One of the moo-st pressing issues farmers face in the winter is protecting their calves from frostbite.
Back in 2018 and 2019, a farmer and her aunt came up with the idea of protecting newborn calves from the winter frost by making “moo-muffs,” or earmuffs for cows.
In 2019, a photograph of a cow wearing the creation went viral, and news media picked up on the story. Holly Poad, owner of Triple P Farm in Lone Rock, Wisconsin, thought of the idea after losing her barn in a fire. She needed to find a way to protect newborn calves from frostbite, so she bought jackets and calf earmuffs for them. To save money, she asked her aunt — who owned an embroidery business — to stitch more of them. And thus, they created Moo Muffs.
According to Poad, the muffs are made of fleece and lined with nylon. In a 2020 interview, she added that calves “don't even act like they know that they're on. They're not like trying to rub their head on stuff or get them off. I put them on when they're, you know, within an hour old, so they really don't even pay any attention to them."
It’s easy to see why the Moo Muffs went so viral:
According to their website:
At Moo Muffs, our goal is to help the cattle producer protect their investment and maximize profits, all while keeping the cattle comfortable. Moo Muffs are able to help eliminate frostbite on baby calves’ ears, keeping the value on calves that would normally be docked at the sale barn.
The first pair of Moo Muffs were made in February 2018. After our family barn burned down in 2016, we had to come up with an innovative way to keep our calves comfortable in the winter months. And not long after, Moo Muffs were officially born!
Their creations became so popular that in October 2019 they began distributing in Japan. You can read more about Moo Muffs here.
Auteri, Steph. “A Farmer Invented ‘calf Earmuffs’ to Keep Newborn Calves Warm and the Photos Are Adorable.” Business Insider, https://www.businessinsider.com/farmer-invented-calf-earmuffs-to-keep-newborn-calves-warm-2019-7. Accessed 9 Nov. 2021.
Bultena, Kealey. “Farmers Use Custom Ear Muffs To Protect Calves From Cold.” Wisconsin Public Radio, 21 Jan. 2020, https://www.wpr.org/farmers-use-custom-ear-muffs-protect-calves-cold.
“Moo Muffs.” MooMuffs, https://www.moomuffs.com/. Accessed 9 Nov. 2021.
Pflugshaupt, Amy. “Local Farmer Develops ‘Calf Earmuffs’ to Protect Newborn Calves.” Https://Www.Nbc15.Com, https://www.nbc15.com/content/news/Local-farmer-develops-calf-earmuffs-to-protect-newborn-calves-and-breaks-the-internet-506136031.html. Accessed 9 Nov. 2021.