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Over the last several decades an alternative to current methods of stunning cattle has been developed. This system, DTS: Diathermic Syncope®, has been suggested to the Jewish and Muslim communities as a means to achieve pre-cut stunning in conformity with both religious and EU regulations without a need to resort to a derogation that permits an exemption from the EU requirement to pre-stun all animals undergoing slaughter. The developer’s contention is that the system induces fainting, and thus should be acceptable to all groups, including the kosher (Jewish) and Halal (Muslim) consumer. A review of the system based on publications and reports from the developer itself suggests that in reality the system selectively heats the brain, leading to an epileptic-type seizure with tonic-clonic phases and unconsciousness lasting several minutes. It does not induce a (benign) faint, and use of the system might cause structural brain damage. Thus, this system is unlikely to be acceptable under Jewish religious law and its animal welfare value can be questioned.
With recent increased focus on positive welfare in animal welfare science, there is demand for objective positive welfare indicators. It is unclear whether changes in body surface temperature can be used to non-invasively identify and quantify positive states in mammals. We recorded continuous measurements of tail surface temperature using infra-red thermography (IRT) and concurrent behavioural observations in male and female Wistar rats (Rattus norvegicus). If tail surface temperature can differentiate between positive and negative experiences, we expect a qualitatively different response compared to negative experiences. Three groups of rats were presented with increasing magnitudes of food rewards (neutral/none, one and three rewards). The rats were placed in an arena to which they were habituated and filmed for 30 s before and 30 min after exposure to different rewards. Tail temperature initially decreased from the pre-reward baseline and subsequently returned towards baseline temperature. The overall pattern of the change was the same as for rats subjected to negative stimuli in previous studies. Nevertheless, dynamic changes in tail temperature, specifically the rate of recovery and the behavioural response (exploration), differed between neutral and rewarded rats but failed to distinguish reward magnitude. Sex differences were found in both thermal and behavioural responses, unrelated to reward magnitudes. Female rats exhibited a greater initial response with a slower recovery than male rats, emphasising the value of using of both sexes in animal welfare research. This study improves our understanding of the effects of positive emotions induced by food reward on peripheral body temperature and behaviour.
The Five Domains model is influential in contemporary studies of animal welfare. It was originally presented as a conceptual model to understand the types of impact that procedures may impose on experimental animals. Its application has since broadened to cover a wide range of animal species and forms of animal use. However, it has also increasingly been applied as an animal welfare assessment tool, which is the focus of this paper. Several critical limitations associated with this approach have not been widely acknowledged, including that: (1) it relies upon expert or stakeholder opinion, with little transparency around the selection of these individuals; (2) quantitative scoring is typically attempted despite the absence of clear principles for aggregation of welfare measures and few attempts to account for uncertainty; (3) there have been few efforts to measure the repeatability of findings; and (4) it does not consider indirect and unintentional impacts such as those imposed on non-target animals. These deficiencies lead to concerns surrounding testability, repeatability and the potential for manipulation. We provide suggestions for refinement of how the Five Domains model is applied to partially address these limitations. We argue that the Five Domains model is useful for systematic consideration of all sources of possible welfare compromise and enhancement, but is not, in its current state, fit-for-purpose as an assessment tool. We argue for wider acknowledgment of the operational limits of using the model as an assessment tool, prioritisation of the studies needed for its validation, and encourage improvements to this approach.
There is a trend towards the adoption of cage-free housing systems in the egg industry across Asia. While cage-free housing systems can hold significant animal welfare advantages over cages, there can also be challenges in managing these systems. This exploratory study aimed to investigate the perspectives of egg producers on the main challenges and proposed solutions associated with cage-free systems in China, Indonesia, Thailand, Japan, Malaysia, and the Philippines. Cage-free producers found disease prevention and maintaining a healthy profit margin more difficult than producers from cage farms, while it was less difficult to provide environmental enrichment in cage-free systems compared to cage farms. The top challenges for cage-free producers were the cost of production, system management, disease, sales, and egg production, and the top proposed solution was to improve on-farm practices and efficiencies. Eighty-one percent of egg producers believed that more support is needed to maintain their farms than is currently available, and support was most needed in helping to improve sales, improve farm operations, lower farm costs, and provide information for producers in the form of education and training. Most responses identified the government as the stakeholder that should offer support. These results may help direct further studies in this field as well as supplying information to develop relevant initiatives with an emphasis on education and training, thereby improving animal welfare on cage-free farms and increasing the uptake of high welfare cage-free farms across the region.
