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Do you let your children watch you butcher a chicken? - Page 2

post #11 of 81

I can remember being the "chicken chaser" when one of the headless or floppy neck birds took off to far and I swore I would never do that again or traumatize my kids that way.
That being said, I use a killing cone and there is NO chasing involved. My kids (19DD and 13DD) refuse to help with it but the 13DD did sit outside with us and watched some and did our running for drinks, towels, spraying us with bug spray(stupid buffalo gnats), ect. I wont force them to help or even watch if they don't want to. So if they want to watch or help I say let them until they(they- being the kids) are done then don't force the issue.
If you make a big deal out of it, so will they. If you are matter of fact about it and just say what is what, then they will as well.

JMO  LOL  pop

Grrrrr!!!!
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Grrrrr!!!!
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post #12 of 81

I think that people who eat meat should understand where their food comes from and show respect for the lives that were taken for their sustenance, and that means having an awareness of the fact of killing.  I'm sure that most children in modern society have no idea that hamburger, for instance, is cut from the flesh of a cow that goes "moo" or that chicken comes from a bird that goes "cockadoodle doo". 

That being said, my grandparents were farmers and while I'm sure they never meant to be cruel, they were definitely hardened by the hardness of the life they lived and would not tolerate upset over the killing of animals.  Because I cried when they made me watch the slaughter of a cow I thought of as a friend, I was made to sit on a bale of hay (as punishment) and watch for ages as my grandfather slaughtered chickens.  It's a horror I will never forget, the sight of my grandfather lobbing off head after head, and the chickens flopping around the yard, some even running around headless, and I remember the severed heads with their rolling eyes and gaping mouths.

I was a vegetarian for many years, because I had such a stark awareness of the cost (in life) of meat, and because I could not get those gruesome pictures out of my head. 

But back to your question:  You know your children best.  Wait until it feels right and you feel a strong sense of peace about it.

post #13 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katydid2011 

I think that people who eat meat should understand where their food comes from and show respect for the lives that were taken for their sustenance, and that means having an awareness of the fact of killing.  I'm sure that most children in modern society have no idea that hamburger, for instance, is cut from the flesh of a cow that goes "moo" or that chicken comes from a bird that goes "cockadoodle doo"

That being said, my grandparents were farmers and while I'm sure they never meant to be cruel, they were definitely hardened by the hardness of the life they lived and would not tolerate upset over the killing of animals.  Because I cried when they made me watch the slaughter of a cow I thought of as a friend, I was made to sit on a bale of hay (as punishment) and watch for ages as my grandfather slaughtered chickens.  It's a horror I will never forget, the sight of my grandfather lobbing off head after head, and the chickens flopping around the yard, some even running around headless, and I remember the severed heads with their rolling eyes and gaping mouths.

I was a vegetarian for many years, because I had such a stark awareness of the cost (in life) of meat, and because I could not get those gruesome pictures out of my head. 

But back to your question:  You know your children best.  Wait until it feels right and you feel a strong sense of peace about it.


Im pretty sure that it is the exact opposite.  But doesn't mean they know which part it came from.

post #14 of 81

When I processed mine last weekend, my oldest (6) didn't come outside until they had been killed and their heads removed. She was more curious than anything. She wanted to knoe what chickens had been killed, had to go look at their heads to see which ones. Then she hung around watching, asking questions. She likes to eat chicken, and understands where it comes from. She also knows some of the chickens are her pets, and those will stay pets. She is constantly asking questions about her food since we've got the chickens, like what animal did it come from, and what part of the animal it was.(try answering that about a hot dog lol) No reservations about eating any of it, and I think it's good to know where your food comes from and how it gets there. I remember watching my grandparents do a batch of about a hundred meaties when I was her age. I was horrified they were dying, and the smell really got to me. On the other hand, I thought it was kind of funny watching them flapping around headless. hu And it was fascinating watching my grandma clean them, they went from being headless chickens to something I was used to seeing come from the store in about 60 seconds flat.

Seramas, call ducks, mandarin ducks. Pics on my fb farm page www.facebook.com/ittybittybantiebarn

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Seramas, call ducks, mandarin ducks. Pics on my fb farm page www.facebook.com/ittybittybantiebarn

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post #15 of 81

I did this yesterday with my 4 Cornish cross. I had never done it by myself (used to help grandparents when I was little) and wasn't sure I could do the killing, but I wanted to try. I used a 5-gallon bucket, hung on a post, with a hole cut in the bottom. My children all watched (girls, 6 & 4, boy, 2 1/2). They knew these birds were for our freezer when we got them. They also didn't have names. They watched for awhile, helped pluck a bit, and ran off to ride their bikes-checking back frequently to see how I was doing with them! I really believe the younger they are, the easier it will be on them.

