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On Bestiality

A reader from Alaska sent the following e-mail, with his name, a nickname and phone number, and this is indeed a serious comment.

Dear Ma'am,

There is nothing wrong with bestiality unless the animal is being bound or forced, in relation to bondage, where the animal can not bite or flee. I can get in to an all day argument, the simple fact is bestiality is acceptable in every society and done behind closed doors no matter what laws exist. I've friends and acquaintences in various countries who are in to bestiality, who do commit acts of bestiality behind closed doors, in countries where there are laws punishing to 20 years of jail time. Are they going to pay any attention to the law? Nope. Law enforcement has better tasks than to fry someone for their sexual preference or activity.

Now, mind you there are people who are actually mentally ill in the sense they 'can't get it up' without thinking of their mate as a fantasized non-human animal, I should mention this also includes mythological animals.

All religion aside, there is nothing wrong with bestiality unless one is damaging the animal, physically or mentally, which might get difficult to describe or prove. One good acquaintance I could probably call a friend is an ethics professor who flies back and forth from Texas to China frequently argued in a group pertaining to bestiality. He was the only one against it for religious reasons.

We did have an incident in Alaska regarding bestiality in Juneau, however the incident was an off lier of typical bestiality. The guy lured[stole] a dog which did not belong to him, dog taped the dog's mouth shut, tied the dog to a tree, and committed and act of buggery. There was hemorrhaging of the eye, and the poor dog was afraid of people for a long time after the incident.

Typical bestiality does not mean people have sex with random animals, they do not go to animal brothels like one may think(happened in WA), nor do they usually allow others to have sex with the animal like swingers. People who are actors of bestiality are generally people which own the animal, take care of the animal, and don't wish to injure the animal.

Anti-bestiality arguments which I've seen have been nothing more than ridiculous arguments. One example is, "Bestiality happened and injured an animal, we need a law against this!" An argument of such magnitude is a clear case example of whim legislation. Anti-gun/gun-grabbers use this argument to attempt to push through anti-gun legislation when a horrible shooting occurs. Most gun owners respect guns, and I can say the same for people which are actors of bestiality.

Vets can detect in animals when damage has occurred from sex, they can also tell if a female dog which is still intact had sex.

I leave you with one last set of factual information. People who are breeders use racks to allow a male animal mounting the female without damage. There is no difference in this practice compared to any other bounding method. This occurs in all animal breeders: bovine, horses, dogs, cats, pigs, and other animals. Breeders force a female to have sex with a male even if the female doesn't want to have sex. There is no wrong in using a breeding rack, it does not damage an animal. Personally, I'd not condone such a method for bestiality simply because it would mean a person is using an animal for a sex toy. My internal conflict in my own statement would be, "Wouldn't it be the same for the breeder who is looking to make money off breeding animals forcefully?"

Any takers for any part of that?

15 Comments Post a comment
  1. When I first visited Sweden, I was shocked that this was even a campaign of the Djurrattsalliansen (Swedish for "Animal Rights Alliance") But apparently bestiality is [culturally] accepted enough where support forums exist for individuals who wish to get involved in it.

    As far as this comment, I find the simple act of using an animal unethical. The reasoning this person uses, "unless the animal is being bound or forced, in relation to bondage, where the animal can not bite or flee." is a typical example of A is better than B is better than C, so as long as we don't do C, it's okay. Of course the conditions described are worse, but does an animal understand what their beloved owner is doing to them?

    "unless one is damaging the animal, physically or mentally" is a condition I don't believe a human could discern. The fact is the human is still using the animal. That the animal doesn't *appear" to be hurt or *appear* to dislike the experience is irrelevant.

    March 26, 2009
  2. Dan #

    After a chuckle, I usually delete emails like that. 😀

    Humans are a huge cosmic mistake.

    March 26, 2009
  3. Mary Martin #

    Apparently the bestiality community is welfarist. When you read the comment a second time and substitute mushing or greyhound racing or horse racing, it's remarkably similar to those use and abuse enthusiasts.

    March 26, 2009
  4. There was a big deal here a couple years ago about a guy having sex with a dead deer. I don't know, maybe that's something all hunters do.

