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Andrew N. Rowan, Tamara Kartal and John Hadidian

Abstract

The estimated populations of domestic cats in the USA, whether pets, stray or feral, vary widely and have changed significantly over the past forty to fifty years. Accurate estimates of these populations are necessary to determine appropriate policy responses to calls to control domestic cats and to determine the impact of domestic cats on wildlife populations. Domestic cat predation on wild animals is being hotly debated in Australia, New Zealand and the USA (but much less so in the UK). The paper explores some of the different policy approaches being promoted in each country and examines the status of cats in each country. For example, although there is strong movement to control cat predation in New Zealand, the country also has the highest relative (to humans) population of pet cats in the world, despite the vulnerability of native animals to predation by introduced carnivores.

Bernard Rollin

Abstract

It is important to stress at the beginning of our discussion the current nature of animal welfare in the US and Europe, because ideas that develop there tend to spread across the world, partly for cultural and partially for economic reasons. Historically, animal welfare was associated with good husbandry, treating the animals well in order to ensure their productivity. Almost until the 20th century, the only articulated social ethic pertaining to animals was a prohibition against deliberate sadistic cruelty. Good husbandry persisted, unfortunately, as an ideal only as long as it was essential for the assurance of productivity. With the rise of the Industrial Revolution, the “ancient contract” represented by husbandry was abandoned in the name of profit. Subsequently, by the 20th century, animal agriculture had become industrialized and dominated by high-technology, allowing the placing of round pegs in square holes, despite some 10,000 years of the ancient husbandry contract. In addition, animal welfare was compromised by the significant rise of animal research in a science that denied any truck with ethics. It must be recalled that despite widespread belief to the contrary among scientists and production agriculturalists, animal welfare is inescapably in part an ethical notion, not strictly a scientific one. In fact, how one views animal welfare ethically determines the shape of the science studying animal welfare, not vice versa. At least in Western societies, the consensus societal ethic will establish the dominant notion of animal welfare, achieved by extending our ethic for humans. While numerous other societies (for example Hindu or Buddhist societies) have excellent theoretical views of animal welfare, they often fail to be instantiated in practice. Latin America also lacks a robust animal ethic.

David Lamb

Abstract

Mainstream theories which argue for enhanced ethical status of animals with appeals to sentience or intelligence have depicted aesthetics in a negative sense. This paper supports a different outlook. We explore reasons why aesthetic appreciation of animals is portrayed as subjective and sentimental, concerned only with superficial and external features. Aesthetic qualities, as understood here, are not intended as criteria for admission to a moral community or as a guide for veterinary professionals when prioritizing therapy. The case for measuring the extent of an animal’s beauty or attractiveness in order to establish its entitlement to moral status or rights is a non-starter. Nevertheless, aesthetic traditions, we argue, play a significant role in our moral response to animals and objectives to protect them. As a corrective to misunderstandings regarding the status of aesthetics in deliberation about moral obligations to animals a case for the integration of ethics and aesthetics is developed.

Bernard Rollin and Barbara de Mori

G.E. Seidel Jr.

Abstract

People involved with production animal agriculture in the U.S., including owners and workers, are often portrayed as callous to animal welfare. While callous people exist in any population, I maintain that most people who own and work with farm animals do consider animal welfare, both for moral and economic reasons. It is rare that stressed, unhealthy or injured animals are more profitable than healthy, unstressed ones. Furthermore, the owners of farm animals and related facilities overwhelmingly are families or individuals (~97%), not corporations; most owners of so-called industrial farms are but a generation removed from so-called family farms, and most of these owners still have values similar to those of traditional family farms, although their hired workers may not. Farmers need to have income, so husbandry practices need to be profitable for farms to be sustainable. However, production animal agriculture has not been very profitable, partly because most products are commodities, and this low profitability has been a major cause of the huge decrease in numbers of farmers and farm units over the past century. The net result is larger units with less attention paid to individual animals, which can be problematic, but does not necessarily result in decreased animal welfare. Modern genetic tools and facilities can be used to promote animal welfare simultaneously with improving production efficiency and economic viability.

Thomas M. Edling

Abstract

Animals have been by our sides since the beginning and continue to be shaped and molded by human actions. We all started on a somewhat equal footing, but now we are not. Animals can still outperform people in every aspect of the physical world such as size, strength, speed, quickness, and eyesight. But, humans have surpassed all animals in the ability to use our thoughts, ideas and physical attributes to change the world. It is a fact that one of the major changes in the world is that humans now use animals in a variety of ways. Veterinarians are called upon to work with animals society has placed in our path and provide them with the best life possible. It is important work that must be done. We veterinarians are uniquely qualified, positioned and ethically bound to use our world changing abilities to bring animals back to the equal moral footing they deserve.

