In March 2023, Happily Heifer After Sanctuary, in Queensland, Australia, successfully saved 120 battery hens from a grim fate and provided them with a new lease on life. Most of these hens, previously confined to cramped and inhumane conditions on caged egg farms, were able to thrive in a new safe and loving environment.

Following their rescue, each hen underwent a comprehensive health check, revealing the extent of the suffering they endured. Unfortunately, eight hens were found with broken wings, one had a severe eye infection, and three suffered from severe lameness. These hens were promptly admitted to the sanctuary’s hen hospital, where they received specialized treatment for their conditions.

As of the 25th March 2023, 89 hens had already been adopted into forever homes. Eleven hens were still awaiting pickup by their soon-to-be adoptive families, eagerly anticipating their own happily ever afters. On 18th April, the sanctuary posted this on their Instagram: “During our March rescue, we saved 120 hens. 12 of those hens did not pass our health check to be adopted out into forever homes straight away… what does that mean for the hens?? Any hens that do not pass the health check come back to the sanctuary and are placed in our ‘hen hospital’. This time around…8 hens had severely broken wings, 5 hens suffered from severe lameness, and 1 hen had an infected eye cyst. After weeks of treatment/rehabilitation, and thousands of dollars in vet bills, the girls are doing so well and nearly all ready for homes! We have 6 hens who are nearly recovered from wing amputation surgery, and 5 hens who are nearly recovered from leg injuries.”

Unfortunately, not all the hens made it in the end. On 25th May, the sanctuary reported that Cinnamon had passed away. She had a shattered left wing that necessitated amputation surgery. Despite a successful recovery and a newfound love for life, Cinnamon’s health began to decline. After further veterinary examination, it was discovered that she had three large tumours in her abdomen. 

However, there had been other good news. On 26th May, the sanctuary wrote, “Sammy was rescued from a battery cage during our March chicken run. She had a huge cyst inside of her right eye, which required surgery to be removed. Two months later and this beautiful girl can finally see and experience life pain free! We have been able to save over 500 hens from caged egg farms, all because of the support of our Chicken Champions!”

“Originally from Catalonia, but resident in the UK for several decades, Jordi is a vegan zoologist and author, who has been involved in different aspects of animal protection for many years. In addition to scientific research, he has worked mostly as an undercover investigator, animal welfare consultant, and animal protection campaigner. He has been an ethical vegan since 2002, and in 2020 he secured the legal protection of all ethical vegans in Great Britain from discrimination in a landmark employment tribunal case that was discussed all over the world. He is also the author of the book, ‘Ethical Vegan: a personal and political journey to change the world’.