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ETHICAL TREATMENT OF ANIMALS. AGST 3000 Agriculture, Society, and the Natural World. Home Assignment for next week… Access the websites on the next slide. Find at least two other sites, one that promotes animal welfare and one that promotes animal rights and bring the url for each. .

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ethical treatment of animals

AGST 3000

Agriculture, Society, and the Natural World

Home Assignment for next week…

Access the websites on the next slide. Find at least two other sites, one that promotes animal welfare and one that promotes animal rights and bring the url for each.

some interesting sites
Some Interesting Sites

  • Animal Ethics issue began in Europe in the 1960s.
      • Ruth Harrison’s Animal Machines
      • Brambell Committee 1965
  • 1993 UK Farm Animal Welfare Council published the 5 new freedoms.


1866 – Henry Bergh founds American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

1896-1900 – Legislation is proposed in Congress to restrict vivisection via a system of regulations and periodic inspection of laboratories.

1951 – Animal Welfare Institute founded

1954 – Humane Society of the United States founded



1958 – Federal Humane Slaughter Act is passed.

1966 – Congress passes the American Welfare Act (AWA)

1990 – The Animal Legal Defense Fund and the HSUS both sue the USDA. The USDA extends AWA coverage to horses and other farm animals used in research.

a global look
A Global Look
  • New Zealand has had an Animal Protection Act of 1960, but as the issue of animal ethics evolved the Act became inadequate.
  • Consumers, both domestic and overseas (the U.S.), wanted assurances that animals were being treated humanely.
      • Est. Animal Welfare Act of 1999.
      • It focuses on Preventing animal cruelty.
a global look cont
A Global Look cont.
  • Switzerland is another example of a country with an Animal Welfare Act.
    • 1981 Swiss Animal Protection Act - this act made Switzerland the first country to ban cages in egg production.
      • Nests & perches
      • 800 sq. centimeter
  • Swiss poultry farmers have made profits using this method.
two major points of view
Two Major Points of View
  • (1) Animal Rights - the goal is ending all animal use
      • no food, clothing, entertainment, medical research or hunting
  • (2) Animal Welfare – demands that animals must be treated and used humanely.
      • Animals can be used for any purpose, but the responsibility of care and humane treatment lies with the human


Animal welfare is the theory which maintains that it is morally acceptable to use nonhuman animals for human purposes as long as they are treated humanely and do not impose unnecessary suffering on them.

The goal of animal welfare is the regulation of animal use.



  • The Animal Welfare Information Center (AWIC)
  • Animal Agriculture Alliance
  • The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
  • The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA)
  • The California Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA)


The animal rights theory maintains that we have no moral justification for using nonhuman animals for human purposes however humanely we treat them.n

The goal of animal rights activists is to abolish the use of animals.



  • People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)
  • The Animal Place
  • The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)
understanding agriculture
Understanding Agriculture
  • Animal producers see themselves as more understanding of their animals’ needs than do the general public.
      • During WWII farmers still relied on their animals for their livelihood.
      • By the 70s there was a move to commercial production (industrialization of Agriculture).
general public might not be so well informed
General Public might not be so well informed…
  • Society is concerned with animal well-being and depending on who they listen to determines peoples impressions
    • this has prompted a response from the food industry.
  • Resulted in industry changes
      • McDonald’s Animal Welfare Guiding Principles
      • Wendy’s Animal Welfare Auditing Program
economic significance
Economic Significance
  • Treating animals inhumanely results in economic costs.
    • Bruising of animals costs the industries millions of dollars each year.
      • Australia $36 million
  • With Pigs, using electric prods causes bruising.
  • Improvements in these areas will improve animal welfare as well as human safety.


Animal Cruelty is against the Law!

Difficult Topic, No Easy Answers

Very Political

Animal Rights vs. Animal Welfare

how animals are used
How Animals are used
  • Animals for meat
  • Animals for milk
  • Animals for fiber
  • Animals for pharmaceutical production (live)
  • Animals for pharmaceutical production (organs)
  • Animals for research
  • Animals for companionship
  • Animals for exhibition
  • Other?
Animal Agriculture

Pastoral vs. Confinement



Free-Range System offer chickens a choice between large indoor and outdoor runs.

agriculture as the target
Agriculture as the target
  • Why? Unscrupulous Producers…
  • Media sensationalism
  • Again, what is justified, scientific, and valid…
  • Continues to be a difficult area for most people
Specific Food and Fiber Specie Issues
  • Husbandry practices:
    • Based primarily on safety and health, consumer preference, and economics.
  • Some specific practices, poorly understood by the public and are sources of misinformation disseminated by opponents of animal agriculture

