Does laying eggs hurt chickens?

In this article, we will answer the question “Does laying eggs hurt chickens?”, and why do chickens squawk after laying an egg?

Does laying eggs hurt chickens?

Chickens have a well-developed nervous system, brain, and nerves. Therefore, hens do feel pain while laying eggs. The laying process is particularly painful for younger hens or if the eggs are exceptionally large. 

Because laying eggs involves stretching of the oviduct. A larger egg will naturally result in more stretching. That is why larger eggs are often smeared with bloodstains. 

Young hens have a tight cloaca which makes it hard for the egg to pass with minimum pain. The whole egg-laying process takes 24-36 hours, with 20 hours dedicated to the making of eggshells alone. The part where the egg comes out of the chicken takes anywhere from 20 seconds to 2 minutes.

What about the very large eggs at the grocery store?

It makes sense that buying large-sized eggs is extremely cruel after knowing that it particularly puts the chicken in a stressful spot. Though the chickens are adept at hiding their pain because they are preying on animals, it does not mean they do not endure the pain of laying eggs too large for their bodies to handle. 

Why do chickens squawk after laying an egg?

It may be due to the pride or the relief that follows after successfully laying an egg or it could be a mating call. Additionally, the maternal hen may squawk because she wants to warn the predators to keep away from the egg. 

Since hens are very social and communal animals, they may also squawk to divert the attention of the predator while another hen lays the eggs in her nest.

Do chickens get sad when you take their eggs?

A broody hen won’t easily get you to take her eggs. She is very protective and territorial during brooding and won’t let intruders anywhere near her eggs. 

The hen starts to peck you if she senses danger. If you are successful in snatching her eggs, she will spend hours searching for them. 

It is unclear if the hen feels sad about her eggs being taken away, but, she wants to protect them and not have them removed from her nest.

Chicken eggs come out of what hole?

The cloaca is the only hole that is responsible for both egg-laying and defecation. That is the reason why the poop after laying the eggs has blood in it.

Can an egg get stuck in a chicken?

Oddly shaped or large-sized eggs are susceptible to getting stuck in the chicken. The phenomenon where the egg gets stuck in the oviduct is called Egg binding

Egg binding is a very painful and stressful process for the chicken. It may even result in the death of the hen. 

Therefore, you must be equipped with the right knowledge to recognize when the hen is going through the egg binding stage and how to fix it.

Cruelty towards hen in factory farms 

About 95-98% of the eggs supplied to the consumer are commercially produced in the factory. Chickens go through enormous pain and stress during this process, in the factory farms. 

To start with one cruelty, the industry thinks of male chicks as useless. They are either killed by suffocation or ground while they are still alive. 

The industry does not show mercy to the female hens as well. They strip them off their beaks during the early stages of growth to create a compliant environment. This process does not involve the use of any painkillers.

Moreover, female chicks are kept in extremely small cages. This makes them very stressed and may even be fatal due to poor health conditions. 

Does laying an egg feel like human labor and birth?

The two birth processes cannot be compared. A human female spends an average of 9 hours in labor. While the actual delivery in chicken takes a minute or two or even less. 

In the case of a human female, the size of the head of the baby alone is quite large as compared to the size of the pelvis, which requires a significant amount of pain and effort to deliver the baby. 

On the other hand, healthy chickens may sometimes be eating and laying an egg simultaneously. This does not mean they do not feel pain. Of course, they do. But it is very short-lived and less strenuous as compared to human labor and birth. Both are incomparable.


In this article, we answered the question “Does laying eggs hurt chickens?”, and why do chickens squawk after laying an egg?


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