    March 26, 2009
  5. Dan #

    Yeah, welfarists shouldn't have a problem with it as long as it's 'humane' (and for example, Peter Singer doesn't have a problem with it as long as it's humane). Since, like a child, they cannot give consent, sex with nonhumans does violate their right to not be exploited.

    March 26, 2009
  6. It's not really my intention to always be the Singer defender, but if you read what he actually wrote, his suggestion is that there is no moral objection to bestiality if it is obviously mutually enjoyable. The examples he gives are when the interaction is initiated by the animal. It's hard to see how this could be considered exploitation. You can read his article here:—-.htm

    March 26, 2009
  7. Though I don't at all support or condone bestiality, I think our time is best spent elsewhere. The number of people who are interested in using animals for sexual pleasure is small in comparison to the number of people interested in using animals for another kind of pleasure: taste.

    March 26, 2009
  8. Dan #

    Singer's philosophy of preference-based act utilitarianism permits non-consentual sex with sentient nonhumans as long as it passes the preference calculus test. So, if the human enjoys it significantly more than the nonhuman dislikes it, it's permissible under Singer's theory. That is, sexploitation of sentient nonhumans can be permissible according to Singer regardless of what he has actually written about it.

    Under a rights view, such exploitation is never permissible.

    March 26, 2009
  9. Dan #

    Related to the question of mutually enjoyable human sexual activity with nonhumans is the question of mutually enjoyable sex between a 44 year-old female teacher and her 14 year-old male student. Is the teacher exploiting the student? Is the human exploiting the nonhuman? I say yes in both cases, and both are wrong because of the exploitive nature.

    March 26, 2009
  10. Joe #

    The issue of bestiality highlights the problems and contradictions of pet ownership in an uncomfortable way… when people who practice bestiality argue that sex is a natural activity for animals, it's a reminder that the vast majority of pet owners deprive their animals of one of their strongest natural desires and interests. In fact, many of them genitally mutilate their animals because it's more convenient for them (the owner)… while justifying it by telling themselves it's for the animal's own good. Of course, they are encouraged in this by the major animal welfare organizations.
    Also, as the e-mailer points out, the entire pet industry is based on human control of animal's sex lives (including much that is non-consensual). Pet owners who are against bestiality are awash in hypocrisy and/or ignorance about the system they're involved in.
    All more evidence, unfortunately, that pet ownership inherently deprives animals of their freedom and interests.

    March 27, 2009
  11. Sorry Dan, but that analogy doesn't fly. An adult relationship with a student can have all kinds of harmful psychological consequences – particularly later in life – that I don't think it's appropriate to apply to animals. That said, I hope none of my comments are interpreted as in any way to be supporting bestiality. I agree entirely with Elaine's comments above.

    March 27, 2009
  12. Dan #

    You missed my point, Scott. Perhaps saying it another way will make it clearer: in both cases, beings are not being treated with respect, but purely as objects of arousal – physical masturbation toys. That the 14 year-old may (or may not) experience psychological problems is in addition to the underlying wrong of treating beings as things.

    March 27, 2009
  13. Okay, I promise this will be my last comment on this issue.
    Dan: a dog approaches a human in an obvious "sexual advance". The human submits to this advance, and perhaps reciprocates certain advances. The exchange is clearly mutually enjoyable. They share a smoke. You are observing this (you sick bastard!). At what point do you as an animal rights abolitionist intervene on behalf of the dog?

    March 27, 2009
  14. Dan #


    The point where I would see it as wrong is when the human does something to encouage the dog's behavior or starts to use the dog for arousal. It depends on the surrounding circumstances as to when I'd intervene (verbally or physically).

    March 27, 2009
  15. It is a tough one to defend against… if man can sanction raping pigs and cows for pleasure, (a food that is grown simply for taste) – how can one condemn the practice of rape, merely for the pleasure of sexual gratification? Wouldn't it be nice if we could extinguish both abominable practices.

    And what's to come if we ever create viable trans-species hybrid embryos? Once grown to adulthood will dating service ads read: Half human/ half goat seeks attractive, fun loving half dog to share quiet walks and blah, blah….

    As for the currently enamoured one who's smitten with a horse or giraffe, will they petition the courts to sanction a marraige?

    I have no doubt such will be part of the future to come… just glad I'll be long checked out by then.

    March 28, 2009

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