How Do You Feel About the Shooting of the Pregnant Cow at the California State Fair?

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Gold DRE #00697006

For me, it was pretty horrific to read about the pregnant cow who was shot Tuesday for freaking out at the California State Fair. So, I was a little relieved when I read this morning's paper that animal advocates showed up yesterday at the Fair to voice their opposition.  It's good to know that people care and are willing to protest. Because the guys taking care of the cows were obviously unprepared to handle an emergency situation. They didn't think that far ahead or that cow and her baby would not be dead.

The police did what police are trained to do. Shoot to protect the public. Can't really blame them. But I can blame the people who were responsible for the health and safety of the pregnant cows. And the people who decided that the "miracle of birth" belongs on exhibition at the State Fair in Sacramento. When I was a kid, we didn't truck off to the Minnesota State Fair to watch calves being born. Nope, they stuffed our first-grade class on a bus and took us out to the country. I eagerly jumped off the bus, took a good strong whiff of the country air and vomited my guts into the dirt.

They put me back on the bus and made me sit there by myself while all the other kids got to go see the cows. When my classmates returned to the bus, one of them was kind enough to bring me a souvenir of the class trip: a small plastic cow. I didn't want a stinkin' plastic cow. I wanted to touch and look at real cows. I was very disappointed.

My mother, in an effort to show me where meat comes from, hauled me and my siblings off to a meat packing plant in Johnsville, Minnesota. We watched cow and pig bodies hung upside down from a conveyor belt move slowly past a glass window. They didn't much resemble cows or pigs. They certainly didn't look anything like the meat products in the refrigerated display cases at the store.

So, to this day I eat meat. I'm not a vegetarian. Although, many of my close friends are vegetarians and vegans. But I can tell you this, if I had to personally slaughter an animal for food, no question about it -- I'd never eat meat again. Still, it saddens me greatly to think about the dead cow and her baby. I hope precautions are put into place so this horrible incident never happens again, even if it means discontinuing some of the miracle-of-birth exhibits at the State Fair.

You can make contributions to the Humane Society of the United States, if you like.

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elizabeth weintraub



Weintraub and Wallace Realtors



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Elizabeth Weintraub is co-partner of Weintraub & Wallace Team of Top Producing Realtors, an author, home buying expert at The Balance, a Land Park resident, and a veteran real estate agent who specializes in older, classic homes in Land Park, Curtis Park, Midtown, Carmichael and East Sacramento, as well as tract homes in Elk Grove, Natomas, Roseville and Lincoln. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759. Put our combined 80 years of real estate experience to work for you. Broker-Associate at RE/MAX Gold. DRE License # 00697006.

Photo: Unless otherwise noted in this blog, the photo is copyrighted by Big Stock Photo and used with permission.The views expressed herein are Weintraub's personal views and do not reflect the views of RE/MAX Gold. Disclaimer: If this post contains a listing, information is deemed reliable as of the date it was written. After that date, the listing may be sold, listed by another brokerage, canceled, pending or taken temporarily off the market, and the price could change without notice; it could blow up, explode or vanish. To find out the present status of any listing, please go to


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Robert Slick
Beach and River Homes - Georgetown, SC

Animals prefer to give birth in familiar surroundings. You can make a place for a dog or cat to give birth and then find that they shredded the couch or easy chair overnight because that's where they decided was a good spot. The cow had no place to go.

Hormones run high during pregnancy. Just a homeowner tip: don't let pregnant women pick paint colors. And definitley don't let them paint and breathe those fumes, not good for them or the baby.

Jul 29, 2010 03:57 AM #1
William Queen
William D. Queen, Real Estate Broker, Richmond, Virginia - West End, VA

Elizabeth, although I do not share your feelings on this issue I felt empathy for you as I read your post.  I did read the news article you linked within your post. My thoughts are to the opposing benefits and costs of such events (be they at state fairs or otherwise). The birthing of animals are natural events and very much a part of reality. I think educating those of us animals who are capable of being educated is good. However there are always the risks of errors and mishaps. Those who would ban event A because of the possibility of mishap B must either be totally ignorant of the benefits of event A or judge that any occurrence of mishap B is not worth the benefits of event A. Of course this thought assumes the ability & willingness to think.


Jul 29, 2010 04:36 AM #2
J. Philip Faranda
J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY - Briarcliff Manor, NY

Rib eye, medium rare, creamed spinach and garlic mashed potatoes. A glass of montepulciano. Key lime pie, cappuccino, and try not to think about the pre kitchen events. 

Jul 29, 2010 04:43 AM #3
Mike Saunders
Lanier Partners - Athens, GA

Elizabeth - this dind't make the news here. I do not know what the environment was that the birthing was to take place in, but, having been to the California State Fair multiple times (I lived in Benicia for years) I don't recall any area that really would be conducive to or suitable for a maternity wing.

