Introduction to wild animal suffering: A guide to the issues
Animal Ethics has just released Introduction to wild animal suffering: A guide to the issues. This is a to acquaint readers with the basic ideas about what wild animal suffering is, why it matters, what is currently being done about it, and what more can be done about it.
This is a companion text to an online video course on wild animal suffering which we are publishing over the course of several months (the first videos of which we recently released). It is divided into small units, with each chapter corresponding to one of the videos. It can be read independently of the videos because the content is the same, with minor modifications.
We have tried to present it in language that is easy to understand and a structure that is easy to follow. The whole book is over 200 pages, and includes an extensive bibliography that we hope will allow readers interested in the issue to investigate further. In particular, we hope it will be useful for those involved in animal advocacy, as it can provide them with ideas about how to incorporate advocacy for animals who live in the wild into their work. It can also benefit people who are already familiar with wild animal suffering and who want to learn more about how to get involved in work in this field. Moreover, this guide will be interesting to students and researchers in life sciences, as it examines in detail how work in this area can potentially serve to help wild animals. It’s available as a book in PDF format. You can download it here:
The book is divided into three parts. The first section describes the situation of animals living in the wild, and the ways in which they ae being helped and can be helped. It describes the many harms that they face, such as disease, parasitism, hunger, and natural disasters. It describes how their situation is far from idyllic. It then describes how there are many valuable ways of helping animals living in the wild.
The second section describes the ethics surrounding our decisions about animals. This includes what different ethical theories have to say about our treatment of animals, especially about our obligations to help animals living in the wild. It also discusses what sentience is, which animals are sentient, and why sentience is the right criterion for moral status.
The third and final section describes how academic work can help animals. It describes welfare biology, an emerging area of research that would investigate the wellbeing of animals and effective ways of helping them. It also outlines the work that could be done in this field and ways of promoting it. The section finishes by answering objections to helping animals and explaining the importance of the future.