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Animal Suffering: Philosophy and Culture by E. Aaltola

By E. Aaltola

Exploring how animal agony is made significant inside of Western ramifications, the ebook investigates subject matters akin to skepticism relating non-human adventure, cultural roots of compassion, and modern ways to animal ethics. At its middle is the pivotal query: what's the ethical importance of animal anguish?

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12). It is commonly argued that welfare concerns the manner in which individual animals cope with the demands placed on them by their environments and their own bodies. Thus, one of the leading scientists in the field of animal welfare, Donald Broom, defines welfare in the following terms: ‘The welfare of an individual animal is its state as regards its attempt to cope with its environment, with attempts to cope including the functioning of body repair systems, immunological defenses, the physiological stress response and a variety of behavioural responses’ (Broom 1996).

How the society understands ‘animal welfare’ or ‘animal suffering’ is not so much the product of welfare scientists, but rather of industry spokespeople and McDonalds’ adverts. It should be evident that there is something wrong with this picture. Those who most benefit from ignoring animal welfare and suffering should not be the ones who get to choose how animals are treated. The future does not look particularly bright. As in most Western countries, the US government has pushed for intensification and consolidation of animal production: farms must become ever bigger and more efficient in order for the industry to minimize costs.

In other words, they tell us that the animal experiences her situation in an extremely negative way, and therefore speak volumes about animal suffering (Fraser 2008; see also Broom and Fraser 2007). Other types of behaviour, too, tell us of animal experience and offer strong reasons to believe that the welfare of animals is compromised. ‘Vacuum activity’ refers to a situation in which an animal cannot fulfil a tendency innate to herself, and where she will, as a result, resort to various inappropriate actions (calves suckling on iron bars is a typical example).

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