Do Animals Need More Freedom?

Animal behaviorist Marc Bekoff, left, with rescued dairy cow Bessie. Bioethicist Jessica Pierce, right, with one of her family dogs, a rescue named Bella.

(Courtesy Marc Bekoff and Sage Madden)

You’ve probably wondered what your dog or cat is thinking. Perhaps you’ve even considered the thoughts of wild animals and those in zoos. How about the feelings of the cows, chickens and pigs that eventually end up on our dinner plates? University of Colorado bioethicist Jessica Pierce and CU professor emeritus and animal behaviorist Marc Bekoff say science shows that animals have rich inner lives, but their treatment by humans doesn’t reflect that. Their new book is “The Animals’ Agenda: Freedom, Compassion, and Coexistence in the Human Age.”

Pierce and Bekoff spoke with Colorado Matters host Andrea Dukakis. Listen to their conversation and read and excerpt from the book at

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