Do We Really Love Our Animals Essay

Do We Really Love Our Animals? Essay, Research Paper

Do you consider yourself a pet lover? Do

you love animals in general? Can you imagine yourself as a little boy in

a trailer far away from the depths of socialization? Once upon a time there

was this boy, and this boy had a friend. No matter how hard times got he

had Bo. The boy was incredibly happy because he had always dreamed of having

a dog like that, a companion. Then your friend dies and you are left standing.

Can you imagine the pain?

Nobody likes to lose a good friend or a

pet, and the majority of the population loves animals. However, evidence

points that people don?t like animals as much as they claim to because

the majority of the population tends to over look the genocide that exists

this very instance. Gandhi once wrote, “The greatness of a nation and its

moral progress can be judged by the ways its animals are treated”(Why Vegan?

1) Gandhi brings up a good point because the issue of Animal Rights is

in fact an issue of one?s moral code. To define the morality and ethics,

this paper will refer to Ayn Rand?s definition taken from the book, The

Virtue of Selfishness. Rand describes itthis way, “It is a code of values

to guide a man?s choices and actions that determine the purpose of his

life” (Rand 13). Can the common animal lover really love animals that much

and is it in their moral code to protect the living? Maybe they would if

they were presented with the facts about vivisection and the meat industry.

The truth of the matter is, people don?t love animals as much as they claim

to, because they allow mistreatment, support companies that practice Vivisection,

and the majority of the population still eats meat.

The first form of oppression comes from

probably one of the most grotesquely cruel practices of all. Did you know

that from buying your toothpaste to buying your cosmetics, you open yourself

up for the opportunity to participate in the funding of Vivisection? PETA,

an international non profit organization designed to protect the rights

of animals has defined the term as, “Vivisection is the practice of experimenting

on live animals” (PETA 1). Let?s start with the large amount of animals

Vivisection effects. The American Anti-Vivisection Society reports that,

“Between 25 and 50 million animals are killed in American Laboratories

each Year”( Animal?s such as mice, rabbits, guinea pigs,

ferrets, cats, dogs, primates, sheep, cows, and pigs are subjected to the

effects of Vivisection. The tests are conducted by government agencies,

corporations, hospitals, the military, and chemical companies. The single

largest financier and advocate of vivisection would have to be The National

Institutes of Health(NIH). The saddest part about this is that we as taxpayers

are paying for the inhumane and cruel treatment of animals. Every time

we pay our taxes we are supporting Vivisection. The American Anti-vivisection

Society states that, “These animals can be subjected to a mydraid of painful

procedures. They are burned, starved, irradiated, shocked, mutilated, kept

in isolation, poisoned, drugged, electrocuted, and the list goes on and

on”( The tests range from a monkey?s eyes being sewn

shut for long periods of times, to a dog?s eyes getting burned by radiation,

and even so far as to subject fully conscience cats and dogs to surgery

with no anesthetic. When they are done, if they survive they are then reused

for more tests. Often times, animals such as dogs and cats are silenced

through a grotesque procedure. This process which consists of cutting the

animals vocal chords to silence the specimen. The most common type of test

used by corporations is the Draize test. The Draize test is used for testing

the safety of the corporation?s product. Sidney Gidens put it best in his

essay entitled “The Use of Animals in Science”, where Gidens says “Named

after it?s inventor, John Draize, who developed the method in 1944. The

test consists of placing rabbits in stocks that immobilize their heads

and then dropping the substance to be tested into one eye, using the other

eye as a controller”(Regan 199). These tests are often conducted over elongated

periods of time, and usually the fate of the animal is blindness, sometimes

death, and always pain. Rabbits are the most commonly used animal involved

in Draize testing because their tear ducts are too inefficient to dilute

the harmful substances being drained into their eyes.

One of the most common arguments for Vivisection

would have to be the scientific fable of the impression of helping mankind.

