Denny’s Protest: Animal Equality Stands Up for Pregnant Pigs
On Sunday, February 5, Animal Equality and fellow activists protested in front of Denny’s in Austin, Texas to take a stand for pregnant pigs suffering in the restaurant’s supply chain. This was the largest protest Animal Equality has carried out in the US, including supporters in other cities demonstrating in front of a Denny’s near them.
These protests are a response to Animal Equality’s Denny’s campaign that launched just two weeks ago. The “Always Open for Cruelty” campaign addresses one of the worst abuses—the extreme confinement of mother pigs inside tiny cages.
In 2012, Denny’s committed to eliminating the use of crates for pigs in its supply chain:
Denny’s takes its role as a responsible corporate citizen seriously. We will endeavor to purchase products from companies that provide gestation crate-free pork and are committed to influencing our suppliers to share in a gestation crate-free vision for the future.-2012 Statement by a Denny’s official (as reported by HuffPost)
The company followed up regarding its commitment in 2014: “In 2012, Denny’s was one of the first companies to initiate working with pork suppliers to eliminate gestation crates within its supply chain. This path toward a more humane supply chain is best for our company, our guests, and our continued work to improve animal welfare. In order to achieve our goal of a gestation crate-free future and to evaluate suppliers, we’re asking our pork providers for periodic updates on their progress toward group housing.”
Despite its public claims and acknowledgment that crate-free housing would lead to a “more humane supply chain,” Denny’s failed to follow through. Its leadership and employees have been made aware and are concerned about the campaign, but the company continues to remain inactive.
This Sunday’s protest in front of Denny’s was an urgent action taken by Animal Equality and animal advocates to oppose what this failed commitment means for mother pigs:
For approximately 6 million female pigs inside US factory farms, these cages—known as ‘gestation crates’—are their “home” for most of their lives. These 7-by-2-foot crates are barely bigger than the animals’ own bodies and allow no room to turn around or exhibit natural behaviors.
By failing to follow through with its commitment, this cruel and extreme confinement is being allowed by Denny’s inside its supply chain.
During the protest on Sunday, activists spoke to customers entering Denny’s during lunchtime to share about this cruelty. Many patrons were shocked—one even swore off Denny’s entirely after hearing about this suffering.
This powerful protest is just the start of Animal Equality’s actions against Denny’s. We will only stop once this multi-million dollar company takes its responsibility to these animals and its customers seriously by sticking to its promise and eliminating this cruelty.
5 Ways You Can Take A Stand for Mother Pigs:
With your help, we can convince one of the most iconic American brands to end the use of a practice that has been described by animal welfare experts as one of the cruelest forms of abuse ever devised by humankind.
Join our campaign by performing the following actions to hold Denny’s accountable for its abandoned promise to eliminate cages for mother pigs!
1. Email Denny’s Executives
On Animal Equality’s campaign page, there is an option to easily email top leadership at Denny’s. Let them know how you feel about the animal abuse they are allowing for mother pigs. Use the template to take a quick and easy action for mother pigs…or write your own!
2. Comment on Social Media
Social media is one of the best ways to expose injustice. Companies will feel the pressure from being called out, and will be more likely to take action.
- Use one of these sample comments or write one of your own:
- Is it true that Denny’s is ok with pregnant pigs being locked in cages for months? That’s what this website is saying: https://animalequality.org/action/dennys
- Why won’t Denny’s make a real and full commitment to banning cruel cages for mother pigs? This is unacceptable: https://animalequality.org/action/dennys
- Always Open for Cruelty should be Denny’s new motto! https://animalequality.org/action/dennys
- How can Denny’s allow this? This animal abuse must stop! https://animalequality.org/action/dennys
- McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, and countless other companies have pledged to stop the use of cruel gestation crates in their supply chains. Why is Denny’s refusing?
3. Call Your Local Denny’s
Find your local Denny’s and give them a call. Ask to speak to a manager and let them know that you have seen comments on social media (or heard from a friend) that Denny’s is allowing pregnant pigs to be caged for months, and you want to share your disappointment about this. They will most likely not have much to say on the matter, but ask that they please pass your message along to the owner of the location as they would probably want to know why they are losing customers.
If they want to know where this information is coming from, feel free to share the campaign website with them: animalequality.org/action/dennys
4. Leave A Negative Review
Your local Denny’s likely allows you to leave a review on Yelp, TripAdvisor, or even Facebook. Please leave a 1-star rating and a negative comment about Denny’s authorization of caging animals–you are welcome to use the example messages above in this document.
Bonus points if you download and attach one of these photos with your review.
5. Hold a Solo Protest
Protests can be a very effective way to expose injustice and influence decision-makers. While you may be unable to join us at a demonstration we organize, we invite you to hold your own (solo) protest at your local Denny’s. With several people taking this action, we can send Denny’s a powerful message: the need for immediate action to free animals from cages.
What to do:
- Download and print one of these images. You can also simply write out text on a sheet of paper or make your own poster.
- Find your local Denny’s and ask a friend to join you!
- You and your friend can take turns holding your signs and snapping each other’s picture outside of the restaurant. Make sure you can see a “Denny’s” sign in the background.
- Post the photo(s) to social media, tagging both Denny’s and Animal Equality (@animalequality). Include the campaign page in your message: https://animalequality.org/action/dennys.
Bonus Action: Choose Cruelty-Free Alternatives
One of the most important actions you can take is to not allow this suffering in your daily life by choosing plant-based alternatives to meat, dairy and eggs. Animal food products are never cruelty-free, but you can make a simple (and delicious) choice that protects animals, like mother pigs. Reducing your consumption of meat, and other animal products, has the power to save around 200 animals every year!
SAVE PIGS FROM ABUSE
Pigs are highly social animals who are often considered smarter than dogs.
You can protect these intelligent animals by simply choosing plant‑based alternatives.