An introduction to ethics

Ethics of animal use by society

The use of animals in research is a matter of general public concern and forms part of wider ethical concerns relating to how we should treat animals.

Our society uses animals for many purposes – for food, as companions, in sport, for entertainment, and in research. Most of these uses involve some harms to the animals involved, and views on what should, and should not be permitted vary widely. Some consider that all of these uses of animals are unethical, that animals have rights, and that these rights should be respected by humans. At the other extreme is the view that the use of animals should be of no ethical concern.

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Updated on 26th November 2022

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