New footage captured by a passerby of a B.C. egg farm and shared with Animal Justice shows agriculture personnel dangling bundles of panicked chickens upside down by one leg; throwing the chickens up to several feet into crates; slamming crates shut while the chickens’ heads, wings and other body parts protrude; and otherwise roughly and carelessly handling the helpless animals.
The chickens in the footage are egg-laying hens being sent to slaughter. They are inherently fragile animals, typically with brittle bones from constant egg laying, severe feather loss, and weak bodies. They’re fearful of humans. Yet, the industry considers it acceptable to toss these animals around like garbage. Government data shows it's not uncommon for egg-laying hens to die en route to slaughter, in no small part because they're handled so roughly prior to being loaded.
Expert research tells us that this kind of handling results in broken bones, dislocated joints, bruising, fear, stress, and other injuries. Yet, much of it is considered standard practice in the industry, which creates and enforces its own weak rules for how it treats animals.
The animal agriculture industry has proven itself incapable of self-regulation. The government needs to oversee and monitor farms, implement evidence-based animal protection laws, create transparency in the sector so the public can be informed consumers, and proactively prosecute legal violations in order to deter the most extreme cases of cruelty and neglect.