on the chicken comments. Just got done slaughtering my first batch. Word of advice, though. Put the coop a looong distance from the house, or the things will drop manure all over your front porch and sidewalk.

Conversely, never had a bug problem around the house last year.
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Old January 21, 2013, 08:54 PM   #11
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When you said you like a quick and clean kill and then referred to making your Wife a deal ... I was worried at first !
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Old January 21, 2013, 08:55 PM   #12
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Hah! She can kick my butt up and down the sidewalk and can outshoot me so I watch myself!
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Old January 21, 2013, 09:06 PM   #13
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Just got done slaughtering my first batch. Word of advice, though. Put the coop a looong distance from the house, or the things will drop manure all over your front porch and sidewalk.
We fenced the front yard, and the garden. The chickens had the run of the place, otherwise.

Those Norman Rockwell white picket fences of yesteryear had a purpose .......
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Old January 21, 2013, 09:08 PM   #14
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I guess I'm not of the same make as you guys. I've been to slaughter houses and I've seen how its done. I know a few people who worked at them and two guys who are foremen (sorta) at the ones they work at. Frankly I can say I'm not ashamed of eating beef, pork, chicken or other meats from the grocery store.

There's stories of people who "roll" lame cows across "the line" but the three slaughter houses I've visited have done no such thing. Every animal that arrived there alive walked out of the trailer on their own 4 feet. They were all herded into the area to be slaughtered and each walked in their on their own 4 feet. I'd have to say that from my personal experience (which is just spending a day in one and a couple of days - not in a row - in the other two) and watching what was done out of sheer curiosity. I hadn't witnessed any such actions as what was mentioned.

I've also seen the actual kill - which is quite humane. The most widely used method (or so I was told) was the method I saw in all three slaughter houses - a steel piston is put to the forehead of the cow and it shoots out to strike the head meaning instant unconsciousness and death from trauma to the brain. The cattle feel no pain.

The only thing really that made me sickish was the constant stench of manure, raw guts and blood collecting in their garbage/sewage trenches from the entire day's slaughter.

Nothing made me swear off eating beef from the store. As for chicken - I've seen how they're raised (both for eggs and meat) and frankly I'm not appalled by any of that either. I'll gladly cook up chicken and eggs from the store too.

In the current society its darned near impossible to live entirely off the land unless you live on a large tract of land that is your private property which can handle the burden you'll put upon the resident animal population AND if you're inclined to poaching (which isn't a fault in my book if its for subsistence but your local DNR/Fish and Game won't look at it like that).
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Old January 21, 2013, 09:44 PM   #15
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Agree with Hansam

I was a student at the University of MO, College of Agriculture from 71-75. It was during that time period the "tree hugger" movement started.

They didn't want chickens raised in cages, hog confinement operations, or the use of commercial fertilizer or pesiticides. My Ag econ professor had the perfect solution for them to allow us to turn back the clock 100 years. All they (the tree huggers) had to do was: Determine which 1/2 of the world's population (at that time) would be allowed to starve to death.

Sorry guys, but nothing that commercial agriculture does keeps me from eating food from the grocery store.
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Old January 21, 2013, 10:23 PM   #16
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Frankly I can say I'm not ashamed of eating beef, pork, chicken or other meats from the grocery store.
I'm not either- I just think I'd like a bit more control over who is doing the meatpacking and how they do it. Many, if not most of the people working in the packing houses around here are illegal immigrants ...... I've seen the shylock practices at our local butcher shop (now closed, and the owner disapeared back to Mexico, leaving debts across the county!).....