Little is known about individual European countries or regional capacity to respond to animal welfare emergencies during natural disasters; therefore, it is important to establish baseline information (e.g. types of disasters, training) to enable more focused and data driven actionable support for future disasters.
A 55-question survey was distributed by email link to the 53 World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH) European Region Members plus one observer country.
Forty-nine countries (91%, n=54) responded to the survey. Fifty-one percent (25/49) indicated they incorporated animal welfare into their national disaster regulatory framework while 59% (29/49) indicated animal welfare was incorporated in the Veterinary Service National Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Plan. Thirty-nine percent (19/49) indicated they had ‘no’ or ‘limited’ legal authority to manage animal emergencies in natural disasters. Floods, forest fires, and snowstorm/extreme cold were the three most commonly reported disasters over the last 10 years with 79% (27/34) reporting Veterinary Services were involved in managing these disasters.
The survey results indicated a wide range in the capacity of WOAH European Member Countries to respond to animal welfare in natural disasters highlighting the gaps and potential areas of improvement in this arena.
Brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS) is a major welfare concern in flat-faced dog breeds. As BOAS causes respiratory difficulties and exercise intolerance, it can reduce dogs’ daily quality of life (QOL). However, evaluation of QOL in dogs is difficult, and many owners perceive BOAS signs as ‘normal’ for the breed. Accelerometers that measure frequency, duration and intensity of activities can offer an objective way of evaluating dogs’ daily activity and thereby deliver potential insights into QOL. The aim of this study was to assess habitual physical activity of 48 brachycephalic and 23 non-brachycephalic dogs using accelerometers. The accelerometers were used for one week and owners filled in a questionnaire regarding their dog’s well-being and activities. Veterinary-assessed BOAS grading for brachycephalic dogs was determined. Compared with controls, more severely affected French Bulldogs and Pugs had significantly lower total activity counts and spent less time in high activity. In Pugs, mildly affected dogs were also less active, but age can be a contributing factor here, as older age decreased activity in Pugs and controls showed a wider age range. In French Bulldogs, those dogs with no or mild signs of BOAS did not differ from controls regarding their daily activity. In conclusion, accelerometers were easy to use for objective measurement of daily activity in bracycephalic dogs, although a degree of discomfort due to the collar was reported. Results showed that BOAS signs were associated with decreased habitual physical activity. These findings emphasise the importance of actions taken to reduce incidence of BOAS in brachycephalic breeds.
More than ever the welfare of horses in equestrian sport is in the spotlight. In response to this scrutiny, one peak body, the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI) has created an Equine Ethics and Wellbeing Commission to protect their sport’s longevity. However, for welfare-based strategies to be successful, the conceptualisation of horse welfare must align across various stakeholders, including the general public. The value-laden nature of welfare makes agreement on its definition, even among scientists, difficult. Given little is known about how equestrians conceptualise horse welfare, we interviewed 19 Australian amateur equestrians using a semi-structured format. Systems thinking and the Five Domains Model provided the theoretical framework and informed our methods. Using reflexive thematic analysis, three themes were identified: (1) good horse welfare is tangible; (2) owners misinterpret unwanted horse behaviour; and (3) equestrians publicly minimise horse welfare issues but are privately concerned. Our results highlight participants’ conceptualisations of horse welfare do not align with the Five Domains Model; participants’ ideal of prioritising horse welfare does not align with their practice; and there is inconsistency between what participants share publicly and what they think privately about horse welfare. These findings can inform the development of programmes to improve ridden horse welfare throughout the horse industry. As a starting point, programmes that provide a safe space for equestrians to explore their private horse welfare concerns, and programmes that build a partnership mindset to facilitate knowledge exchange between all stakeholders are needed.
