Human beings are the most developed social animals as per the evolution theories state. Animal rights are the reservations made for the animals for their existence on earth and the virtue of no molestation.
Animals own legal and moral rights as human beings do. Animal welfare is different from animal rights. Animal rights are about advocating on freedom for animals and an allowance made for animals to stay in their natural or original habitat. Animal welfare is about the campaigns that demand the bigger space for animals and not neglecting their basic requirements.
Moving forward, there have been various acts enacted to address animal rights supporters and actually emphasize the condition of animals and upgrade them well.
The Animal Welfare Act was signed in the United States in 1966, The Humane Slaughter Act, or the human Methods of Livestock Slaughter Act in 1958, The PACT (Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture) Act in 2019 are some relevant ones. Talking about the organization, WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) also works for animal welfare and bans cruelty towards animals and works to safeguard endangered species. There came an establishment of World Animal Protection, also known as the World Society for Protection of Animals with a vision to have a world where animals could live free without suffering.
Seeing the significant efforts made towards animal welfare and voice towards animal rights, in October 2014, 46 countries and ministries of 17 countries supported the Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare. The argument was made to have the UN working for animal rights instead of just the animal welfare. The world adapted UNEA Resolution against Illegal Trade in Wildlife in 2015 to improve the legislation, enforce the actions, and add sanctions for those doing wildlife trafficking. The declaration recognized animals as the one deserving huge respect and conservation efforts and focuses on the functioning of the World Organisation for Animal Health.
- The declaration expressed the five major freedoms which are freedom from thirst, hunger, malnutrition,
- freedom from threat, fear and distress,
- freedom from discomfort,
- freedom from injury, pain, and disease, and
- freedom to express natural patterns of behavior.
As a whole, animal welfare has reached a recognized status where using animals for experimental methods, and replacing the living bodies with non-animal techniques are implemented to safeguard the safety of animals. Thus, the effort of animal welfare activities recognised some of the major issues like animal testing, wildlife conservation, living status, and treatment but the world is yet to achieve guaranteed animal rights. “Animal rights movements” are ongoing not only in the United States but in various countries but the universal declaration is not guaranteed for animal rights.
Currently, local legislation and criminal codes in various nations maintain animal welfare. Austria, Cyprus, Croatia, Denmark has already worked for animal sentience, anti-cruelty, and animal sufferings through local legislations.