A former cattle rancher has spoken out about how farmers feel 'under attack' due to animal rights activism.
Canadian farmer Mike Lanigan, who turned his meat-and-produce business into a vegetables-only farm and a non-profit animal sanctuary, has told local media outlet Canadian Broadcasting Corporation: "Right now, I think farmers feel under attack.
"There's a lot of really strong animal activism going on.… I didn't realize all of these nuances to running a sanctuary, to saving my cows.
"I didn't see all of this."
Lanigan had an epyphany last year, and realized that killing animals is 'hypocritical': "I just thought it was hypocritical to give so much love, and then you can shut the door at the end," he says of his animals.
The farmer went on to explain that after spending hours trying to get a premature baby calf to nurse, only to send him to slaughter, Lanigan made the connection.
He now houses 31 cows, three horses, three chickens, and one duck in his Uxbridge, Ontario animal shelter - with the help of donations and volunteers, support which Lanigan billed as 'incredible'.
But the response from his neighborhood hasn't been the same.
Lanigan said fellow farmers stopped waving when they passed by his farm - and he even receives the occasional snort or comment at the market.
He also mentioned that his own sons didn't understand his move at first, but they have since come around.
"You know when you have a really lousy week and you think, 'What am I doing this for?'" he adds.
"Then you go to the market and a lady comes up and says, 'Mike, you know that we pray for you at every meal?'
"That's happened about three different times."
You can find out more about the animal sanctuary and donatehere