Critical Caselaw: Judicial Recognition of Animal Sentience
Sentience — being a living, feeling creature — forms the very core of what it means to be an animal. Indeed, the ability to feel is what distinguishes animals from objects — it makes animals ‘whos’, not ‘whats.’ While the legal system has grappled with this truism from its inception, only recently have courts begun building an internally coherent approach to ensuring that the law treats animals as feeling creatures who deserve justice.
Join Animal Legal Defense Fund Senior Staff Attorneys Jamie Contreras and David B. Rosengard as they discuss how the legal system treats animal sentience and how a trilogy of Oregon cases recognizing animal sentience points towards a new framework for animals within the law.
This webinar was prerecorded. Watch it now!
- Animals’ Legal Status
- Two Great Legal Victories for Animals in Oregon
- Update: Each Animal Counts!
- Advocating for Justice in Oregon: Neglected Horse Sues Former Owner
- How Animals Differ from Other Types of “Property” Under the Law
- Dogs Are Not Mere Property, Rules Oregon Supreme Court
- Critical Caselaw: Judicial Recognition of Animal Sentience – PPT Presentation (PDF)
- State v. Fessenden Court of Appeals (PDF)
- State v. Fessenden Supreme Court (PDF)
- State v. Newcomb Supreme Court (PDF)
- State v. Nix Supreme Court 2014 (PDF)
- State v. Nix Supreme Court (PDF)
- Judicial Recognition of Animal Sentience discussion guide (PDF)
Chelsea Handler, Ethan Hawke, Bill Maher, and Dozens of Celebrities Urge New Jersey Legislators to Ban Gestation and Veal CratesActors Paul Wesley, Christina Ricci, Stevie Van Zandt and dozens of native and resident celebrities join the Animal Legal Defense Fund in an open letter urging the state’s legislators to end the intensive confinement of mother pigs and calves in New Jersey.May 10, 2021 Press Release
The Animal Legal Defense Fund files amicus brief seeking to prevent industries from using public record exemptions to hide information from the public.April 26, 2021 Press Release
Animal Legal Defense Fund increases reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or people responsible for harassing manatee in Citrus County, FloridaApril 20, 2021 Press Release