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Your morning adorable: Celebrating chicken athletes the world over

May 4, 2009 | 11:55 am

Today is International Respect for Chickens Day, an event "to celebrate chickens throughout the world and protest the bleakness of their lives in farming operations," according to its sponsor, United Poultry Concerns.

Our friend Andrew Malcolm at The Times' politics blog, Top of the Ticket, tells us that chicken-themed festivities are planned for cities all over the United States:

These chicken events are designed to "capture the beauty, joy, intelligence, dignity and zany exuberance of chickens," according to UPC. ...

These days the swine industry is gathering much of the public's negative attention. But chicken lovers this month are pushing their vegan agenda by warning widely that chickens and egg products, which come out of the back end of chickens, are the most common source of household food poisonings. Factor that into your menu planning!

"Over the years," says UPC President Karen Davis, "people who once thought they would never care about a chicken have changed their minds after learning about the terrible suffering endured by these birds and after meeting some happy chickens who escaped to live in our sanctuary."

For our part, we can't think of a better way to celebrate the humble chicken than by watching it strive for excellence through athletics. We've surely all seen dog agility -- heck, maybe even bunny agility. But chicken agility? Who knew?

-- Lindsay Barnett

Video: hollyd443 via YouTube

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