Breaking news: Obama Administration closes loophole and forbids slaughtering downer calves July 13, 2016 18 Comments SHARE Today, in yet another pro-animal rulemaking action, the Obama Administration made final a rule banning the slaughter of downer calves – an issue The HSUS put on the national radar screen with a pair of damning undercover investigations that threw back the curtain on the mistreatment of juvenile animals too sick or injured or weakened to walk to their own slaughter. The rule closes a loophole in a 2009 federal regulation that banned killing downed cattle for human consumption but did not include downer calves, leaving them vulnerable to abuse and suffering. The 2009 and now the 2016 rules go a long way toward addressing the abuse of these animals, but more work remains, perhaps with the next administration, to address the widespread abuse of downer pigs. The HSUS filed a legal petition after an undercover investigation at Bushway Packing, Inc., a veal calf slaughter plant in Vermont, found workers kicking, slapping, and shocking infant calves with electric prods. Another HSUS undercover investigation in 2014 at Catelli Bros., a veal calf slaughter facility in New Jersey, showed more abuse of downer calves. Workers were recorded trying to lift calves by their tails, dragging them with chains, and spraying them with water to force them to stand up so that they could be inspected and slaughtered.