Heather,wife of 1 and Mom of 5
1 Golden Retriever, 6 cats, MF d'Uccles, Silkies, Cream Legbars, Black Bresse, MF Leghorns, Snowflake Bobwhite quail, Sebastapol geese, and Silver Appleyard ducks.

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Heather,wife of 1 and Mom of 5
1 Golden Retriever, 6 cats, MF d'Uccles, Silkies, Cream Legbars, Black Bresse, MF Leghorns, Snowflake Bobwhite quail, Sebastapol geese, and Silver Appleyard ducks.

Cream Legbar Club!

My swap page!

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post #16 of 81

my  girls started helping last year when they were 4 and 6. they are 5 and 7 now, this year they will to a bit more, my 7 year old  wants to pluck this year !  they get excited when we have one of their chickens for dinner, bragging that the helped lol even tho last year they just helped put the processed chickens in bags  and the  feet,heads, feathers and innards in the garbage.

i think its very important that children learn where their food comes from.  my girls knew as soon as they could understand that beef comes from the cute little calves we raise from bottles, they know that we eat the slimy fish we catch. they know we hunt regular.

make sure you explain what is going to happen, and watch their reactions, tell them that its stinky, and make sure you send them in the house if they get too upset while watching. take it slow when they watch, it helps to explain every step smile

Its Coming and NO ONE CAN STOP IT! its christmas! LOL we have rope halter christmas tree ornaments for sale!  and rope halter earrings, rope halters any size! check out our ad in the classifieds :) check out our fan page on face book!  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sassy-Sisters-Halters-And-More/309083922436520

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Its Coming and NO ONE CAN STOP IT! its christmas! LOL we have rope halter christmas tree ornaments for sale!  and rope halter earrings, rope halters any size! check out our ad in the classifieds :) check out our fan page on face book!  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sassy-Sisters-Halters-And-More/309083922436520

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post #17 of 81

Darn tootin' my kids would watch me kill chickens.  My daughter who is 18 now along with my nieces and nephews have sat with me on deer stands since they were as young as 5 years old.  They have been in on gutting, cleaning and cutting up meat with me and their dads all these years and they can do it just as good.  I've got lots of health problems now, and it has been a great blessing to be able to call them up (they are teens now) and have them go gut the deer, bring it out and process it for me since I can't do it all by myself anymore.  As a matter of fact, my daughter killed her first deer when she was 10 years old.  Now if she really had not wanted to kill a deer I would not have made her do it, and actually she never did kill another one.  But she knows how to work them up, and if you can work up a deer then you can work up a cow, hog, or other stuff.  Besides, with all the blood and gore on TV with human heads cut off on CSI, Criminal Minds, and all those other shows kids watch these days, I don't think there is too much they couldn't stomach if they had to.

Some people use the availability of getting meat already processed as an excuse to put down those who kill (omg!  I said KILL!!!!) animals for eating.  Not saying anyone here does that.  Heck, you all know as well as I do how lots of people think that killing your own animals is from a time in the past when humans were not as "civilized" as they are now.  HA!  But I am thankful that my dad, uncles and other old timers had me along for killing and cleaning of animals whether it was rabbits, hogs or chickens.  It would be awful not to know how to do those things!  People who can are head and shoulders above those who can't whether they just never been around it or just don't want to.  I don't care what anyone believes, somewhere along the line things are going to get bad.  Might be next week, might not be for a hundred years, but history bears out that everything doesn't go hunky dory for everybody for all time.  Those who know how to do their own killing and butchering and keep it passed down to the next generation are the ones who will make it through those times.

Now, I know I sound like a mean old grouch, and my wife actually says I am, but Welasharon, I do sympathize with what you went through!  Good grief, that would have blown my mind too as a kid.  I'm all for TEACHING and SHOWING kids how to do stuff, but that wasn't too good of an example.  That might have made me unlikely to be around that stuff also.  But if you ever need to do it, at least you know how to, and more importantly--you know how NOT to do it.   