This point is not valid, for the fact that computers and technology have

revolutionized the field. Often times the researchers have no central data

base to store information that is not even needed so the tests are continued

over and over again. PETA states, “Computer modeling shows great promise

for testing human responses to various stimuli, and many drug and cosmetics

companies already use artificial skin to gauge the biological responses

of human skin to their products”(PETA 2). Since there are no efficient

databases to hold information gathered from these tests, it therefore must

be repeated, and this costs money as well as the lives of millions of innocent

animals. They have the capability to feel just we humans do, and we as

humans should strive to be humane. When you take a baby cow from its mother,that

mother cow is going to morn and feel sad. Even worse, if you were to perform

live surgery on that animal and drip poison into eyes all day ,well then

that animal is going to feel pain. The truth is that Vivisection wastes

money and lives that could otherwise be spared.

“The average American consumes 120 pounds

of beef each year. Our carnivorous needs must also be condoned. To meet

this enormous demand, Western Civilization has developed the ultimate killing

machine to feed the hungry masses. It?s called the slaughter-house”(Faces

of Death). I have seen a cow?s head placed inside a metal face cage. After

the cage is locked the cows throat is then cut and the animal is left to

bleed to death. This method is known as Koshering. It only makes up a small

percent of the killing of animals because it is not in high demand. The

process requires that the animal bleeds to death as a cleansing process.

“The cow chokes on his own blood. I could only feel pity” (Faces of Death).

This institutionalized form of cruelty

is also known as Factory Farming and is fueled by America?s fast food culture.

Other supporters of the consumption of meat are religion, culture, and

history. Animal agriculture is commonly being replaced by corporate farming.

“More than 90% of farmed animals in the US are raised in these intensive

confinement systems. The intensive systems are promoted and defended as

necessary for the production of low-cost meat”(Why Vegan? 2). To receive

a greater total in net production, animals are often overcrowded to the

point where the animals die. Take a look in the agriculture magazine NATIONAL

HOG FARMER. In the November 93 edition there is an article entitled “Overcrowding

Pigs Pay”. This title alone tells you how the economics involved in this

form of death, obviously out weighs the compassion one might otherwise

possess. Dr. Bernard Rollin states that is, “more economically efficient

to put a greater number of birds into each cage, accepting lower productivity

per bird but greater productivity per cage…individual animals produce,

for example gain weight, in part because they are immobile, yet suffer

because of the inability to move…Chickens are cheap, cages are expensive”(Why

Vegan? 2) Animals are usually locked up in buildings with no windows crowed

with hundreds to tens of thousands of other animals. They are also subject

to extreme weather conditions, such as extreme heat and extreme cold. Animals

have been genetically mutated to become higher yielding products. These

murders use methods like gene splicing, and selective breeding. There are

also hormones administrated as well as unnatural feeding schedules. It

is truly repugnant to think of the effects of genetic mutation on animals.

I have seen cows with breasts unnaturally huge to carry more milk. “Unnaturally

large amounts of flesh cause the animal to suffer joint inflammation and

pain that is aggravated by the concrete, slatted metal, or wire mesh floors”(Why

Vegan? 2). If that?s not enough animals are harmed a number of other ways

in slaughterhouses. Like castration, which involves cutting the animals

testicles off with a knife, with no anesthetic for economic purposes. Not

to mention the number of times a cow is branded with third degree burns.

The methods of death are largely abundant,

in fact so that one could write a book and call it the “101 Ways Animals

Die in the Slaughterhouse”. If animals don?t die from disease first, then

they have to first be transported to a corporate farm. The transportation

process is like the slave-ships from Africa, in the fact that for economical

reasons the animals are overcrowded and left to live in each other?s excrement.

There are diseases such as shipping fever that often take the lives of

many animals involved in the transportation process. The weather can be

a largely overlooked method of death for these innocent animals. “Because

chickens lose feathers in rough living conditions, transport in freezing

weather results in frozen body parts, causing severe pain”(Why Vegan? 5).

Many animals are frozen in place by their own manure. The trauma inflicted

from such joyrides to the slaughterhouse have produced “downers”. Downers

are animals that are too weak and sick to function. Even when electrocuted

and beaten, the animal refuses to go on. “Approximately 350,000 dairy cows

are downers each year”(Why Vegan? 5) Animals that are downers are often

beaten and dragged by chains still alive to the “deadpile”. Another form

of death comes from a practice called captive bolt head stunning. A device

that resembles somewhat of a pistol is aimed at the animal?s head. A metal

rod is shot into the brain, often times missing the point of unconsciousness

and therefore must be repeated. Remember that shooting a struggling animal

can be difficult and require a sufficient amount of practice. Next we come

to Electric head stunning, when an electric stunner is used to give the

animal a seizure. After the animal is shocked where it is often not unconsciousness

and still susceptible to feeling pain, the animals throat is cut. Animals

can regain consciousness after a second. Some animals even undergo the

skinning process still alive. Farming has become the number one threat

to our nation?s animals.

