That's a phrase I saw in a book about chicken raising. The author states that if you don't cull your layers when they stop laying, you'll be running a "chicken retirement home." My plan (if I actually do decide to raise chickens) is to get 2 or 3 hens that will hopefully lay eggs. I realize in a few years they will stop laying, but I'm not sure I'll be able to get rid of them. I'm not a vegetarian, but I don't know if I will see them as pets. My husband doesn't think I'll ever be able to get rid of them once they come in, because I'll get too attached. I've had animals all of life, but as pets, never as livestock. Do most of you cull the old hens, or do you end up keeping them into their old age? Thanks! Sorry for all of the questions, but I'm still trying to decide.