Save Chickens and Turkeys from Cruel Deaths

Caged Chickens

Target: Tom Vilsack, United States Secretary of Agriculture

Goal: Protect chickens and turkeys from inhumane slaughter

Ninety percent of all animals killed in slaughterhouses in the United States are chickens or turkeys. Yet these creatures are still not covered under the protections of the United States Humane Slaughter Act, which provides basic guards against the tremendous cruelty than can too easily accompany the killing process. These animals deserve–at the very least–to have their lives ended as painlessly as possible.

The Humane Slaughter Act, passed in 1958, lists a number of requirements for the slaughter process intended to minimize the suffering of the animal before it is killed. The central point is that the animal should be unconscious and unable to feel pain when it is actually slaughtered. This usually involves a sedative of some sort, such as a gas or electric current. The Humane Slaughter Act lists cattle, pigs, and sheep as animals covered by the requirements, but not chickens and turkeys, by far the most heavily factory-farmed animals.

A recent investigation by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) revealed the horrific slaughter process at a plant operated by Butterfield Foods Co. in Butterfield, Minnesota. A member of HSUS spent almost two months working undercover at the plant, taking videos that show “spent” hens, hens used for egg production that are no longer producing, at each stage of the slaughter process. All too often, the videos show hens that make it through all the stages–including electrocution, throat-slitting, and boiling–and are still visibly alive.

If these animals are going to be used for food production, we have a responsibility to ensure that they are not forced to endure such unspeakable suffering in the process. Sign the petition below and urge the Secretary of Agriculture to modify the Humane Slaughter Act to protect chickens and turkeys from this terrible fate.


Dear Secretary Vilsack,

Every year, more than nine billion chickens are killed for food in the United States. Before actually dying, many of these animals undergo appallingly inefficient and inhumane methods of slaughter. These processes unquestionably leave the animal in a state of tremendous suffering in the last moments of their lives.

Although legislation exists to guard against these horrific practices, the vast majority of animals killed in slaughterhouses are entirely unprotected by it. While the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958 outlines killing processes for numerous livestock animals, including cattle, pigs, and sheep, it makes absolutely no mention of chickens and turkeys.

These birds are living beings that feel pain as much as any other animal, and thus deserve the same protections. I am urging you to save these creatures from unnecessary torture and modify the Humane Slaughter Act to include poultry in its list of protected animals.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Vmenkov via Wikimedia Commons

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  1. Bina pannell says:

    Please God let karma be real.

  2. Rosemary Anderson says:

    This is a cruel obscenity. Chickens are abused in so many ways all over the world. I can not understand the backward vile mentallity of anyone who thinks its okay to abuse these poor creatures. Stop this cruelty now. These poor creatures feel pain misery and fear so in the very leasty be gentle and kill them humanly and painlessly. What harm can it do to show some kindbness and human compassion ? Or is it you just love cruelty and take pleasure from another creatures suffering if this is so you are scum and should have the same done to you

  3. The cruelty towards chickens and turkeys is sadistic, demented and twisted. How can anyone call themselves human and inflict such horrors on innocent birds? The subhumans involved are the worst of sociopaths! There is no excuse for torturing any animal, especially one so intelligent, gentle and affectionate. What has happened in these idiots lives to make them so horribly cruel? Our society needs to be rid of these vile souls.

  4. Vigdis T. Forsberg says:

    To kill more “humane”: If they really wanted to be “humane”, they wouldn’t be killing in the first place.

    They are billions and billions of tortured and slaughtered Animals every year, who dream of freedom to live their lives in peace. You can be strong for them all by reading Charles Pattersons book: “ETERNAL TREBLINKA – Our Treatment of Animals and the Holocaust”

    Reading this book means that you really suffers with the innocent tortured and slaughtered Animals.

    Or as Helmut Kaplan said: Our grandchildren will ask us one day: Where were you during the Holocaust of the animals? What did you do against these horrifying crimes? We won’t be able to offer the same excuse for the second time, that we didn’t know.

    Other Animals are not at all for us humans to kill. After all, humans are vegans (like pigs, horses, cows, deers). Look to your flat teeth for two seconds, and you will understand the truth of it. Just for the record: Carnivores (like the wolf, cat, dog, shark) have sharp teeth.

  5. Butterfield Foods again. And the lack of regular controls by officials no doubt?

  6. Please clean up your act!

  7. Cecily Colloby says:


  8. Think how these animals must suffer — 24/7 — they suffer so YOU can have your food product, AND no one even blinks an eye — if you must eat animal products BUY YOUR products FROM FARMS WHO TREAT THEIR ANIMALS PROPERLY FROM BIRTH ONWARD! e.g., google “HFAC “/ also, look for label, “CERTIFIED HUMANE Raised & Handled”

  9. traitement horrible pour les animaux ces hommes sont des barbares et non des humains il est sur qu’il n’y a pas de controle sévére d’associations pour la défense des animaux

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