David Marek - hens rehomed in Nantwich

Keeping hens as pets is taking off big time in Cheshire – with 99% of hen keepers recommending them as pets.

The figures come from a survey by the British Hen Welfare Trust which saves ex-battery hens (ex-bats) from slaughter by rehoming them.

And Nantwich has been at the heart of the re-homing success in 2019 – with a further 600 hens likely to be found new homes in Nantwich this September and October.

It means the Cheshire public have another the chance to save some lives and enjoy keeping these wonderful pets – the fourth time this year.

Almost 100% (99.2%) of people who have rehomed ex-commercial hens would recommend the hobby to their friends and family, the latest survey says.

In a recent survey of more than 1,000 of its 60,000 supporters, the British Hen Welfare Trust (BHWT) discovered that people’s love of ex-bats (the affectionate term given to ex-battery hens) shows no sign of waning.

In fact, over half (52%) of its supporters have rehomed from the charity more than once, proving that adopting ex-bats sure is addictive.

The rehomed hens are 18-months-old and have been laying eggs to be sold in supermarkets or put into processed foods for us to buy.

Most of them will have lived in cages, meaning they’ve not experienced life outside or had the chance to become much-loved family pets.

But, given the opportunity, ex-bats are happy to become just as much a part of the family as dogs and cats, with 72% of the charity’s supporters saying they perceive their hens as being equal to other pets.

A further 13% said they saw their hens as a hobby and a nice addition to the garden.

As well as being much-loved family members, chickens are relatively inexpensive to keep once their initial needs are catered for, with rehomers telling the charity they spend between £10 and £25 per month on their hens.

The only ongoing costs associated with hen keeping are a nutritional chicken feed and bedding.

David Marek, Cheshire Co-ordinator for BHWT, said: “It’s clear that keeping ex-bats is not only hugely rewarding but adds a new dimension to family life – not to mention delicious eggs!

“I loved reading our latest Hensus results, especially when reading how hens have enriched the lives of the people who’ve rehomed them.

“I’m biased, of course, but if you’re looking for a household pet with additional egg-shaped benefits then please consider adopting some hens!”

The BHWT will be rehoming in Nantwich on Saturday September 7 and Saturday October 5.

To rehome a flock of your own simply register at www.bhwt.org.uk and then call Hen Central on 01884 860084 to complete your booking.

BHWT charity was established in 2005 by Jane Howorth, and is Britain’s first registered charity for rehoming laying hens.

In the UK there are approximately 16 million hens kept in colony cages.

The charity has so far found retirement homes for over 700,000 caged hens, all of which were destined for slaughter.

The charity has collection points across the UK and is helped by 800+ volunteers.

It also educates consumers about caged eggs hidden in processed foods, like pasta, quiches, cakes and mayonnaise so they can make an informed choice when shopping.

One Comment

  1. Kath Harris says:

    I would love to do this but my husband says that it will attract rats into the garden. Is this true? We also have a cat who hunts.

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