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Animal “Euthanasia” Is Often Slaughter: Consider Kangaroos

MARC BEKOFF: ‘Euthanasia is defined as “the practice of intentionally ending a life in order to relieve pain and suffering.” All of the various definitions of “euthanasia” cash it out as a form of mercy killing that is done in the animal’s best interests. Nonetheless, some researchers and others continue to misuse the word, often as a way to sanitize what they’re really doing to otherwise healthy animals, namely, heartlessly slaughtering them. In Australia, for example, the commercial slaughter of millions of adult kangaroos for food results in countless dependent youngsters, also called joeys, left to suffer and die because their mothers have been, or will be, killed…

As I was writing up a talk for upcoming meetings on Compassionate Conservation I came across a report called “Improving the humaneness of commercial kangaroo harvesting” in which the researchers also tried to sanitize what they were doing when looking for humane ways to kill healthy kangaroo joeys, also called pouch-young. (The word “harvesting” also means killing)… All of their efforts are performed under the guise of being concerned with animal welfare. Clearly, from the animals’ point of view, “good welfare” can’t be “good enough.” Even the “most humane” ways of slaughtering the youngsters wasn’t pain-free or especially humane… They were killing healthy babies in a variety of ways, many known to cause pain and suffering…

As they heartlessly discuss their results, as if kangaroos are merely unfeeling and disposable objects, the authors also write about other studies in which individuals of a number of different species were subjected to various forms of brutal killing to see which was the “most humane.” I wonder if they would also do this to dogs, with whom kangaroos and other mammals share the same neural substrates for emotions. This sort of “research” needs to be brought to an end… As if this sort of “research” isn’t heinous enough, I just learned that Australia now plans to kill two million feral cats’. SOURCE…

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