Groundhog Day 2009
An Animal Rights Article from


Robert Cohen
February 2009

My list of favorite movies includes Groundhog Day.

If you have not seen it, take my advice and do so.

I'll readily admit to having seen the film at least 20 times, and will view it again this year if it's on TV.

At approximately 7:25 AM on every February 2, a groundhog will trek to Gobbler's Notch to make the official prediction that six more weeks of winter remain in 2009. Today's celebration will mark the 123rd consecutive year that Groundhog Day has been celebrated in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.

Come sunshine, rain, or snow, the groundhog's keeper has assured us that their little rodent will see some sort of shadow due to his enormously fattened bulk, even though it's cloudy and snowing lightly in Punxsutawney as this message is being posted at 4:45 AM.

The fix is in. They've been feeding him ice cream during the "off season.

This past year, American consumers have been presented with the dairy industry argument that consuming dairy products helps people to lose weight, which makes absolutely no sense, but makes for great press by those whose job it is to deceive America into consuming milk.

On average, groundhogs weigh a little over five pounds when they emerge from hibernation in the spring. After a summer of eating, September weights can soar to ten pounds. The largest wild (free and uncaged) groundhog weighed in at fourteen pounds!

The bigger news has nothing to do with the either. It's why Punxsutawney Phil has become the Holstein cow of groundhogs. He's the pig of litte furry hibernators. What has Phil been munching on all winter while observing his dairy-based weight loss program? Ice cream! The root of our groundhog's obesity ain't roots. It's dairy!

Bill Deeley, the local funeral home director who emcees Punxsutawney's much-publicized Groundhog Day Festival and sees to Phil's needs 365 days out of the year, had this to say about Phil's diet: "He's naturally a vegetarian. But he loves ice cream and strawberry sundaes."

Phil, the groundcow, weighs in at 15 pounds and measures 22 inches in length.

Could an overweight Phil be due to the powerful growth factors in milk and dairy products? Groundhogs should not be eating a diet of bovine growth hormones and high calorie-containing saturated animal fat. Neither should humans, for that matter.

So...eyewitnesses will see Phil spring from his burrow and report that he saw his own shadow. Winter continues for everybody. Easy on the ice cream, or you and Phil might look lousy in bathing suits next summer.

For more information about the dangers of dairy, visit

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