If you happen to drive by a Russian farm and spot a bunch of dairy cows wearing VR glasses, no, they’re not playing. They’re watching serene pasture scenes that researchers hope will keep them calm so they produce more milk.
On a farm near Moscow, farmers are trying out new prototype VR glasses that have been altered to be worn comfortably by cows.
Wearing the glasses, the animals were shown a summer field simulation program — created specifically in “shades of the red and weaker green and blue tones” that cows can actually see — to determine if the pasture scene altered the cows’ moods, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Food of the Moscow Region.
Researchers noted during the first test run of cows watching the VR simulation that there was a decrease in anxiety and an increase in the overall good mood of the herd.
Even just calling cows by personalized names can encourage better milk production.
The impact on milk production by dairy cows wearing these prototype VR glasses will be detailed in a future comprehensive study.
Ministry of Agriculture and Food of the Moscow Region didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.