Forced Molting

American Veterinary Medical Association
Betrays Veterinarian's Oath

to “use my scientific knowledge and skills for the benefit of society through the
[promotion of public health], protection of animal health, and the relief of animal suffering.”

“We have an obligation to provide proper care even if the economics do not support it.”
– William B. Chase, DVM, Symposium
on Poultry Management and Production, July 11, 1999

Instead of leading the campaign to ban forced molting, the AVMA continues to betray its Oath in favor of cruel economic practices that the AVMA's own research has shown to be inhumane and disease-producing. At its House of Delegates meeting in July, the AVMA vetoed a resolution to upgrade its policy statement endorsing forced molting to a policy of opposition to forced molting. The AVMA has been besieged by the public, thousands of veterinarians, and virtually the entire animal protection community in response to the national campaign being waged by United Poultry Concerns and the Association of Veterinarians for Animal Rights to end forced molting.

Out of career interests the AVMA has intentionally deceived the public, betrayed the birds, and betrayed its own moral and intellectual integrity by falsely comparing the deliberate starvation of hens in confinement to hens who are sitting on eggs in a state of motherhood. However, a brooding hen does not lose her immune function and get sick in order to become a mother, as do hens being starved in their cages. Nor does a brooding hen forego food entirely. A brooding hen (a hen sitting on eggs) leaves her nest every day for 10 to 15 minutes to stretch, eat, drink, and defecate. If mother hens lost their immune function and developed diseased reproductive systems as do hens being force molted, chickens would have become extinct a long time ago. Individual members of the AVMA confided to United Poultry Concerns their personal disgust with the association's miserable stand on forced molting at the Symposium on Poultry Management and Production that was part of the AVMA's annual meeting in July.

What Can I Do?
  • Tell the AVMA to oppose the withholding of food from hens for any length of time. Tell the association to live up to its oath to protect public and animal health and relieve animal suffering. Write to:
    Richard C. Swanson, President
    American Veterinary Medical Association
    1931 North Meacham Rd, Suite 100
    Schaumburg, IL 60173-4360