Some common arguments for the beef industry

would be the all classic, meat is good for you. It is supposed to contain

vitamins and minerals that are not otherwise found. However, this argument

is not true, it is a fact that vegetarians and vegans have a far healthier

diet than a meat eater. Michael Klaper, MD has stated that, “The human

body has no more need for cow?s milk than it does for dog?s milk, horses?

milk, or giraffes? milk”(Why Vegan? 9). In fact plant foods have been known

to protect the body from cancer. Animal foods like meat, can raise the

risk for cancer because of the compounds found in it. Vegetarians don?t

have to worry about heart disease associated with saturated fat from red

meat. Another common argument is that it has been going on forever, since

primitive man.

Are we not intelligent and rational beings,

aren?t we no longer primitive? What if the slaughter house had glass walls

and was connected to your favorite restaurant. Would you want to pick the

animal of your choice and then watch it be murdered? Would that hamburger

taste as good? “Slaughterhouses should be in restaurants and grocery stores.

They should have a glass wall so that people must see the animal they choose.

Look into that animals eyes and say , “OK, slit his throat” (Why Vegan?

5). Are these animals ours to enslave and murder, or are they God?s creatures?

It all boils down to oppressive power structures

and the way that they are designed. Oppressive power structures are institutions

of thought created to oppress the weaker race, ethnicity, gender, and species.

The struggle for Animal Rights and the issues involved are no different

than the struggle for women?s rights. They are both used as biological

machines, one confined to a life of reproduction and domesticity, and the

other confined to life of torture and death. People, often times, argue

that humans are smarter than animals so it doesn?t matter. If we are so

smart , than can?t we realize that Vivisection and the Meat industry are

wrong? If you enslave and mistreat your animal you?re probably going to

do the same thing to your child. It all comes back to morals. Speciesism

is the belief that our society is the only one worthy of ethical consideration.

This promotes the idea that those who are weaker and indifferent are to

be exploited because we can do so. “All arguments to prove man?s superiority

cannot shatter this hard fact: in suffering, the animals are our equals”(Why

Vegan? 14). If we allow humans to live, then why not animals?

There are a number of things one can do

to help fight against the atrocities discussed in this paper. The first

and most crucial thing that should be done is going Vegetarian. Which is

the process of not eating meat, for more information you can check out

this veggie page, Then there is the practice of

Veganism which is the denial of all animal byproducts like milk, eggs,

etc. For more information of Veganism one could consult the informative

website located at, Another thing to do would be

to check out PETA, by writing to them at People For The Ethical Treatment

of Animals, P.O. Box 42516, Washington, DC 20015. You can also check out

the American Anti-Vivisection Society web page at

For a list of animal safe products one can consult this informative website,

www.allforanimals/cruelfree.html. Without participating in the movement

for Animal Rights can we really call ourselves animal lovers? When you

consume animal products with the information given in this text can you

really say that you love your animals?

This paper was written in loving memory

of my dog BoBo, and is dedicated to the billions dead and to the progress

of the Animal Rights movement as a whole. With the facts presented in this

paper it can only be said that we as Americans obviously don?t love animals

as much as we claim too.

Works Cited

1. American Anit-Vivisection Society.

Home page. 17, Mar.2000

2. Faces of Death. Writer. Alan Black.

Dir. Conan Lecilare. Nar. Dr. Francis B. Gross Gorgon Video, 1990. 105


3. People For the Ethical Treatment of

Animals Animal Experiments. Washigton, DC.1-2

4. Rand, Ayn The Virtue of Selfisness.

USA: Penguin Books, 1964. 1.

5. Regan, Tom and Singer,Peter Animal

Rights and Human Obligations. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 1989

6. Vegan Outreach Why Vegan? Pittsburgh:



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