Dairy farmers in Russia are strapping modified VR headsets to cows in an effort to improve the quality of the milk they produce.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Food of the Moscow Region has reportedly launched an experiment to see whether the devices could be used to improve the animals’ moods.
The headsets simulate summer field scenery and use colours suited to the cows’ vision.
Initial results of the experiment have apparently been positive, with the cows showing decreased levels of anxiety and an overall improvement in mood.
It is not yet evident if this has enhanced the quality of the milk, but plans are supposedly underway to determine this.
The technology could help improve the mood of farm animals that are kept indoors for long periods during Russia’s harsh winter seasons.
That publication has an upcoming “VI International Agro-Industrial Dairy Forum” event, which could benefit from this type of publicity.
VR for chickens
This is not the first time that virtual reality technology has been proposed to attempt to improve the well-being of animals.
A professor at Iowa State University proposed using VR headsets on chickens to simulate a free-range environment.
This could mean that farmers would need less land to keep their poultry happy.
The idea, called Second Livestock, was considered to be more tongue-in-cheek than an actual proposition, and never came to fruition.