The Roots for the Emerging Science of Animal Welfare in Great Britain

Abstract

Major C. W. Hume should be credited as the father of the animal welfare movement. He was instrumental in founding the University of London Animal Welfare Society (ULAWS) in 1926, which subsequently became the Universities Federation of Animal Welfare (UFAW), and he was the first, so far as I can tell, to use the expression “animal welfare,” although Henry Salt (Salt, 1894 [1980], p. 34) used the expression, “the welfare of animals.” Hume seems to have revived this expression, perhaps under the influence of Pigou and the notion of the welfare state. Hume founded ULAWS based on his belief that “animal problems must be tackled on a scientific basis with a maximum of sympathy but a minimum of sentimentality” (www.ufaw.org.uk/History). His initial work seems to have focused on finding humane ways to kill animal pests. While UFAW has avoided taking a position about the ethical acceptability of using animals in research [see Rule 3 of the UFAW Constitution as quoted in Hume (1957, p. 103): “The Federation shall not engage on either side in public controversies relating to the legitimacy of making scientific experiments on animals. It shall, however, seek the aid of biological research workers and others in fostering in laboratories in Britain and abroad consideration for the physical and mental comfort of experimental animals, avoidance of procedures which involve serious suffering, and the development of techniques calculated to reduce discomfort to a minimum”]. Hume, in several of his writings, seems to condone their use if done so humanely (see Hume, 1958 and the metaphor of sending troops into battle), and he seems to have no objection to killing vermin, again if done so humanely, and killing animals for food (Hume, 1957).

Keywords

Defend Metaphor Broom Tame 

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References

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© Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2008

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