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Faunalytics Animal Tracker 2019: Contradictions In Public Opinion

Only 54% of respondents agreed that farm animals deserve the same consideration as pets and other animals, and just over half (53%) agreed with the statement that 'People have an obligation to avoid harming all animals.'

LINDA TYLER: ‘The Faunalytics Animal Tracker is the only longitudinal survey dedicated to animal issues, and it monitors a range of opinions and behaviors relating to animals and animal advocacy… In the final Animal Tracker question for 2019, which is arguably the most interesting and informative, we gauge the degree to which U.S. adults agree with practices like buying fur clothing, eating animals, and classroom dissection. We also look at how much people agree that animals have thoughts and feelings, that farmed animals are similar to companion animals, and that people have an obligation to avoid harming animals. Here is the survey question:

Here is the survey question: Do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements?
Scale: Agree; Disagree; No Opinion; Do Not Know

– Some animals are capable of thinking and feeling emotions
– Buying clothes made of real animal fur is ethically acceptable
– Dissecting animals is a vital way for students to learn about anatomy
– Farm animals deserve the same consideration as pets and other animals
– People have an obligation to avoid harming all animals
– Protecting endangered or threatened species should be a global priority
– Research on animals is necessary for medical advancement
– Using animals for food is necessary for human survival

This set of statements as a whole helps us understand and describe the divide between people’s goals to treat nonhuman animals well on the one hand, and beliefs we have about “necessary” practices that harm animals on the other. For example, two statements that align with animal welfare goals met with agreement from over three-quarters of the respondents: “some animals are capable of thinking and feeling emotions” (78%) and “protecting endangered or threatened species should be a global priority” (77%). However, at least half of our respondents agreed with three statements about practices that harm animals:

– “Using animals for food is necessary for human survival” (63%)
– “Research on animals is necessary for medical advancement” (50%)
– “Dissecting animals is a vital way for students to learn about anatomy” (50%)

Another important difference revealed by this set of question is the difference between beliefs about protection and care for farm animals and for endangered species. While 77% of respondents agreed that endangered or threatened species should be protected, only 54% agreed that “Farm animals deserve the same consideration as pets and other animals.” Finally, just over half of the respondents (53%) agreed with the bottom-line statement that “People have an obligation to avoid harming all animals”.’  SOURCE…

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