A History of Animal Welfare Science

Acta Biotheoretica 59 (2):121-137 (2011)
Abstract
Human attitudes to animals have changed as non-humans have become more widely incorporated in the category of moral agents who deserve some respect. Parallels between the functioning of humans and non-humans have been made for thousands of years but the idea that the animals that we keep can suffer has spread recently. An improved understanding of motivation, cognition and the complexity of social behaviour in animals has led in the last 30 years to the rapid development of animal welfare science. Early attempts to define welfare referred to individuals being in harmony with nature but the first usable definition incorporated feelings and health as part of attempts to cope with the environment. Others considered that welfare is only about feelings but it is argued that as feelings are mechanisms that have evolved they are a part of welfare rather than all of it. Most reviews of welfare now start with listing the needs of the animal, including needs to show certain behaviours. This approach has used sophisticated studies of what is important to animals and has replaced the earlier general guidelines described as freedoms. Many measures of welfare are now used and indicate how good or how poor the welfare is. Naturalness is not a part of the definition of welfare but explains why some needs exist. In recent years, welfare has become established as one of various criteria used to decide on whether a system is sustainable because members of the public will not accept systems that cause poor welfare. The study of welfare has become part of the scientific basis upon which important political decisions are made
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index Translate to english
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,360
External links
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA

    No references found.

    Citations of this work BETA
    John Hadley (2013). Liberty and Valuing Sentient Life. Ethics and the Environment 18 (1):87-103.
    Similar books and articles
    Dita Wickins-Drazilova (2006). Zoo Animal Welfare. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 19 (1):27-36.
    Dita Wickins-Dražilová (2006). Zoo Animal Welfare. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 19 (1):27-36.
    J. F. Hurnik & Hugh Lehman (1988). Ethics and Farm Animal Welfare. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 1 (4):305-318.
    James W. Yeates (2010). Death is a Welfare Issue. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 23 (3):229-241.
    Analytics

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index

    2011-03-03

    Total downloads

    21 ( #68,757 of 1,089,062 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    1 ( #69,801 of 1,089,062 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature


    Discussion
    Start a new thread
    Order:
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.