Nearly 50,000 Hens Abandoned at Farm

An anonymous tip lead authorities to the discovery of almost 50,000 hens who were left for dead at a Stanislaus County farm rented by A&L Poultry in California.

Officials estimated that they were left without food for more than two weeks. About a third of the hens had already died of starvation when the Stanislaus Animal Services Agency arrived and more had to be euthanized because they were in such bad shape.

A&L Poultry’s owner, Andy Keung Cheung, reportedly ran out of money to feed them, and issued a statement to FOX40:

A&L Poultry has been in the process of arranging the shut down of its egg production operations utilizing the industry’s business practices and standards. An attempt to arrange for delivery of the chickens to a third party in order to avoid the usual business practice of euthanizing the chickens resulted in an unacceptable situation A&L Poultry did not intend, and profoundly regrets.

A few thousand hens who were fortunate enough to have survived have been signed over to the county by Cheung’s attorney and are being placed with rescue groups who have stepped up to take them, including Animal Place Sanctuary, Harvest Home Sanctuary and Farm Sanctuary.

Some of these lucky ladies are now being pampered and getting to see sunshine and feel the earth under their feet for the first time (see photos) as they learn what its like to be a real chicken, instead of an egg-machine trapped in a battery cage.

“The responsible party or parties subjected each bird to unnecessary and unjustifiable physical pain, suffering, and death,” wrote Bruce Friedrich, senior director for strategic initiatives for Farm Sanctuary. “It has been our experience over our 25 years of providing sanctuary for chickens who have been rescued from factory farms and slaughterhouses that they are deeply intelligent and inquisitive animals.”

The Animal Legal Defense Fund is watching the case and considering legal options and officials are reportedly going to pursue the matter and ask that the district attorney’s office prosecute Cheung for animal cruelty and neglect.

If you can adopt a hen, volunteer or make a donation, visit Animal Place Sanctuary (Facebook) and Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary (Facebook) and check out updates on the hens on their Facebook pages.

Take Action!

Please sign the petition asking the Stanislaus County district attorney’s office to hold Cheung accountable for his actions by pursuing the matter and prosecuting him for animal cruelty and neglect.

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Behind the “Cage-Free” Label

Care2 Success! No More Tiny Battery Cages for Chickens in the UK

Photo credit: Thinkstock


LMj Sunshine
James Merit6 years ago


LMj Sunshine
James Merit6 years ago


Linda Jarsky
Linda Jarsky6 years ago

If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men. ---St. Francis of Assisi

Debbie Crowe
Debbie Crowe6 years ago

Petition signed!!! There are other things Cheung could have done other than just leave the hens to die of starvation!! He should be jailed and given a hefty fine for what he did to those hens.

I am glad that some of them went to the santuary and know what it is to be a chicken now. Some of them are already adopted. Hopefully more will get new homes soon!!! They went through enough in this lifetime!!!

Victoria S.
Victoria S6 years ago

What an awful thing to do. They said they wanted to 'avoid the usual business practice of euthanizing the chickens ' but even that's kinder than leaving them to slowlly starve to death

Jay Williamson
Jay w6 years ago

running out of money is no excuse for leaving them starving and dying there are always options cheung should be prosecuted

Claudia Cavallo
Claudia Cavallo6 years ago

I cannot imagine how painful their last days of life must have been; the owner must pay for what he did, absolutely!!!

Hanna Barney
Hanna Barney6 years ago

"it is unacceptable"
Really? if it were unacceptable to you this would have never happened!
Liars displease me

Chloe T.
Chloe T6 years ago

Those poor babies. I couldn't live with myself if my business had to shut down and I left 50,000 chickens for dead. It's an absolute disgrace!

Sandra K.
Ruxandra K6 years ago

The Bible and subsequent Christian thought authorize humans to exploit animals purely as means to human ends.
This is the beginning of Judeo-Christian oppression of animals and nature.

In Genesis, God gave humankind “dominion over the fiŽsh of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.”
This is God’s granting a license to treat animated nature as a mere means to human ends ,a consistent Christian disregard for the value and wellbeing of animals.
Religion is the fundamental cause of neglect, an absolute and gross failure in morality and ethics.

Your God did not give you any right over anything whatsoever.
To far too many people he did not even give a brain.