1. Restraint

2. Management practices

a. branding

b. dehorning

c. castration

d. ear tagging/marking

3. Dairy Industry

a. BST (Bovine Somatotropin)

b. Genetics (bio-engineering)

c. Calf rearing (confinement)

d. Veal production (abuses)

industry conflicts
Industry Conflicts
  • BEEFIndustry:
    • Practices such as dehorning, castration and branding which cause some pain and can be seen as animal cruelty.
    • Dehorning: benefits both cattle and human handlers
    • Castration: unwanted breeding, reduces male aggressiveness and produces better quality meat
    • Branding: used for identification mainly in the Western States
beef cont
BEEF cont.
  • Another issue is the Feedlot vs Pastoral grazing.
    • Carefully managed feed, receive the best health care, all their needs are met.
dairy industry issues
Dairy Industry Issues
  • Pastoral vs Confined
      • Animal activists lean towards pastoral grazing
      • In Sweden they passed legislation that says that grazing is a right.
      • Problems with pasturing are:
        • short grazing season
        • inefficient nutrients required for high milk yield
  • Tail Docking is an emerging issue (new Zealand).

a. Castration

b. Ear tagging/marking

c. Docking

d. Shearing


1. Confinement production

a. caged laying hens

b. large scale broiler

2. Production

3. Force molting

4. Beak Trimming


1. Confinement production

a. farrowing crates

b. market hog production

c. gestation stalls

2. Management practices

a. ear notching

b. tail removal

c. needle teeth removal


1. Confinement

2. PMSG production

(Pregnant Mare Serum Gonadotropin)

  • increases the number of follicles developing in the ovary of non-horse species
  • Used to induce labor in horse and some other species

3. Show strategies

groups involved
Groups Involved
  • American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) - focus on animal welfare
      • proper housing, nutrition, humanely handling and humane deaths
  • Promote point of view:
      • advocate their policy on Federal legislation (they have a Governmental Relations Division)
      • In Process: Amendment to the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act.
groups involved cont
Groups involved cont.
  • Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) - animal welfare supporter
    • work to protect endangered species, improve lives of animals used in experiments and advocate humane farm practices
  • Promote:
    • established Animal Welfare Approved: the program focuses on the animal in food production
    • the standards try to emulate the animals natural behavior
  • Animal Welfare Approved Standards for Beef Cattle and Calves
      • must be allowed to graze
      • room to walk around and lay down on side
  • Also promote through their legislative division, Society for Animal Protective Legislation (SAPL).
    • They are dedicated to promoting and protecting animal welfare in local, Federal and International Legislation.
groups involved cont36
Groups Involved cont.
  • PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) - animal rights supporter
    • work to stop animal abuse
    • compare animals to human children
  • Promote: they get involved directly
      • consumer boycotts
      • recognition internationally due to the media and have been able to bring about long term changes
groups involved cont37
Groups Involved cont.
  • Animal Liberation Front (ALF) - animal rights advocate
    • fighting the injustice which they compare to the fight to abolish slavery
    • consider themselves “the ultimate freedom movement.”
  • Promote: through direct action
      • damage and destroy property and equipment
      • free animals from laboratories
      • use arson
laws and regulations
Laws and Regulations
  • The Animal Welfare Act of 1966, 1970.
    • Defines how animals are used, treated, housed, transported, processed, etc.
  • Many different organizations have established rules and regulations:
      • Professional Rodeo Association - have 60 rules and regulations.
  • Humane Slaughter Act 1958
Humane Methods of Slaughter Act 1978
      • extended the 1958 policy to all Federally inspected slaughter plants
  • Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) enforces the Act
      • veterinarian and inspectors present
animals used for research
Animals used for Research
  • Medical Research
  • Consumer Research
  • Agriculture Research
  • Psychological and Social Research
  • Environmental Research
  • Are there alternatives?
Laboratory Animals for Research
  • 23 million mice are used in research each year (95%)
  • Rats make up the second largest group
  • Followed by birds
companion animals
Companion Animals
  • Animal Cruelty
    • Neglect
    • Abuse
    • Pet Shops
    • Puppy mills
    • Fighting
tough one
Tough one…
  • It is up to the individual as to how they feel personally.
  • Research the issues

What are the alternatives?

Vegetarian, human research subjects, no companion animals?

No easy answers!

  • What is the difference between Animal Rights and Animal Welfare?
  • What are some of the organizations that promote animal rights and what is their recurring theme(s)?
  • What are some of the organizations that promote animal welfare and what is their recurring theme(s)?
  • There are a large number of animals utilized for research. Do you think this is right ? Are there alternatives, what are they?
  • Do you think that people should be allowed to have pets?
  • Should we be concerned about how farm animals are treated?
  • Where do you stand on this issue and why? (I believe that…)