I'll cut my own, when I can, thankee.
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Old January 21, 2013, 10:29 PM   #17
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All they (the tree huggers) had to do was: Determine which 1/2 of the world's population (at that time) would be allowed to starve to death.
Oh, they have all kinds of stupid ideas that would contribute to mass starvation- look up "The Buffalo Commons" idea, where they proposed the forcible removal of all the occupants of the High Plains (some of the best cattle producing country in the world, and a not insignificant part of the corn and wheat ground that feeds much of the world) to make a large nature preserve ......
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Old January 21, 2013, 10:40 PM   #18
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Glad to read there are still some soft hearted people around. Knowing that keeps us hard hearted one in check.
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Old January 21, 2013, 11:59 PM   #19
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I love to hunt but I doubt I could feed my family on hunting alone. I think I would have to raise cattle and chickens if I was going to do that.
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Old January 22, 2013, 12:21 AM   #20
brmfan
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Don't get me wrong... we're still going to eat seafood (which we do a lot anyway since we live close to the Gulf). I'm basically talking about pork, chicken, and beef.
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Old January 22, 2013, 10:16 AM   #21
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You can believe and do anything you want. It's what makes this country great. Personally I try not to get too religious when it comes to treatment of animals and I also question sources of things like this. It's not like the huggers are going to the best places and showing unedited clips. There are good people and bad people in all walks of life and farming is no different. But I can tell you I've been around small farms raising pigs, cattle, chickens and turkeys and been around large factory farms for those critters too (never a farmer myself). Livestock from one aren't any happier than livestock at the other. They're a resource, a very needed resource, and applying human emotions to resources is a bad idea.
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Old January 24, 2013, 09:00 AM   #22
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By filling my freezer with game I harvest along with livestock I raise I feel more self reliant. I also know exactly what my family is eating. Not all the slaughter houses are bad but enough so that I don't buy meat from the store. Not only because of the treatment of the animals but the hormones and anti-biotics that are pumped into commercial livestock. I try not to get into this debate with too many people. I just know I feel good about my families diet and way of life. +1 on raising chickens, fence the garden or they will eat the bugs and the vegetables!
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Old January 24, 2013, 06:29 PM   #23
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Were I in a position to raise my own livestock and live off butchering them along with hunting I would. I already grow my own vegetables (albeit I don't have enough land to produce enough to feed a family of 6 for the entire year so I still have to go to the grocery store) and I'm quite familiar with butchering animals (done rabbits, pigs, goats, cattle, chicken, duck and turkey along with game animals) so it wouldn't be a stretch for me.

The only problem is that I don't have the land and the funds necessary to start raising my own livestock - I'd want to raise some of each of the following, chicken, pigs, goats and chicken. That takes a lot of land that I don't have and it takes a lot of funds to start that I don't have.

So I go buy the majority of my meat and about 40% of my vegetables from the grocery store. I don't worry at all about how the animals were treated/killed before they reach the store because I believe that the majority of them are done in the way I've seen them done - which is humanely and cleanly.
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Old January 25, 2013, 02:56 AM   #24
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This is a topic I could spend hours (maybe days) discussing. I'll try to keep this short...

I very much prefer eating only animals that I know were healthy, and were slaughtered properly. For that reason, I avoid beef, turkey, and chicken; and try to minimize my pork intake. I'd be lying to everyone, including myself, if I said I don't eat commercial meat; but I do try to avoid it.

A few years back, my wife was asking why I hated commercially-raised animals so much. While explaining that the reasons depend on A) how it's raised, and B) how it's slaughtered, I showed her a few videos. Standard commercial 'chicken houses' and beef feed lots nearly made her sick, which I made worse with some data on the hormones, diseases, chemicals, and antibiotics they're loaded with. But, it was a video of mass compressive asphyxiation of pigs that pushed her over the edge.

Seeing a hydraulic wall crush 40 pigs at a time, before dumping them - half of them still alive - battered, bleeding, covered in feces and vomit, and (the live ones) screaming, onto a conveyor belt... that really got her attention. She didn't knowingly eat pork meat for at least a year.

Since then, my wife has not only NOT had a problem with the idea of sending a bullet through an animal's brain or heart, but she has become a staunch supporter of ethical hunters being some of the most humane killing machines.
She also doesn't complain when I go out of my way to track down a free-range chicken, or spend 3 hours calling around to find a local farm with grass-fed beef. (Or some well-treated suckling pig. )


If I could raise my own livestock, I would. My wife and I would LOVE to be able to raise our own Pronghorn, but that's not likely to ever happen.


And, just one last thing I have to say...
My biggest problem with beef is not the animal or the methods of slaughter. My problem with beef is the feed. Corn is evil, and cows should not be eating it. With a proper diet, up to 80% of disease in commercial beef would be gone.
(I'm sorry. I had to. I hate corn. It tastes great, but our agriculture and beef industries are completely screwed up because of Corn subsidization.)
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Old January 25, 2013, 09:35 AM   #25
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What the heck were you watching that had a hydralic wall crushing pigs????


As far as taking alotta ground to raise food, a couple acres will get you ALOT of food.
Our 70'x50' garden gives us an AMAZING amount of veggies. Especially in good dirt (which we dont have). Had to build a root cellar.

Unless you are raising the hay and grain for the animals, they dont need alotta room. Our goats and chickens share an area of about 80'x50' (though we're thinking of making it bigger). The 2 steers were in the corral until we butchered them. We dont have any, but a couple pigs wouldnt need anything bigger than 25'x25'.

We dont have any irrigating water so we trade work for hay. We border Dads 20 acres, so combined it is 35 acres. But, this is sagebrush, sandy desert and with no irrigation, it is nothing but space. We really have to water the heck out of the gardens in the summer. You would be AMAZED at how fast a 105* 20mph wind will dry stuff out. Just like a clothes dryer.
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