Large numbers of decapod crustacea are farmed and harvested globally for human consumption. Growing evidence for the capacity of these animals to feel pain, and therefore to suffer, has led to increased concern for their welfare, including at slaughter. In New Zealand, decapod crustacea are protected by animal welfare legislation. There is a requirement that all farmed or commercially caught animals of these species killed for commercial purposes are first rendered insensible. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of the Crustastun™, a commercially available bench-top electrical stunner, in two commercially important New Zealand crustacean species; the rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) and kōura (freshwater crayfish [Paranephrops zealandicus]). Animals were anaesthetised via intramuscular injection of lidocaine and instrumented to record the electrical activity of the nervous system, prior to being stunned according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Stunning efficacy was determined by analysing neural activity and observing behaviour post stunning. All ten P. zealandicus and three J. edwardsii appeared to be killed outright by the stun. Of the remaining J. edwardsii, six exhibited some degree of muscle tone and/or slow unco-ordinated movements of the limbs or mouthparts after stunning, although there was no recovery of spontaneous or evoked movements. One J. edwardsii was unable to be stunned successfully, likely due to its very large size (1.76 kg). None of the successfully stunned animals showed any evidence of return of awareness in the five minutes following stunning. It was concluded that the Crustastun™ is an acceptable method for killing P. zealandicus and for stunning all but the largest J. edwardsii.
Understanding the factors associated with companion animal relinquishment is key in safeguarding animal welfare and human well-being. The aims of this study were to assess the effect of demographic variables on risk of relinquishment of cats and dogs during the COVID-19 pandemic, and to report characteristics of those that relinquished a cat or dog, and the experience of said relinquishment process. A series of surveys were administered to pet owners (n = 3,945) across several countries including the UK, USA, Canada, Italy, Spain and France. In total, n = 1,324 reported having acquired their cat or dog via online means. There was no association between online source (search engines, breeder websites, rescue websites, online ad sites and social media) and relinquishment status (NCR1 [Never Considered Relinquishment] compared to CR_R [Considering Relinquishment or already Relinquished]. More participants from the USA considered or already had relinquished their cat or dog compared to the UK and Italy. Of those that have already given up their pet, 76.2% agreed that it was an emotionally difficult decision, while 100% agreed that it was, logically, the correct decision. Demographic characteristics in those that reported considering relinquishment or that had already relinquished (CR_R; n = 146) were compared to a comparison group that had never considered relinquishing their pet (NCR2; n = 193). Being a male-gendered pet-owner and a younger pet age increased the risk of relinquishment. Cats and dogs from households with children were 4.6 times more likely to consider or have already relinquished a cat or dog compared to those from households without children. Further research is needed to explore risk of relinquishment of cats and dogs when children are present in the home.
Monitoring the concentration of glucocorticoid metabolites (GCMs) in faecal samples is a non-invasive tool for physiological stress evaluation, particularly useful when studying wild species. However, both negative and positive stimuli (distress and eustress, respectively) can lead to a rise in glucocorticoids. Thus, besides validating whether GCM concentration in faeces reflects endogenous adrenal activity, we also need to identify behavioural indicators of distress to avoid misinterpretation. Therefore, we submitted four adult male spotted pacas (Cuniculus paca) to an exogenous adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) challenge-test in a Latin square design (4 × 4) to monitor changes in the GCM concentration in faeces. We also aimed to describe behaviours potentially indicative of distress. We collected excreted faeces and video-recorded the animals’ behaviours for five consecutive days, one day before and four days after application of the following four treatments: 1st control (no-handling); 2nd control (intra-muscular [IM] injection of saline solution); low-dose ACTH (IM injection of 0.18 ml ACTH); and high-dose ACTH (IM injection of 0.37 ml ACTH). There was a peak in the concentration of GCM in faeces collected 24 h after the injection of the high-dose ACTH treatment. Additionally, independent of the treatments, spotted pacas spent less time on exploration and feeding states, while spending more time in the inactive but awake (IBA) state following the treatment application (challenge day). The use of GCM concentration in faecal samples together with the behavioural changes (less exploration and feeding, and more IBA) showed to be efficient as a non-invasive tool for welfare assessment of farmed spotted paca.
