From Nina Katrine Dahl-Klepsvik:
When I was a child I used to dream of having a big farm filled with animals who were only treated with kindness and never exploited or killed. I was told not to “personify” the non-human animals, that other animals, besides humans didn’t feel or think or have the same value as us, and I was told that my dream was an impossible one. This used to make me very confused and sad, because as a child I knew the adults in my life were “always right,” but at the same time, I’ve always connected deeply with non-human animals and felt very strongly that this particular information was very false.
Almost two years ago, I had my first experience with getting to know chickens close up, and I discovered, as I have discovered with so many other species before, that as living beings on this planet we are more alike than we are different. I discovered the honest and loving nature of chickens, how they bond with a human who treats them with kindness, how they are funny and cheeky and smart, they can be jealous, or generous, sometimes sneaky, and often fail to hide their true emotions to someone who is open to really see them. I got to experience how much love a hen or a rooster will give back if you give them love first, and I saw how sensitive and vulnerable they all are.
This made me think about all the chickens out there, in the industry, and sometimes even in people’s backyards, who are there only to be exploited–who are only treated with disregard and cruelty. All these vulnerable little souls, just like my beloved chickens, who never get to be loved, cared for, or protected the way they need, and who never get to act out all the natural needs of a hen, and from there my childhood dream reawakened.
I have three rescue chickens from before who have been with me since they hatched. One rooster named Emil, and two hens, Frida and Bella. I took them to prevent the previous “owner” from killing them. At that time I had no idea how to care for chickens and the learning curve was steep. I have never regretted my decision, though. These three really stole my heart.
As I learned more, I decided I wanted to rescue ex-battery chickens as well, and now I have eight beautiful girls from the egg-industry: Pernille, Viktoria, Emma, Julie, Hedda, Ariel, Martine, and Angelika came into my life the 5th of January, 2016. My biggest dream right now is that they all will live to see summer, and for the first time in their eighteen-month lives, be able to scratch around in the ground, forage for food, sunbathe, dust bathe, and truly enjoy being a hen the way they always should have.
Hen Haven Microsanctuary was the first recipient of a Hen Reproductive Healthcare Fund grant in February 2016! The grant funds went towards paying for implants for her eight rescued ex-battery hens.
You can contribute to Nina’s implant crowdfunding campaign as well: https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/c15yUe/ab/25Sav7.