04/12/03 Easter

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An unusual action of Animal Friends on the occasion of Easter holidays



In order to present the horrible truth about breeding and killing chickens and hens Animal Friends will organise a vivid action on Starcevic Square in Zagreb, in front of the entrance to Importanne Center. Three of our activists will be locked in a cage the size of one square meter, and by doing so, they will ask the public not to participate in this cruelty towards the chickens. Action will take place on Saturday, April 12, 2003, starting at 10 A.M.

The cage in which the activists will be staying, as well as the informative desk, will be set up in front of the entrance to Importanne Center on Starcevic Square in Zagreb. The goal of the action is to present inhuman conditions in which chickens and hens are bred for the purposes of meat and egg industries. At the moment of speaking, millions of egg-laying hens are locked up in confined cages just for the purposes of laying eggs.

They spend their whole lives cramped in cages living on a surface the size of A4 paper, and are not even able to spread their wings. All of them are previously de-beaked, meaning part of their beaks are sliced off with a red hot blade, because due to conditions they live in, they get frustrated and end up attacking one another. Male chickens end up as waste material, suffocated or, more commonly, crushed alive.

The cages are made of wire that cuts into their legs and plucks their feathers, because of which they have wounds, scabs and furuncles all over their bodies. Farmers ignore their physical and mental agony completely by keeping them under artificial lighting instead of the sunlight, up to 22 hours a day, so that they would eat more and therefore gain weight faster.

Moreover, they are constantly exposed to the stink of their own excrement, their cages never stand straight and they are known to suffer from a large number of medical conditions, such as permanent feet deformity, "egg-laying hens' fatigue" - a disease that also results in bone weakness, "seacoast syndrome" - results in watery eggwhites, "fear and hysteria syndrome" and "fat liver syndrome" that can be fatal because of the bleeding of liver.

Farmers tend to solve these problems with number of dangerous medicines that increase animal suffering and also endanger the health of humans. Also, egg-laying hens have to go through forced moulting in order to increase the period of laying eggs and the size of eggs. They have to suffer through all of these procedures until they reach the period in which their exhausted bodies are no more capable of laying eggs.


The EU has reached a decision that bans chicken breeding in cages that will start to be in effect on January 1, 2012, and from January 1, 2004 production and use of new cages will not be allowed. Knowing that Croatia is trying to become a part of the EU, it would be logical to expect our Government to reach a similar decision about cage-breeding. However, Croatia still loves to emphasise the size of its farms and all investments made in the cruel system of chicken breeding on farms and households.




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