Prenatal stress is the mechanism through which poor welfare of pregnant sows has detrimental effects on the health and resilience of their piglets. We compared two gestation housing systems (IMPROVED versus [conventional] CONTROL) in terms of sow stress and welfare indicators and sought to determine whether potential benefits to the sows would translate into improved offspring health. Sows were mixed into 12 stable groups (six groups per treatment, 20 sows per group) 29 days post-service in pens with free-access, full-length individual feeding/lying-stalls. CONTROL pens had fully slatted concrete floors, with two blocks of wood and two chains suspended in the group area. IMPROVED pens were the same but with rubber mats and manila rope in each stall, and straw provided in three racks in the group area. Saliva was collected from each sow on day 80 of pregnancy and analysed for haptoglobin. Hair cortisol was measured in late gestation. Sows’ right and left eyes were scored for tear staining in mid lactation and at weaning. Numbers of piglets born alive, dead, mummified, and total born were recorded. Piglets were weighed and scored for vitality and intra-uterine growth restriction (IUGR) at birth. Presence of diarrhoea in farrowing pens was scored every second day throughout the suckling period. IMPROVED sows had lower haptoglobin levels and tear-stain scores during lactation. IMPROVED sows produced fewer mummified piglets, and these had significantly lower IUGR scores, and scored lower for diarrhoea than piglets of CONTROL sows. Hence, improving sow welfare during gestation improved the health and performance of their offspring.
Commercial gestation housing systems for sows generally fail to cater fully for their needs in terms of comfort or the ability to perform highly motivated behaviours, which can lead to chronic stress and an impairment to welfare. We compared a typical gestation system (CONTROL) with an IMPROVED one as regards oral stereotypies, aggressive behaviour, skin lesions, locomotion, and tear staining. Sows were mixed into 12 stable groups (six groups per treatment, 20 sows per group), 29 days post-service in pens with free-access, full-length individual feeding/lying stalls. CONTROL pens had fully slatted concrete floors, with two blocks of wood and two chains suspended in the group area. IMPROVED pens were the same but with rubber mats and a length of manila rope in each feeding stall, and straw provided in three racks in the group area. Direct observations of oral stereotypical (30 instantaneous scans per sow per day) and aggressive (all-occurrence sampling, 3 h per sow per day) behaviours were conducted 72 h post-mixing, in mid and late gestation. Skin lesions were counted 24 h and three weeks post-mixing, and in late gestation. Sows’ locomotion (locomotory ability) was scored using a visual analogue scale in mid and late gestation. Right and left eye tear staining was scored in late gestation. Indications of better welfare in IMPROVED sows included performance of fewer oral stereotypies in mid and late gestation, and lower tear stain scores. These sows performed more aggression in late gestation, which was associated with access to enrichment, but skin lesion counts were not affected. Thus, the changes made in the IMPROVED treatment benefitted aspects of sow welfare.
In previous years interest has grown in investigating the attitudes and capabilities of veterinarians regarding the recognition, quantification and treatment of animal pain throughout different parts of the world and encompassing various species. This is the first report exploring the attitudes and self-rated abilities of veterinarians in Bosnia and Herzegovina (B&H) concerning recognition and quantification of pain in domestic animals. A study questionnaire was made available to 535 general practice veterinarians throughout B&H and 73 (14%) responded in full. The questionnaire contained polar, multiple choice, ordinal and interval scale questions and consisted of sections asking about demographic data, attitudes to pain recognition and quantification, use and availability of analgesics, estimates of pain intensity during specific surgical procedures, and the perceived need for pain assessment and continuing education programmes for analgesia. Half of the respondents considered the recognition and quantification of pain to be difficult while 89% did not make use of pain assessment scales. Of the respondents, (33/73; 45%) felt a certain level of pain to be advantageous since it reduces the activity of the healing animal, whereas 52% (38/73) did not agreed with this concept. Cost was a consideration when deciding whether or not to use analgesics for 58% (42/73) of the respondents with the most commonly used types being NSAIDs (72/73;99%) and opioids (60/73; 82%). Practitioners in B&H displayed awareness of the importance of pain assessment and management however a significant proportion were unaware of pain scales and relied upon physiological indicators of pain.
