Agricultural Animal Welfare

Wendy J. Underwood, John J. McGlone, Janice Swanson, Kenneth A. Anderson, Raymond Anthony

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This chapter discusses the history of farm animal welfare, definitions of farm animal welfare, assessments of welfare for farmed species, and identification and assessment of pain in farmed animals. Subsequent chapter sections are devoted to individual domestic species including ruminants, both large and small, swine, and poultry. Although the horse is not considered a "farmed species" in the United States, a discussion of the welfare of the horse is also included. And finally, since research animal welfare is of clear concern, the chapter ends with a discussion of some common issues associated with research farmed species.The history of farm animal welfare diverges significantly in several ways from the history of animal welfare in general. These differences were a result of the industrial revolution and the economies of food production. Contemporary changes in social ethic, however, have affected what and how we think about the welfare of farmed animals and the horse. The assessment of farmed animal welfare depends upon the definition of welfare, for which no consensus definition exits. Nevertheless, the section on the assessment of farm animal welfare describes current methods used for assessing farmed animal welfare on both an individual and a group or farm basis. Since pain is directly associated with the concept of welfare, there is also a discussion on the identification and the assessment of pain per species. Significant differences exist not only within species but also within breeds and among individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLaboratory Animal Welfare
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages46
ISBN (Print)9780123851031
StatePublished - Sep 2013


  • Agricultural animal
  • Assessment
  • Cattle, sheep, goats, swine, poultry, horse, equine
  • Farm animal
  • History, regulations, welfare
  • IACUC and farm animals
  • Pain
  • Welfare


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