There is nothing like chatting to your best friend after you haven’t spoken in a long time. You are able to go straight back to your normal way of interacting, sharing old stories and usually making fun of the other person. It appears the same is true for cows. A recent study has shown that cows also have best friends and hate when they are apart for too long.
Have you ever looked into a field and sworn that you saw two cows having a conversation? These animals that we so often assume are stupid appear so social and lively in reality. To date, this has just been conjecture by farmers and passers-by who like to believe that cows are having an in-depth conversation, but now there is some science to back it up.
A recent study measured the stress levels of cows when they were isolated, when they were with their best friend (a cow who appeared to be around a lot), and when they were with a random unknown cow.
The results were startling. Not only was the cow more stressed when on its own but the cow showed its greatest stress level while completely isolated. It showed lower stress levels when it was with a stranger cow and it showed further reduced stress levels when it was with a cow that it knew. This shows that cows not only recognize their buddies but are much happier when they get to be together. This makes perfect sense when you think about it, as cows and other livestock are herd animals. This means that they likely do have a herd mentality and a strong association with their herd.
While this result may be incredibly interesting you would be excused for thinking it doesn’t really matter, but it does. Farmers can use this information to produce better milk yields and healthier cows. Studies have shown that a cow that suffers less stress produces more milk. A happy cow leads to a happy farmer.
What are your thoughts on cows having best friends? Is this a Pixar movie in waiting or something to be investigated further. Do you think other animals have best friends too? We all know that a dog is man’s best friend but maybe there is space for a cow or two as well. Tell us your thoughts on this incredible new revelation.