At the 🐮 Cow 🐄 Market in Colombia 🇨🇴

Visiting a fair where animals are sold, en masse, is not for the faint of heart. The first thing that assaults you is the smell of so many beasts in one place -- and cramped quarters at that -- the press of flesh mixing with the odor of mud and animal waste.


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I learned, for example, that to diagnose pregnancy or check for infection, farmers will reach deep into a cow's rectum (all the way up to their elbows!) to feel for the uterus, ovaries and stomach. It's quite a sight to behold and can make your stomach churn ---not least, because of how the poor cow is tied up and helpless, throughout this palpation.


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The value of the cows is determined based on their health and weight. Some cows are sold for milk -- such as, the black and white ones -- while others for their meat.


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The healthier and heavier a cow is, the more it will command. It's tough work for the farmers, who lead the cows from the trucks they are delivered in, through many pens where they are weighed, evaluated and inspected.


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To get an idea of this process, below is a video where you can see the cows being herded and, behind it all, the majestic mountains, wreathed in clouds.


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