Explore Animal Planet’s library of pet content for cute videos, pet health articles, our dog and cat breed selectors and much more. It’s a very touchy subject. On the one hand, you obviously don’t want to compare the journey of animals to the journey of blacks because a lot of people would be offended—and rightly so—by that comparison. On the other hand, these animal rights and animal law advocates need some sort of road map. When you look at the journey of pets, pets went from being wild animals to being co-opted by human society to being turned into property. Now some people are trying to fight to turn them into people.
There are two forms of criticism of the concept of animal welfare, coming from diametrically opposite positions. One view, held by some thinkers in history, holds that humans have no duties of any kind to animals. The other view is based on the animal rights position that animals should not be regarded as property and any use of animals by humans is unacceptable. Accordingly, some animal rights proponents argue that the perception of better animal welfare facilitates continued and increased exploitation of animals. 5 6 Some authorities therefore treat animal welfare and animal rights as two opposing positions. 7 page needed 8 9 Others see animal welfare gains as incremental steps towards animal rights.
Owning a pet while aging in place is certainly not for everyone. Ask your veterinarian, family members, and doctor if this is the right decision for you and your health. If you are healthy enough or your caregiver is willing enough to care for a pet, the rewards of pet ownership can be life-changing. An aging dog, cat, or even bird could be the best medicine and your best friend, all in one.
The coati (pronounced ko-wot-ee and sometimes referred to as a coatimundi ) is a member of the raccoon family. Originally from South America, these omnivores require a large enclosure to roam about. They are extremely active and difficult to train. They have 38 to 40 sharp teeth, forage for their food, and require a lot of mental stimulation, much like a pet monkey.
In terms of ultimate causation, pet-human relationships do resemble a type of commensulism – an interspecies relationship in which one creature benefits at no presumed cost or benefit to the member of the other species. As David MacDonald and colleagues recently pointed out in an article in Nature, this does seem to characterize some human-animal relationships, for example, our relationships with pigeons and English sparrows, and perhaps even house mice. However, in terms of proximate causation, there is a big difference (I think) between the reasons that humans form such tight bonds with the animals we decide to share our lives with and the mouse that lives behind the file cabinet in my office. And I remain intrigued why animals like chimps, and rhesus monkeys do form pet-like relationships with other species but do not seem to in nature. I suspect the answer lies in a combination of cultural transmission and a highly developed theory of mind.