Ryan Gosling may be taking a break from acting, but the 32-year-old certainly isn't slowing down his animal activism.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Wednesday released a letter penned by Gosling to to Jerry Kozak, the president and CEO of the National Milk Producers Federation, urging him to require farmers to phase out dehorning by breeding for polled, or naturally hornless, cattle.

"I was shocked to learn from my friends at PETA about a practice in the dairy industry called "dehorning," which involves painfully burning horn tissue or gouging cows' horns out of their heads, often without the use of any painkillers," writes Gosling. "I respectfully urge the National Milk Producers Federation to take the lead in stopping this barbaric practice by requiring farmers to phase out dehorning by breeding for polled, or naturally hornless, cattle."

As the actor points out in the letter, dehorning is no longer necessary thanks to breeding practices that have eliminated horns on calves. 

"As you know, there is a simple and humane alternative: breeding for polled cows," he continues. "The American Veterinary Medical Association, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and third-party animal welfare  auditing groups recognize the benefits of polled genetics for the dairy industry, so there is absolutely no reason—and no excuse—for the cruel, unnecessary practice of dehorning to continue. Please do the right thing and take action today."

Gosling last hooked up with PETA back in 2011 to urge the USDA to reconsider a plan to dispatch diseased chickens and turkeys using suffocating spray foam. 

"This method causes birds intense and prolonged suffering before they suffocate to death," he wrote. "If dogs and cats were killed in this way, the person committing these acts would be charged with cruelty to animals."

Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

Ryan Gosling wants cruel cattle dehorning stopped
Actor pens letter in partnership with PETA to urge the National Milk Producers Federation to phase out dehorning.