You know, I can remember the first time I ever helped clean an animal.  My dad and granddad had went hunting and killed some rabbits.  Granddad had them hanging up by their back legs in his basement.  He skinned one out and then told me to do another one.  I remember how easily that skin tore loose and came off that rabbit, and how the body gleamed in the light.  I remember putting my hand on the thigh and feeling the sticky warmth and the smell of the flesh.  Then Granddad showed me how to gut it, wash it, and cut it up for frying.  Now I'm not going to lie about it, I remember the first thing I felt when they told me I was going to help: DREAD!  But then I saw it wasn't as bad as I feared.  And I felt like I'd grown up some by being included too.

So, if you know how to do those things, heck even if you are just learning yourself, I say yes to including your kids.  It might not be all that pleasant to them the first time, but it gets easier after that, and next thing you know it is as normal as cutting grass.  Do everything in the most humane way possible and everyone can be proud of the job they did.  smile

Speckled Sussex.  I have a link on my homepage to some pictures of them.
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Speckled Sussex.  I have a link on my homepage to some pictures of them.
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post #18 of 81

Let them watch if they want to, but you should also talk them through it. If at any point they become uncomfortable, let them leave and then tell you why they feel that way. I think that part is also important in this process, especially with such a touchy issue. My parents have butchered all of the chickens we kept when I was a kid. They didn't really think of them as "pets," and that's probably because their childhoods were so much more different from mine. My dad grew up on a farm, with lots of free ranging chickens, and he had to learn how to butcher chickens at a young age. At least your kids are interested; some kids don't even know that a French fry comes from a potato.

post #19 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChicksterJo 

Let them watch if they want to, but you should also talk them through it. If at any point they become uncomfortable, let them leave and then tell you why they feel that way. I think that part is also important in this process, especially with such a touchy issue. My parents have butchered all of the chickens we kept when I was a kid. They didn't really think of them as "pets," and that's probably because their childhoods were so much more different from mine. My dad grew up on a farm, with lots of free ranging chickens, and he had to learn how to butcher chickens at a young age. At least your kids are interested; some kids don't even know that a French fry comes from a potato.


Isn't that the truth! I can't speak for the age of the OP's children but what I did since this was our first year was explain to the kids about it.My DD was against it at first because she thought it was cruel.So I educated her with some videos on   slaughterhouses...yes,she cried...but now she HELPS butcher and knows how cruel the ones from the store are treated.My DS who is her twin...agrees with butchering but is not "ready" to see it.Both ways are fine...and neither was pushed to do anything they didn't want to.
I think what bothered my DD more was watching those cruel people treat those chickens like they did...she just couldn't understand WHY?....I had to tell her...I didn't either.

1 Weim,1 Pomeranian, 2 Cats,2 fish tanks, flock of 30(or so ) BLRW chickens,flock of Banties(Cochins,Showgirls,Greylegs and Silkies), Flock of Ancona Ducks (B&W,Lav & W),Flock of Mallards (Blue Fawn and Restricteds) 6 Muscovies, 3 Narragansett Turkeys,2 Geese(Toulouse), 2 Budgies,2 zebra finch, 2 Cockatiels.... and oh yeah, 5 great kids( 2 have flown the coop) and an enabling hubby   

 

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1 Weim,1 Pomeranian, 2 Cats,2 fish tanks, flock of 30(or so ) BLRW chickens,flock of Banties(Cochins,Showgirls,Greylegs and Silkies), Flock of Ancona Ducks (B&W,Lav & W),Flock of Mallards (Blue Fawn and Restricteds) 6 Muscovies, 3 Narragansett Turkeys,2 Geese(Toulouse), 2 Budgies,2 zebra finch, 2 Cockatiels.... and oh yeah, 5 great kids( 2 have flown the coop) and an enabling hubby   

 

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post #20 of 81

I would say it depends on the children.  If they are comfortable with it and asking to help, I would let them.  I would explain ahead of time what to expect, and how to humanely dispatch the birds as others have said.  If they are young, it might help to have someone else there to keep them busy if they get uncomfortable and want to go elsewhere.  It is great that they are interested, too.  Kids are more likely to eat veggies and other healthy foods if they have a part in raising and preparing the food.  It is also a great life skill to have.

Wife to Krunchy, momma to DD (5) and a little baby boy, one black mini-Rex rabbit , a black silkie, and a 'bator full of eggs.   You can read about our crazy life at my blog, That's Life.

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Wife to Krunchy, momma to DD (5) and a little baby boy, one black mini-Rex rabbit , a black silkie, and a 'bator full of eggs.   You can read about our crazy life at my blog, That's Life.

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