The aim of this study was to assess welfare outcomes of electrical stunning as a means of restraint in farmed grower saltwater crocodiles (Crocodylus porosus). Physical handling of a stunned, unconscious crocodile is far safer for the operator than handling a fully conscious animal. Electroencephalogram (EEG) was recorded before and after the application of electrical stunning at 50 Hz or 400 Hz using an electrical stunner applied to the cranial plate (Position 1: P1–50 Hz; n = 31, P1–400 Hz; n = 29) or immediately behind the skull (Position 2: P2–50 Hz; n = 29; P2–400 Hz; n = 30). For all electrical stuns, percentage total EEG power in a 10-s epoch decreased in the alpha and beta frequency bands; and increased in the delta and lower frequencies bands. All electrical stuns resulted in increased strength of signal, based on the quadratic mean EEG power in all frequency bands of the EEG. Greatest change in power occurred in the delta frequency band, with P1–50 Hz. This was greater than with P2–50 Hz; while decibel change using 400 Hz at either position was intermediate and not significantly different from either. Application of either electrical stunner at position 1 resulted in seizure-like activity and activation in low frequencies, but at position 2 this was not consistent across all animals. The ability of the electrical stunning equipment to consistently induce recoverable unconsciousness could be ranked in decreasing order as: P1–50 Hz > P1–400 Hz = P2–50 Hz > P2–400 Hz. Based on behavioural observations, all animals in the study appeared to stunned however evaluation of duration of EEG changes indicates that use of the electrical stunning equipment at 50 Hz would allow some margin for inaccuracies in tong placement, while achieving a consistently reliable stun.
Zoos and aquaria are paying increasing attention to environmental enrichment, which has proven an effective tool for the improvement of animal welfare. However, several ongoing issues have hampered progress in environmental enrichment research. Foremost among these is the taxonomic bias, which hinders our understanding of the value of enrichment for neglected groups, such as reptiles. In this study, we evaluated the status of environmental enrichment for reptiles in European zoos using a survey approach. A total of 121 zoos (32% response rate) completed our main survey, focusing on the use of different enrichment types for reptiles. We found significant differences in the use and/or type of enrichment between reptile groups. Tortoises (family Testudinidae) and monitor lizards (genus Varanus) were the most enriched taxa while venomous snakes were the least. The enrichment types most used across taxa were structural/habitat design and dietary. A second, more detailed, questionnaire followed, where participants were questioned about specific enrichment techniques. A total of 42 enrichment methods were reported, with two being represented across all taxa: increasing structural/thermal complexity and enrichment objects. Finally, we present information from participating zoos on enrichment goals, assessment methods, sources of information for enrichment ideas, and whether enrichment for reptiles is considered essential and/or implemented routinely. Results suggest that, although usage is widespread across European zoos, our understanding of enrichment for reptiles needs to be re-evaluated, since many of the techniques reported tread a fine line between basic husbandry and actual enrichment.
Concerns over compromised companion rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus domesticus) welfare are widespread. The welfare problems have been linked to the perception of rabbits as low investment ‘children’s pets.’ To test this hypothesis and investigate the current conditions for rabbits, data were gathered from two surveys in 2021: a nationally representative survey of Danish companion animal owners (Survey I) and a detailed social media-based survey of Danish rabbit owners (Survey II). Using logistic regression, three owner-related variables (whether a child/adult was responsible for care of the rabbit, owner-opinion on rabbits’ suitability as ‘starter pets’ and willingness-to-pay [WTP] for veterinary treatment) were employed to investigate the effect of rabbit status on owner-provision of selected husbandry conditions. The 76 (Survey I) and 4,335 (Survey II) responses suggested that most rabbits are acquired for children and are solitarily housed, and that many are kept in cages of an unsuitable size and not checked daily. Owners who perceived rabbits as ‘starter pets’ and with lower WTP were more likely to house rabbits in restricted space and to not provide continuous gnawing opportunities, ad libitum hay or routine healthcare. A child fulfilling the role of the rabbit’s main caretaker was also associated with inadequate housing type and fewer gnawing opportunities. Thus, many rabbits live in unsuitable conditions, and owners who perceive rabbits as low investment ‘children’s pets’ are more likely to not provide recommended resources. Changing owners’ perceptions of rabbits and promoting suitable husbandry through official education programmes and minimum requirements is important if there are to be improvements made to rabbit welfare.
