Do you believe animals have a sense of right and wrong?
and do you believe they can choose to do something against their conscience? For example when a cat scratches the couch in front of you, knowing perfectly well what you will do, or jumps up on the table and runs away as soon as you move.
I don't think the cat knows the action is wrong as much as she knows what you will do when you catch her!
Many a times animals do such things to get your attention. They come near you with something in their mouth and start making noise with it. When they are young they have no idea about what is right or wrong, but as they grow up they get a sense of things. If they do something wrong and you don't scold them then eventually they start thinking that what they are doing is right. They don't have a consciense of there own, it forms up through our actions.
I have a pet at my place. She always plays with water bottles, if there is one just lying around she just puts it in her mouth and runs around with it. This is because when she was just a child, i never scolded her when she did the same and now for her it is just like playing with a toy.
I do. I was reared on a farm, and have always had some animal friend around me.
I have seen them grieve, beg, obey, respond to commands and cower when they have disobeyed.
Yes, I think they have a sense of right and wrong, even moral if you will. What they lack is the ability to ask us "why"?
yes, because there's a brain which can give the animal to hear any sounds, to receive a bright and to find a food from their nose. So, I think the animals have that but its a small proportion than a human.
I think the cat knows what it's doing. Not only that, some cats will mess with you to test your boundaries. Others can be dumb and won't be able to interact on any level beyond a pain/pleasure animal reflex. I guess the same could be said for humans and the degree to which all of us vary and interact with the world.
I believe that behavioral conditioning works and there's also a part about animal behavior that remains unexplained that makes us create a system of right and wrong. I do not believe in an external moral fabric in the world that all creatures participate in by virtue of being alive, including humans. But that doesn't mean it's impossible to feel inclined to be effectively altruistic or effectively tyrannical.
I hesitate to place a value system over another species but in our scope of understanding, it would appear that sometimes animals behave on a level deeper than just conditioned reflexes and exhibit pre-meditation in their actions.
I think they do. I always say if you see a bunch of animals going south for no apparent reason follow them!!!
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