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Failure to adhere to the animal freedom principles advances concern on animal welfare, particularly in pets and domesticated animals.
Today we want to illustrate the significance of the five animal freedoms, which are a major public concern to both farming and non-farming communities.
Therefore, awareness creation on Animal Welfare is essential in most remote areas, as production animals have a correlation with consumer purchase of animal products and by-products.
What is animal welfare?
Often, the phrase “farm to fork” is used to give an overview of how the animal products such as meat, eggs are raised prior to consumption by consumers.
McGlone (2001), explained that animal welfare is a complex subject matter which is categorized into animal behavior, anatomy, health status, and physiology. In contrast, the World Organization for Animal Health (2010), defines animal welfare as how an animal copes with environmental conditions in which it finds itself in.
Furthermore, a good state of welfare for an animal implies he’s healthy, comfortable, well nourished, safe, has the ability to express its innate behavior and live free from pain, fear and distress.
What are the five animal freedoms?
1.Freedom from Hunger and Thirst
Easy access to clean water and a healthy diet. On a ranch, a farmer can have water points for grazing animals.
2. Freedom from Fear and Distress
As a farmer or pet owner ensure surrounding conditions are most suitable to suppress fear, mental discomfort and distress.
3. Freedom from Discomfort
Space for confined animals must be consistent with required animal spacing per animal. Avoid, for instance, mixing animals in lactation with the rest to ensure neonates get sufficient attention from the dames (mothers).
4. Freedom from Pain, Injury and Disease
This basically entails imposed suffering on animals such as striking with painful materials. During transportation of animals from one area to the other, one ought to ensure protruding sharp metallic objects are removed in order to restrict injury. Furthermore, when animals are diseased, they ought to be given all necessary attention such as further diagnosis by a veterinarian or animal health expects and always isolate them from the rest of the herd.
5. Freedom to Express normal behavior
Features enjoyed by animals must be made available by all means possible.
Adequate space and natural grooming objects as observed in dairy animals that often enjoy the rotating grooming brushes that massage their backs. On the other hand, a farmer rearing goats, ought to have access to logs or trees that goats may climb especially in a confirmed setup. Therefore, pets such as dogs are known to play with bones, so bone like toys can be purchased for them.
Animal welfare is key to good animal production, therefore, its practice results in healthy animals. Good husbandry practices are directly proportional to international trade and policies, environmental aspects as well as food safety. Therefore, poor husbandry practices and causing unnecessary pain on animals are often discouraged.
McGlone, J. J. (2001). Farm animal welfare in the context of other society issues: toward sustainable systems. Livestock production science, 72(1-2), 75-81.