Animal welfare encompasses all aspects of an animal's life and the interactions between animals. Consequently, welfare must be measured across a variety of factors that consider aspects such as health, behaviour and mental state. Decisions regarding housing and grazing are central to farm management. In this study, two beef cattle systems and their herds were compared from weaning to slaughter across numerous indicators. One herd (‘HH’) were continuously housed, the other (‘HG’) were housed only during winter. Inspections of animals were conducted to assess body condition, cleanliness, diarrhoea, hairlessness, nasal discharge and ocular discharge. Hair and nasal mucus samples were taken for quantification of cortisol and serotonin. Qualitative behaviour assessments (QBA) were also conducted and performance monitored. Physical health indicators were similar between herds with the exception of nasal discharge which was more prevalent in HH (P < 0.001). During winter, QBA yielded differences between herds over PC1 (arousal) (P = 0.032), but not PC2 (mood) (P = 0.139). Through summer, there was a strong difference across both PC1 (P < 0.001) and PC2 (P = 0.002), with HG exhibiting more positive behaviour. A difference was found in hair cortisol levels, with the greatest concentrations observed in HG (P = 0.011), however such a pattern was not seen for nasal mucus cortisol or for serotonin. Overall, providing summer grazing (HG) appeared to afford welfare benefits to the cattle as shown with more positive QBA assessments, but also slightly better health indicators, notwithstanding the higher levels of cortisol in that group.
Animal welfare is of increasing public interest, and the pig industry in particular is subject to much attention. The aim of this study was to identify and compare areas of animal welfare concern for commercial pigs in four different production stages: (1) gestating sows and gilts; (2) lactating sows; (3) piglets; and (4) weaner-to-finisher pigs. One welfare assessment protocol was developed for each stage, comprising of between 20 and 29 animal welfare measures including resource-, management- and animal-based ones. Twenty-one Danish farms were visited once between January 2015 and February 2016 in a cross-sectional design. Experts (n = 26; advisors, scientists and animal welfare controllers) assessed the severity of the outcome measures. This was combined with the on-farm prevalence of each measure and the outcome was used to calculate areas of concern, defined as measures where the median of all farms fell below the value defined as ‘acceptable welfare.’ Between five and seven areas of concern were identified for each production stage. With the exception of carpal lesions in piglets, all areas of concern were resource- and management-based and mainly related to housing, with inadequate available space and the floor type in the resting area being overall concerns across all production stages. This means that animal-based measures were largely unaffected by perceived deficits in resource-based measures. Great variation existed for the majority of measures identified as areas of concern, demonstrating that achieving a high welfare score is possible in the Danish system.
Animal protection laws exist at federal, provincial and municipal levels in Canada, with enforcement agencies relying largely upon citizens to report concerns. Existing research about animal protection law focuses on general approaches to enforcement and how legal terms function in the courts, but the actual work processes of animal law enforcement have received little study. We used institutional ethnography to explore the everyday work of Call Centre operators and Animal Protection Officers, and we map how this work is organised by laws and institutional polices. When receiving and responding to calls staff try to identify evidence of animal ‘distress’ as legally defined, because various interventions (writing orders, seizing animals) then become possible. However, many cases, such as animals living in deprived or isolated situations, fall short of constituting ‘distress’ and the legally mandated interventions cannot be used. Officers are also constrained by privacy and property law and by the need to record attempts to secure compliance in order to justify further action including obtaining search warrants. As a result, beneficial intervention can be delayed or prevented. Officers sometimes work strategically to advocate for animals when the available legal tools cannot resolve problems. Recommendations arising from this research include expanding the legal definition of ‘distress’ to better fit animals’ needs, developing ways for officers to intervene in a broader range of situations, and more ethnographic research on enforcement work in jurisdictions with different legal systems to better understand how animal protection work is organised and constrained by laws and policies.
Philosophers have used thought experiments to examine contentious examples of genetic modification. We hypothesised that these examples would prove useful in provoking responses from lay participants concerning technological interventions used to address welfare concerns. We asked 747 US and Canadian citizens to respond to two scenarios based on these thought experiments: genetically modifying chickens to produce blind progeny that are less likely to engage in feather-pecking (BC); and genetically modifying animals to create progeny that do not experience any subjective state (i.e. incapable of experiencing pain or fear; IA). For contrast, we assessed a third scenario that also resulted in the production of animal protein with no risk of suffering but did not involve genetically modifying animals: the development of cultured meat (CM). Participants indicated on a seven-point scale how acceptable they considered the technology (1 = very wrong to do; 7 = very right to do), and provided a text-based, open-ended explanation of their response. The creation of cultured meat was judged more acceptable than the creation of blind chickens and insentient animals. Qualitative responses indicated that some participants accepted the constraints imposed by the thought experiment, for example, by accepting perceived harms of the technology to achieve perceived benefits in reducing animal suffering. Others expressed discomfort with such trade-offs, advocating for other approaches to reducing harm. We conclude that people vary in their acceptance of interventions within existing systems, with some calling for transformational change.