Well, it seems I have become a target for vegan-anti-meat types. I got an email from a lady today that supports a sanctuary that "rescues" and adopts out farm animals(cows, pigs, sheep, goats, rabbits, chickens, turkeys). Of course, I offered to relieve their overwhelmed sanctuary of farm animals but I don't think they liked that too much. Can you imagine the bar-b-que I could have? The whole neighborhood would get a meal! What an opportunity for me to teach others more about self sustained living!
While the intention behind the nice lady's email was a waste of hers and my time, she did make a couple good points right off I thought I should mention to my suburban and city readers. It concerns the keeping of chickens and rabbits.
Chickens and rabbits are super easy to keep in small spaces and produce a large quantity of food for just a little bit of feed and care. The problem comes in when folks try to keep too many animals in one little spot. Chickens need about 3sq feet of room to stay happy and healthy and you need to check your city ordinances before buying chickens so you don't end up having to get rid of your new flock as soon as you move them in. Rabbits should be kept in minimum of a 18"x18" cage and one per cage. big rabbits like Checkered Giants need a much bigger space. You must also think about butcher time. If you can't kill that animal when it comes time, perhaps you shouldn't think about raising them for meat.
For me, it's easy to whack even a cute little bunny for the supper table, but I've been doing this for a long time. The very first one was hard to do. Especially since it had a name, I petted it and cared for it, played with it, etc. The very first Hog I butchered, i cried all the way thru it. His name was Wilbur and I loved that pig. He made some pretty darn tasty sausage too.
There's lots of abuse going on in commercial slaughterhouses and chicken hatcheries. yes, they do some horrible things for money. Factory farms are an outrage to humanity and should be eliminated with extreme predjudice. I agree with that side of the arguement. If you don't like the idea of eating meat that was treated or handled in such a manner, DON'T EAT IT. Simple as that. If you think commercially produced pork and beef is nasty, don't eat it. If you think commercially butchered chickens are treated in an inhumane manner, don't eat them. Nobody is forcing any of us to eat meat from the grocery store. I don't eat meat from any grocery store, I raise my own. They are fed all natural feeds i grow myself without chemical fertilizers, they never get antibiotics or growth hormones. So, why is the meat I raise and butcher for myself bad? It's not and the meat you raise for yourself isn't bad either.
Just think before you bring animals home to raise for meat. If you can't kill them when it comes time, don't bring them home. If you can tho, you're going to be amazed at the quality and the taste of your own home raised meat!