Farm Animal Welfare

The Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals works to ensure the humane treatment of animals.  Our compassion reaches beyond the animals we live with in our homes, to animals that live in the wild, in a laboratory, or are used for food.

The MSPCA believes that farm animals are creatures of intrinsic value, complexity and dignity. The MSPCA further believes that the billions of animals raised each year in the United States for food, clothing, and other products are entitled to live their lives free of unnecessary pain, suffering and stress, and to have a humane death. To learn more about the MSPCA’s position on the humane treatment of farm animals, read our statement of belief. The MSPCA also operates Nevins Farm, an Animal Care and Adoption Center, located in Methuen Massachusetts, which provides refuge for all types of farm animals.

Vote YES on 3!

The MSPCA supports the initiative petition entitled An Act to Prevent Cruelty to Farm Animals that will be on the ballot on November 8, 2016. We encourage Massachusetts residents to vote YES on 3.

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Learn More about Farm Animals

Hens & Battery Cages

Hens & Battery Cages

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Pigs & Gestation Crates

Pigs & Gestation Crates

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Calves & Veal Crates

Calves & Veal Crates

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Other Farm Animals

Other Farm Animals

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How You Can Help

How You Can Help

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A More Humane Diet

A More Humane Diet

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More About Factory Farming

More and more consumers are becoming aware and increasingly concerned with how farm animals are treated. Industrial type farm settings, commonly referred to as factory farms, have replaced traditional, more natural farm settings in order to produce the highest output at the lowest cost. While the MSPCA recognizes the need to find economic and efficient means of raising livestock, the Society opposes those practices–such as intensive confinement systems–which cause needless pain, suffering and stress to the animals involved.

“Factory farms” are characterized by the use of crates and cages that either totally isolate individual animals from others of their species or crowd many animals together in order to save space and increase handling efficiency. Factory farms are also characterized by the manipulation of diet in ways that interfere with the animal’s good health, handling animals in stressful or injurious ways, surgeries performed without appropriate use of anesthesia, surgeries performed on animals solely to prevent injuries resulting from confinement-induced stress, and selective breeding practices which produce characteristics that increase animal suffering.  Factory farm practices also use an alarming number of antibiotics in order to keep animals alive and producing under unhealthy, stressful conditions. The MSPCA believes that good animal husbandry should be based on humane stewardship of livestock.

The Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production, released a 2 1/2 year analysis-based report Putting Meat on the Table: Industrial Farm Animal Production in America that calls for major changes in the way factory farms produce milk, eggs and meat. Three of the Commission’s key recommendations are:

Read what The Washington Post and has to say about this important report.

The World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) “Eating our Future: The Environmental Impact of Industrial Animal Agriculture” report shows how factory farming not only causes the suffering of billions of animals, but is also a major contributor to climate change, scarcity of resources, and global problems such as poverty and disease. The report recommends a reduction in meat consumption and a move toward smaller-scale sustainable and humane food production methods.

Time Magazine published an article entitled Getting Real About the High Price of Cheap Food, which addresses human health, environmental issues, subsidies, concentrated animal feeding operations, the use of antibiotics on farm animals in intense confinement, and other problems with our current system of food production; it also suggests alternatives that are better for people, animals, and the environment.