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Billions of animals live and die under deplorable conditions in factory farms. Despite significant efforts to reduce human consumption of animal products and to encourage more humane farming practices, the number of factory-farmed animals is nevertheless on an upward trajectory. In this paper, we suggest that the high levels of suffering combined with short life-expectancies make the situation of many factory-farmed animals relevantly similar to that of palliative patients. Building on this, we discuss the radical option of seeking to reduce the suffering of factory-farmed animals through the use of drugs that alleviate pain and distress, administered under a regimen where experiential wellbeing is prioritized over the aim of avoiding drug-dependence.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Ethics

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