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28 September 2016
My Hen Queenie:
A Conversation With United Poultry Concerns

Queenie's broken leg in a cast

“I got a text that battery hens were being retired. There were apparently thousands. They were going to be rendered for pet food.”
– Liz Klem to Karen Davis, September 23, 2016

When Liz Klem the director of Cross’d Paws Farm, in Pomona, New Jersey, wrote me about her rescued hen, Queenie, I was so touched by her video clip of Queenie and Queenie’s story that I wanted to share with others the gist of our conversation. So here it is.

Dear Karen, I was delighted to talk to you at the conference last month about my former battery hen, Queenie. However, on June 27, Queenie somehow broke her leg.

Karen: I’m very sorry. What happened?

Liz: Well, we got a new rescue horse that day and while I doubt Queenie got kicked, somehow her higher leg bone broke. I took her to my vet who x-rayed and set the break in a cast. Queenie could not use her leg at all with the cast on, but it was crucial for her healing. My vet took the cast off after 10 days as further x-rays showed the bone was healing and Queenie has been doing better ever since. I am so inspired by her spirit that I wanted to share her story with someone I knew would understand.

Karen: I do indeed! You say Queenie is a former battery-caged hen – how did you get her?

Liz: I got her from Helping Hearts Equine Rescue in Perrineville, NJ. She had been in a battery cage facility that was closing, and she was going to be shredded! Helping Hearts was able to save about 20 hens from that awful fate, and I took two. Sadly, one died after only 2 days with me, but Queenie said, “This is the life for me!” and adapted immediately.

Karen: It’s great that you have good veterinary care for Queenie. Can you add a little more?

Liz: Queenie got great care from my veterinary hospital, Atlantic Animal Health, in Galloway, NJ. Dr. Gordon Stull and Dr. Lori Nordt did the surgery and inserted a pin in her leg. They removed it after 10 days when the radiograph showed that the bone was knit. They were very impressed with Queenie’s spirit, her tenacity of life.

Karen: And how is Queenie now?

Liz: After the cast was off, she was confined to a stall for about 2 months and then I let her out for an hour a day, watching that no one bothered her. Then we did a few hours a day until she was able to be out all day unsupervised since last weekend. Her grip with that leg is getting stronger, but until she can roost comfortably, she is staying in the stall at night. Today is September 21st and here she is, not just walking, but running! She is so determined to live her life.


Queenie at Cross’d Paws Farm



Queenie standing on the kitchen counter

Read more about Queenie on her web page

UPC Postscript: Any hard evidence about live, adult hens being shredded by U.S. egg-producers would be appreciated. For some background, see:
Pet Food, Bird Shredding & Embryo Sexing: Behind the Scenes 7 September 2016.


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