five legged cow (india)

five legged cow (india), 5 legged cow, baby cow, calf, holy cow, legs, offerings, painted, people, polymelia, sai baba, street, varanasi

This calf has an extra leg attached to the top of her neck.­ This is a birth defect called Polymelia, where conjoint twins starts developing but one twin degenerated completely except for one or more limbs, which end up attached to the other twin.­

With cows, the one or two extra limbs are often attached to the top of the cow's neck.­ This extra legs are shrunken, deformed and non-functional, and they get strange long nails (since the nails on normal cow legs get worn by walking).­

In India, when a calf is born with extra leg or two, this is like winning the jackpot: those 5 legged and 6 legged cows are seen are very holy, and the owner will parade them around and receive donations from Hindu devotees.­

These two calves (one with 5 legs, and the other one with 6 legs) were transported around the city in a specially designed motor rickshaw, covered with images of the famous "Sai Baba" (not sure why).­

For more info about Polymelia, go to en.­wikipedia.­org/­wiki/­Polymelia.

Photo taken in Varanasi - also known as Benares (India).­

For more info about Varanasi, go to en.­wikipedia.­org/­wiki/­Varanasi.

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Varanasi - Benares Cows India 2013
Dashaswmedh Road, Bangali Tola, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh 221001, India