Happy cows yield more milk

The happier a cow is the more milk it producesThe happier a cow is the more milk it produces.

A team at Newcastle University’s School of Agriculture found if cattle are treated with a “more personal touch” their milk production can increase by up to 500 pints a year.

The study found farmers who named their cows gained a higher yield than the 54% that did not give their cattle names.

Dairy farmer Dennis Gibb, who co-owns Eachwick Red House Farm outside Newcastle agrees with the findings.

He told the BBC: “They aren’t just our livelihood, they’re part of the family. We love our cows here at Eachwick and every one of them has a name.

“Collectively we refer to them as ‘our ladies’ but we know every one of them and each one has her own personality.”

Dr Catherine Douglas, from Newcastle University said: “What our study shows is what many good, caring farmers have long since believed.

“Our data suggests that, on the whole, UK dairy farmers regard their cows as intelligent beings capable of experiencing a range of emotions.

“Placing more importance on knowing the individual animals and calling them by name can, at no extra cost to the farmer, also significantly increase milk production.”