Saturday, 26 September 2009

The Five Freedoms

The Taiwan SPCA believes that anyone responsible for the care of animals should provide them where at all possible with the Five Freedoms. These basic principles of animal care may not always be achievable, but we believe they should be aspired to. An animal recovering from life-saving or otherwise essential surgery, for example, may not be completely free of pain nor be free to behave normally. However, animal keepers, be they farmers, pet stores, animal shelters, individuals, or anyone else, should aim to provide those animals in their care with the Five Freedoms as far as is possible.

1. Freedom from Hunger and Thirst
By giving the animals ready access to fresh water and enough species-appropriate food to keep them fit and healthy

2. Freedom from Discomfort
By making sure the animals have the right kind of environment for them, including shelter and a comfortable place to sleep

3. Freedom from Pain, Injury, and Disease
By preventing the animals from getting sick or injured and getting them prompt veterinary attention if they do

4. Freedom to Behave Normally
By making sure the animals have enough space and the right environment to move naturally, and to have their natural social needs met

5. Freedom from Fear and Distress
By making sure the animals' treatment and conditions do not cause mental suffering

The Five Freedoms can be better provided for the animals if those responsible for their care practice the following:

  • Considerate and responsible planning and management
  • Skilled, knowledgeable, and conscientious animal care
  • Appropriate environment design
  • Mindful handling and transportation
  • Humane treatment at time of euthanasia or slaughter
It is a goal of the Taiwan SPCA that all animals in Taiwan be provided the Five Freedoms whenever possible and be treated and cared for accordingly.

The Taiwan SPCA main website will be providing a series of guidelines on animal care for different species, from cats, dogs, and rabbits, to lizards, spiders and goats. Please contact us ( if you are an expert on a particular species that is often cared for in Taiwan and would like to write the information sheet for that animal. 

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