Do you still have the same reaction when you smell the fresh country air around the stockyards along I-5 near Coalinga?


Jul 29, 2010 04:44 AM #4
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

I don't get that people don't understand why this is cruel.  You think animals don't have feelings?  And in this day and age of television, internet, etc. why can't we just have one guy with a camera film the miracle of birth and share with the world.  Seems much more humane to me.

Jul 29, 2010 05:01 AM #5
Janet Sebile
Coldwell Banker Apex, Realtors - Rowlett, TX

It's not about the feelings of animals.  It's about our responsiblity to them and how we treat them even though they are our food.  It speaks about how we will treat each other.  There is nothing "natural" about the state fair.

Jul 29, 2010 06:21 AM #6
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

What asses to take that cow to the state fair to give birth.  Asses.  I've seen calves born, in fact helped pull one out, but you know at the barn, where the cows lived.  My granddaddy had a farm.  So I've eaten a cow and pig that I'd feed the weekend before.  But I can tell you this, even back in the 60s and 70s my Granddaddy treated his animals humanely.  But it did smell like a farm down near the barn.

Jul 29, 2010 06:22 AM #7
Lori Kim Polk
Premiere Home Staging : Home Staging Services - Roseville, CA
Home Stager - Roseville, Sacramento

I will address the shooting and say that the Vet who gave the OK to shoot the cow is ignorant and should be fired from his position at the fair. Having been involved with animal rescue for 15 years in many different situations, there were many other ways to handle this situation. But they took the easy way out after chasing her everywhere with a truck, tiring her out, and then shooting her. Several animal groups were there yesterday... it is not over.

Jul 29, 2010 06:23 AM #8
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

Elizabeth - When I heard that news blasting away on my television set, I immediately walked away.  I did not want to see the accompanying video.  I am having a hard time accepting that they couldn't have handled that situation differently.  I was at the State Fair last week.  A lot of folks out near the live stock barns are ranchers.  They come there and literally bunk down with their animals.  I am certain some could have managed to corral up that cow.   That's there business!  The whole thing was handled really badly in my opinion.

Jul 29, 2010 12:54 PM #9
Robert Machado
HomePointe Property Management, CRMC - Sacramento, CA
CPM MPM - Property Manager and Property Management

I think it is just an unfortunate event that got out of control.  Yes, the cow could have been left at the home barn to give birth.  But, the purpose of the state fair is to show people who would otherwise not see these animals a peek into their existence. The animal lovers, if they had their way, would ban us from eating any animals because killing them is inhumane.

Bottom line is that the animal was not being tortured and I am sure many births have taken place in such surroundings over the years.  We don't stop driving cars because horrible devastating accidents occur.  So, lets give the benefit of the doubt to the fair staff.  

We humans eat meat and use animals for both work, food, companionship, sports, and more.  Just don't torture them while they are alive.

Jul 29, 2010 06:18 PM #10
Debbie Baldes
Executive Properties - Citrus Heights, CA

Geez, when you chase any animal with a SUV what do you expect it to do. I think a bucket of grain would have done the trick! People need to use some more common sense! It wasn't a loose gorilla for heaven's sake!

Jul 29, 2010 07:40 PM #11
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
Prado Real Estate South - St. George, UT
So Utah Residential, Referral & Relocation REALTOR

Elizabeth, To have been at the Fair and be a witness that would have horrified me! It's obvious those in charge reacted badly but the cow didn't belong there as another just isn't natural! For some, this type of behavior is 'business as usual!" A shame really...

Jul 30, 2010 03:57 AM #12
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

Hi Elizabeth, I can't imagine this and didn't see the news.  How horrific it all sounds. So while that is about all I can say about the event at the fair, I have to agree with you: If I had to do the killing of the meat, I would have to become a vegetarian too.  Just thinking about it, makes me want to :-)

Jul 31, 2010 05:41 AM #13
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

I read yesterday that the Sacramento SPCA received a $1,200 check from the California State Fair as a donation to its Doggy Dash, and after this incident, the SSPCA sent the check to the Humane Society.

Aug 01, 2010 02:07 AM #14
Susan Neal
RE/MAX Gold, Fair Oaks - Fair Oaks, CA
Fair Oaks CA & Sacramento Area Real Estate Broker

Elizabeth, when I first heard this described, they spoke of an angry cow who "clearly hated people" and "was on the attack", but when I saw the video taken by a fair worker, I saw a nervous cow, looking for a way out and away from the police car that was chasing her. That car was driving just a few feet behind her as she trotted along.  If someone was chasing me with a car, I would do more than trot away. I'd be racing full blast and likely even crashing into things.

She was simply afraid, and someone familiar with animals should have been able to get the police to back off while they calmed her down.  She was pregnant and scared.  It breaks my heart that this was the reason she was killed.

Aug 03, 2010 11:42 AM #15
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