Farm animals, according to children, are entitled to the same attention as pets

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Children think farm animals deserve the same treatment as humans, according to a pioneering study, but this opinion fades at puberty.

Researchers from the universities of Exeter and Oxford interviewed a group of young British people aged nine to 11, young adults aged 18 to 21 and elderly men and women about their feelings about various animals.

Farm animals are treated the same as pets

(Photo: DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images)


Children, unlike adults, think farm animals should be treated the same as people and pets, and that eating animals is less moral than eating humans, according to ScienceDaily.

The results show that “speciesism,” a moral hierarchy in which different creatures are valued differently, is taught throughout adolescence.

According to Dr Luke McGuire of the University of Exeter, the relationship of humans with animals is filled with ethical double standards.

Some animals have cherished pets, while others are confined to factory farms for profit.

The species of the animal in question seems to have a big influence on how we judge it: dogs are our friends, pigs are our food.

According to the article, “moral acrobatics” is an essential component of the human mind: people may hold ethical beliefs that conflict with each other and use dual moral standards.

However, the roots of moral acrobatics in relation to animals are unknown, and researchers have claimed that this new study is the first to examine differences in how children and adolescents think about animal care, according to The Guardian. .

Research participants were given photographs of farm animals and pets and asked to classify them as “food”, “pet” or “object”, among others.

They were asked about how the animals were handled in the past and how they should be treated in the future.

Children did not hold all animals with the same respect. They came to the conclusion that dogs should be treated better than pigs, but pigs should not be treated any differently than humans.

Both groups of adults agreed that pigs should be treated worse than dogs, but people and dogs should be treated the same.

According to McGuire, the study showed that while young people think farm animals and humans should be treated the same, adults think pets and humans should be treated better.

He said young people consider eating animals to be less acceptable than young adults and adults.

Read more: Abandoned animals in Ukraine receive $5,000 donation from Scituate animal shelter

The development of speciesism

Moral acrobatics is a fascinating facet of the human spirit, according to Sage Journals.

People often have ethical principles that contradict each other and use moral double standards.

Humans divide the world into “us” and “them” and find it ethically acceptable to treat their own group and that of others differently.

Several countries, for example, have established legal mechanisms for fair trials of national residents while detaining immigrants without trial or release date.

The interaction of the human species with non-human creatures is one of the situations where moral acrobatics become most evident.

Pets receive the same level of attention and affection as human companions, and spending time with them can be more enjoyable than spending time with other people.

Also, many people donate to animal welfare organizations and are concerned about the dangers wild animals face.

Many people recognize, however, that some animals suffer greatly. People, for example, are quick to defend the terrible treatment that is common in industrial agriculture.

As a result, humans have strong feelings for certain animal species while supporting the mistreatment of others.

Related article: Animal Welfare Alliance calls for fixing Australia’s ‘broken’ animal welfare system

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