Other animals are used in a variety of ways for entertainment, labour, and companionship.
Other animals are used in a variety of ways for entertainment, labour, and companionship. Some of these forms of use are extremely harmful, causing physical and psychological pain, and death. Other forms are less obviously harmful but the fact remains that they are predicated on breeding other beings for human use. They are not valued for who they are but for their utilitarian value to us. This inequality is based on the idea that difference equates with inferiority; it is the same mistaken notion that causes slavery and that underlies all forms of discrimination against humans.
There is an easy way to measure fairness to other animals: ask yourself if it would be acceptable to use humans in the ways we use other animals?
The Forgotten History of Human Zoos
The animals who are kept confined in zoos, circuses and aquaparks cannot live according to their natural instincts. Their complex social and emotional lives are severely curtailed by their lack of freedom. Some of them are tortured in order to train them to perform meaningless tricks for human amusement. It is neither educational nor entertaining to watch other animals living in hyperconfined environments, behaving in ways that are forced upon them rather than of their own volition, and utterly deprived of the freedom of the wild. If the owner of a zoo is calling for their abolition on grounds of unfairness to other animals, isn’t it time the public stopped paying for this injustice?
It doesn’t take a genius to recognise that chasing and killing someone for fun is not acceptable. Yet hunting foxes and deer, chasing hares, and killing wildlife for fun is widely practiced. Some animals are hunted for food but as animals are not food, hunting them is nothing more than gratuitous violence.
Some animals are wounded and left to die prolonged deaths. Their offspring are left without parents to feed them.
Further information is available on the following pages:
Breeding other animals to use them as companions has led to an industry that generates profit for breeders and a plethora of physical health problems for the animals they breed. In addition, there is the very significant problem of homeless, neglected, unwanted, and abused companion animals. If you would like to care for another animal being, rescue, don’t buy.
There is a close association between the meat industry and the clothing industry. Leather and wool are slaughterhouse byproducts. There is no difference between using someone for their flesh and using them for their skin.
Some of these items are not just by-products of the slaughterhouse. Down feathers, for example, are obtained by plucking living ducks and geese, causing them pain and distress. Animals used for their fur are caged, frequently skinned alive, and suffer brutal deaths.
The Witness, Tribe of Heart Production. Watch Free.
It is not acceptable to use other animals for their labour such as guide dogs or therapy animals. As humans we can provide these services for each other.
It is not acceptable to use non-humans for entertainment or education such as riding or in petting zoos. Alternatives include getting to know other animals through documentaries, books, and websites, or visiting them at vegan sanctuaries.