STUDY: Seeing Images of Baby Animals Reduces People’s Appetite for Meat

According to a recent study from Lancaster University and University College London, images of baby animals reduce one’s desire to eat meat, particularly among women.

Science Daily reports that psychologists in the U.K. “exposed men and women to images of calves, baby ‘joey’ kangaroos, piglets, and lambs and tested whether this affected their desire for meat. A tactic often used by animal rights groups, showing baby animals can have a real impact on waking up the public to the inherent cruelty of meat.

We found that both men and women find baby farmed animals to be cute and vulnerable, and experience feelings of tenderness and warmth towards them. Feeling tenderness towards a baby animal appears to be an oppositional force on appetite for meat for many people, especially women.
Additionally, the researchers found that these emotions affect men and women differently. For instance, men experience much less reduction in their appetites for meat than women when they see images of baby animals. It’s suspected this is because women still tend to assume the role of caregiver.

In a follow-up study, people were asked to rate their appetites for meat when presented with an image of a calf, a cow, or no animal. The results clearly show that meat became less appetizing after people looked at the image of a calf, while there was hardly any appetite reduction for those who looked at the image of a cow or of no animal at all.

This study is further proof that when people are forced to see where their food comes from, they often choose not to support something that doesn’t align with their values. This is why it’s incredibly important to expose the cruelty behind the meat, dairy, and egg industries, especially considering all animals raised and killed for food are babies.

Cows, pigs, and chickens are just as smart and sensitive as the dogs and cats we adore at home. But from the moment they are born to the moment they are violently killed, animals at factory farms endure a nightmare of extreme confinement, brutal handling, and excruciating mutilations.

See for yourself.

The only way to protect farmed animals from needless suffering is to stop eating them. By choosing a compassionate vegan diet we can live our values.

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