What do vegetarians do with unproductive laying hens?

Gardener_in_Training

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 22, 2009
15
0
22
Corvallis, OR
I'm new to the forum and still deciding if I would like to try keeping chickens. If I do, I will keep a small number (around 3) in a suburban area, for the purposes of egg production.

One factor (of many) I must consider is what to do when my hens grow older and no longer produce many eggs. Both myself and my husband are vegetarian and are not interested in eating our chickens.

What do other vegetarians do? Do you keep the hens until they die of natural causes? If you keep unproductive hens around, do you bring in new, younger hens and keep a mixed-age flock so that you still get eggs?

I'm not meaning to start a philosophical discussion on vegetarianism and omnivorism; I am only interested in learning what people who do not eat chicken meat do with their older hens.
Thanks!
 

cybercat

Songster
12 Years
May 22, 2007
2,353
38
226
Greeneville, Tn
Basicly people sell there older chickens off. In your case to non vegetarians. There are those that just like to keep them as pets but that is few and far between.
 

Chicken03

Songster
10 Years
Mar 20, 2009
245
1
121
Western Pa
You can keep them around as pets until they die of old age. Or maybe you could sell them alive to somebody who wants to eat them?
 

Judy

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Feb 5, 2009
34,024
532
448
South Georgia
Around here it is not a problem to find someone who will take a hen for free or a little money, to butcher and eat. Depends on whether that would bother you, I guess.
 

luvmychicknkids

Canning Squirrel
11 Years
Mar 6, 2008
5,679
28
261
Floresville, Texas
I am not a vegetarian but my laying hens will never be food, for me or anyone else. Once they stop laying they will live out their last days as pets. Honestly, hens can produce a few eggs here and there most of their lives anyway and I feel they have given me so much I will give them their retirement.
 

Chihuahuamom

In the Brooder
11 Years
Oct 20, 2008
45
2
24
AMEN luvmychicknkids ! The answer to everything on here....cull em ,eat em, did anyone ever hear of just having them as pets???? I have dogs and cats that give me nothing in return except Love!
 
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Gardener_in_Training

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 22, 2009
15
0
22
Corvallis, OR
For folks who keep them around - do you periodically get young hens so you continue to get eggs? If so, do you introduce them to the older hens or house them separately?
 

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