Replace your Valentine with a cow this Valentine’s Day cos Feb 14 is now Cow Hugging Day

Amrutha Pagad
Amrutha PagadFeb 09, 2023 | 12:08

Replace your Valentine with a cow this Valentine’s Day cos Feb 14 is now Cow Hugging Day

Indian government wants people to hug cows on Valentine's day. GIF: DailyO

The Union Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying wants you to hug cows on February 14, and has taken this date - popularly known as Valentine's Day - to start Cow Hugging Day. We are not mooing around; there's actually a circular issued by the Ministry: 

Here's the circular: 


This is what the circular reads:

We all know that the Cow is the backbone of Indian culture and rural economy, sustains our life, represent cattle wealth and biodiversity. It is known as "Kamdhenu" and "Gaumata" because of its nourishing nature like mother, the giver of all providing riches to humanity.

Vedic traditions are almost on the verge of extinction due to the progress of west culture over time. The dazzle of western civilization has made our physical culture and heritage almost forgotten.

In view of the immense benefit of the cow, hugging with cow will bring, emotional richness hence will increase our individual & collective happiness.
Therefore, all the cow lovers may also celebrate the February 14 as Cow Hug day keeping in mind the importance of mother cow and make life happy and full of positive energy.

This issues with the approval of competent authority and on the direction of Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying.

What this practically means:

Photo: Shaurya Thapa
  • The Indian government wants people to hug cows on February 14 for its 'immense' benefits. 
  • Often, Right-Wing fringe elements turn anti-Romeo squads and vigilantes on February 14, terrorising couples hanging out in parks or other public places. We have seen couples married off on Valentine's Day in the past and what not.
  • While this current cow-hugging circular doesn't call on vigilantes; it does suggest 'cow lovers' hug cows to own their Indian culture instead of embracing their partners perpetuated by 'west' culture. 

Following the release of the circular, the memes have flooded social media platforms. 


Things to keep in mind when hugging a cow: Some of the memes actually make sense too. You should ensure safety if you are going to go hug a cow. 

  • Firstly, ensure you find a cow and not a bull.

  • Second, avoid standing at the back of the cow since sometimes the bovines tend to kick and it will be bad for you. The best way to approach a cow would be from the front or the sides. 

  • Leave an irritated cow alone. 

  • Do not tease the animals. Just because the government wants you to go hug cows, don't go around teasing and troubling the big mammals for your fun. Cow hugging should also be relaxing for the cow. 

Thoughts: Cow hugging is a stress-busting practice; it's not new and is adopted even in western countries. But if the government really wanted to promote the benefits of hugging cows, it could have done a better job at promoting the stress-busting practice rather than tying it up in Vedic culture to one-up the 'west' culture. Also, hugging your significant other can be good for your health. Hugging a cow, a dog, your partner, your parents, grandparents, children, etc are all good for health in their own places (consent is paramount). 


Also, genuine cow lovers reading this story, know that cows in India are often mistreated, starving, abandoned, and forced to eat trash. They need good homes and proper shelters. Their place is not on the roads eating garbage.

So, if you want to help cows (and not just yourself) try to contribute towards their welfare, with or without a hug. 

Last updated: February 09, 2023 | 12:30
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