United Poultry Concerns
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27 August 2014
Karen Davis’s Podcast Interview,
Robert Grillo’s Memorial to Doris

Freedom of Species, Melbourne, Australia
- Norm Phelps, “The Longest Struggle”

We chat with the pioneering Karen Davis about some issues that are ignited by this industry where our fellow winged species are imprisoned & abused because of human-kind’s thoughtless & cruel taste for cheap meat. Karen Davis is President & Founder of the US based nonprofit organization United Poultry Concerns, publisher of the renowned Poultry Press, author of books including “Prisoned Chickens, Poisoned Eggs” & “The Holocaust & the Henmaid’s Tale.” Karen's campaign work with UPC has been far reaching globally including founding an International Respect for Chickens Day. There is a lot to learn from Karen's story & career - So tune in & check out the UPC website! Listen Here:
Freedom of Species

For information on Melbourne Chicken Save:
Melbourne Chicken Save

Karen with Little Rhody

UPC president Karen Davis holds Miss Rhoda Rhody shortly after her rescue.

Remembering Doris, by Robert Grillo. Free from Harm

Photo: Doris was one of the great loves, gifts, joys and inspirations in my life.

Robert Grillo’s beloved hen Doris died suddenly and unexpectedly on Monday, August 18, 2014.

Robert Grillo, August 25, 2014

Doris was one of the great loves, gifts, joys and inspirations in my life. I’ve been in such a funk since she unexpectedly died a week ago today, this is the first time I could actually bring myself to write about her. Last Monday, she awoke bright-eyed and bushy-tailed as usual, visited with me as I worked, ate some of her favorite food, grapes, and then died shortly thereafter. This is known as “sudden death syndrome.”

My hope for Doris was that she would be the one to beat the odds hens like her bred for egg laying must face. Between all of the diseases of reproduction we breed into them to get more eggs out of them, I prayed each day she would somehow overcome it all to live a long healthy life. But, alas, she did not. She died in the prime of her life from yet another outcome of her breeding which creates defects in their hearts — weak hearts — that are prone to fail.

Doris will forever be in my heart and my thoughts, and I whispered that to her often as she lay peacefully in my lap. In fact, I made a point of spending quality time with Doris daily. My morning ritual always began with the joy of finding Doris already awake and ready to start a new day. She would follow me around until I sat down, and then jump up in my lap. She loved to be held close to my side, with arms wrapped around her, as she purred to express her contentment. When I would leave the house to run errands, she cried after me. Upon returning home, we couldn’t wait to be reunited, even if it was just a couple of hours. I had never before experienced such a special bond with a non-human before Doris.

As I grieve the loss of Doris, I grieve for all of the birds like her and all of the other animals who never knew a kind human touch. It troubles me daily to think about all the chickens like Doris who seek out our kindness and affection, but instead receive only the callous treatment of farm workers, or, at best, are valued only for their eggs, when in fact they have so much more to offer, if we only open our minds and hearts to them. And emboldened by the strength of her lovely spirit, I resolve to become a better, more effective advocate to celebrate those we may never know, those whom film director Liz Marshall so aptly calls, The Ghosts in Our Machine. May they be discovered, understood, known, loved and, ultimately, free.

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