Animal Welfare

We hear a lot about animal welfare. What is animal welfare, and why is it important?

Animal welfare is about the wellbeing of animals in our care.

We don't tend to talk about the welfare of animals in the wild. It is only when humans start domesticating animals and controlling their lives that welfare is specifically considered. Things such as provision of food, water, shelter, freedom from pain and fear, and allowing them to behave normally are all animal welfare issues.

Why is it important? Two main reasons:

  1. Because animals kept as pest or farmed have a right to have their welfare needs met by those caring for them
  2. Because we are judged by others (personally and internationally) on how we treat our animals.

 

Who judges what is good or bad welfare?

Many acknowledged experts in the animal sciences have combined their wisdom to help understand and advocate good animal welfare principles.

These are reviewed regularly in light of new information or practices.