Denise Remy and R. ter Meulen

Abstract

Amongst the current, most important, international priorities in public health is the issue of bacterial resistance to antibiotics. This issue is due to the wide misuse and overuse of these drugs, both in human and veterinary medicine. Veterinarians fulfil a very important role as guardians of animal health and as public health actors; if they do not use antimicrobials judiciously, animal health and welfare as well as public health will be severely compromised. Therefore it is of particular importance to study the professional ethos of veterinarians as regards the delivery of antibiotics for animals. In Europe laws and practices regarding the delivery of antimicrobial drugs for animals differ from state to state. In some states, veterinarians are not allowed to sell drugs, they only prescribe, and pharmacists deliver the drugs. In other states, including France, veterinarians are allowed to deliver the drugs they prescribe. In France, veterinarians have thus been accused of conflict of interest; of overprescribing to sell more antibiotics and thus earn more money. Therefore, it appeared particularly accurate to not only study the ethos of veterinarians regarding the delivery of antibiotics to animals, but to also compare this ethos to that of pharmacists. To the authors’ knowledge, such a study has never been carried out in any country. Veterinarians’ and pharmacists’ professional literature was studied and compared using qualitative and quantitative content analysis. A sample of comparable journals was selected for both professions. The study was carried out over a relevant five year period extending from the beginning of 2008 till the end of 2012. All papers dealing with antimicrobial resistances as well as the prescription and delivery of antibiotics for animals were objectively and comprehensively searched and collected using keywords. The selected papers were subsequently independently coded by a multidisciplinary team of coders using conventional, inductive, thematic analysis. The final coding grid was obtained after consensus meetings were held in order to ensure reliability and validity of the data. The results showed that the veterinarians’ professional literature studied reflected a primary concern for ethics whereas the pharmacists’ professional literature primarily focused on marketing. Half of the veterinary continuing education papers dealt with different aspects of ethics; the other half focused on the scientific aspects of antimicrobial resistances. Amongst other papers, more than 30% tackled ethical questions in relation with the delivery of antibiotics for animals. Conversely, in the pharmacists’ literature, half of the continuing education papers concentrated on marketing; the other half described the pharmacology of drugs. Amongst other papers, 60% addressed marketing issues. Ethical questions per se were not approached in the pharmacists’ professional literature studied. In conclusion, veterinary ethos for prescription ethics, good antibiotic use and animal welfare seems to be a feature of the profession. According to this research, the claim that veterinarians are responsible for antibiotic resistances because of conflict of interest is not true.

Temple Grandin

Abstract

In 1978, the first GMO was insulin. By creating a new form of life, cattle and pig slaughter was no longer required to obtain lifesaving insulin. Maybe in the distant future, raising animals for food might become obsolete. This may occur when genetic engineering methods for creating totally novel animals and plants becomes reality. Then the ethical questions would become much greater than raising livestock. Animal welfare issues on today’s farms can be corrected. Environmental issues should be addressed by integrating crops with livestock and better grazing management. The best soils in the U.S. were created by grazing bison. The animals are part of the land.

David Fraser

Abstract

In Western culture, animal ethics has traditionally emphasized acts of deliberate cruelty and, in the twentieth century, institutionalized harms to animals through activities such as meat production and biomedical research. However, with a large human population and technologies that developed mostly during the last century, a new set of harms—unintended and often acting indirectly—now injure and kill vast numbers of animals. Unintended harms arise from human artifacts such as cars, windows and communication towers. Indirect harms occur from disturbances to the balances and processes of nature, for example through pollution, introduction of alien species and climate change. These harms will undoubtedly increase unless they become a focus of attention and mitigation. A new animal ethic is needed to incorporate these harms into ethical thought. It will need to address such issues as responsibility for unintended versus intended harms, and for collective versus individual actions, and it will greatly narrow the gap between animal ethics and environmental ethics.

Series:

Edited by Krisztina Lajosi and Andreas Stynen

This wide-ranging contribution to the study of nationalism and the social history of music examines the relationship between choral societies and national mobilization in the nineteenth century. From Norway to the Basque country and from Wales to Bulgaria, this pioneering study explores and compares the ways choral societies influenced and reflected the development of national awareness under differing political and social circumstances. By the second half of the nineteenth century, organized communal singing became a primary leisure activity that attracted all layers of society. Though strongly patriotic in tone, choral societies borrowed from each other and relied heavily on prominent German or French models. This volume is the first to address both the national and transnational significance of choral singing.

Contributors are: Carmen De Las Cuevas Hevia, Jan Dewilde, Tomáš Kavka, Anne Jorunn Kydland, Krisztina Lajosi, Joep Leerssen, Sophie-Anne Leterrier, Jane Mallinson, Tatjana Marković, Fiona M. Palmer, Karel Šima, Andreas Stynen, Dominique Vidaud, Ivanka Vlaeva, Jozef Vos, Gareth Williams, Hana Zimmerhaklová.