In an Australian first, the Pet Industry of Australia recently announced that Canberra is set to recognise animals as SENTIENT BEINGS.
A Sentient Being is a creature that can suffer and feel pain – mostly animals and humans. It extends to a being with the faculty of sensation and the power to perceive, reason and think.
It’s a bit of a no-brainer for us humans – we definitely feel pain and (most of us) have the power to reason and to make every effort to avoid pain!
As such, we tend to treat all people as equal – knowing that everyone feels the same.
With animal’s it’s not so easy.
Not because they’re not sentient beings, but because of the way we treat them.
Should a cow being reared for food be treated differently to a companion animal?
Should a fish be ignored because it’s swimming in a ‘responsibly sourced’ enclosure?
Or a pig in a sow stall somewhere in the back of beyond?
Responsible pet owners are rejoicing int he new laws being initiated in the ACT which includes:
- Harsher fines for mistreatment including up to $4,000 for confining a pet for more than 24 hours
- Injuring an animal and not reporting it – including hitting a kangaroo
- Under the new laws people can legally break into cars to protect animals
Under the proposal laws, the ACT would become the first jurisdiction in the country to recognise the idea that animals are able to feel and perceive the world.
Having said that, it would appear that not all animals are created equal.
A veterinarian commenting on the new laws said it was important to clearly define which animals were recognised as sentient, saying that classifying large animals – like cows – as being such would get in the way of the economy.
He went on to say that Farmers spend money on the animal if it gets them more money. It’s apparently a profit thing – not based on sentimental value, but on economic value.
At Frontier Pet’s we believe that all animals are created equal.
If the definition of sentient is that an animal can feel fear and can reason, then a cow is just as sentient as the family pet.
Daniel Weary, an applied animal biologist at the University of British Columbia, has made a study of cows and found that calves are affected by the emotional pain of separation from their mother and the physical pain of dehorning. He found that both types of pain can result in a negative cognitive bias similar to pessimism.
Pigs are intelligent, emotional and complex animals who can actually solve problems and have individual personalities. They are widely considered to be more intelligent than dogs. Yet we keep them in cages while they grow fat enough to eat.
There is also a common misconception that fish do not feel pain so little or no attention is given to suffering of these animals as most are fully conscious during slaughter, which can take many minutes. They are often not stunning and are killed by bleeding out, being hit on the head repeatedly, suffocating or freezing.
Imagine doing that to your fur baby?
We recognise that farm animals are bred for food.
We also recognise that there is no need for them to suffer and live a life of misery before and during slaughter.
As Philip Lymbery, author and CEO of Compassion in World Farming so eloquently says:
“Our pets would be shocked to learn that their food has been created from the misery of another beautiful sentient being.”
Frontier Pets has one vision: to end Factory Farming. And our pets are leading the way by consuming products that are made using 100% ethically farmed produce. So they’re literally changing the world. Now isn’t that something?