Acta Analytica 35 (3):463-468 (2020)

Bob Fischer
Texas State University
C. E. Abbate (2019) argues that, under certain conditions, cat guardians have a moral duty to allow their feline companions to roam freely outdoors. She contends that outdoor access is crucial to feline flourishing, which means that, in general, to keep cats indoors permanently is to harm them. She grants that, in principle, we could justify preventing cats from roaming based on the fact that some cats kill wildlife. However, she points out that not all cats are guilty of this charge, and she argues that, in any case, cats don’t cause more harm to wildlife—and may actually cause less—than those animals would suffer anyway. I criticize both of these replies, arguing that cat guardians have a responsibility not to let their cats harm wildlife, that cat guardians usually don’t know whether their cats kill wildlife, and that, on balance, cat-caused harms to wildlife may well outweigh the harms that cats suffer when confined.
Keywords cats  wildlife  wild animal suffering
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DOI 10.1007/s12136-020-00431-3
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References found in this work BETA

Animal Rights and the Duty to Harm: When to Be a Harm Causing Deontologist.C. E. Abbate - 2020 - Journal for Ethics and Moral Philosophy 3 (1):5-26.
The Ethics of Confining Animals: From Farms to Zoos to Human Homes.David DeGrazia - 2011 - In Tom Beauchamp & R. G. Frey (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Animal Ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Animal Rights and the Duty to Harm: When to Be a Harm Causing Deontologist.C. E. Abbate - 2020 - Zeitschrift Für Ethik Und Moralphilosophie 3 (1):5-26.

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Noble Animals, Brutish Animals.Marcus Hunt - 2021 - Between the Species 24 (1):70-92.

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