My thoughts on whether mammalian pets deserve a higher legal status

Sorry I did not post an entry last week. I spent the night studying for my history final.
Just now I found myself apologizing to my dog Crusoe for hitting her after she peed on the carpet. I don't mind slapping trees for getting in my way, but doing it to a sentiment being is rather questionable. Last Thursday I participated in a debate being the culmination of a month's progress on whether or not mammalian pets should be assigned a higher legal status than those of personal property. I was randomly assigned to the affirmative side. Although we lost due to a faulty citation, my research gave me something more important than the project itself; it taught me this: Crusoe (and her especially) has the cognitive abilities of a senior, retard, and/or a toddler, possibly beyond. I believe that consciousness can be tested in the aspects of memory; if an animal can recall past events or feelings of life, then it has the function of feeling because living in the moment is like dreaming during sleep; the average person dreams hours every night but does not remember anything at all upon waking up. If no one knows it existed, and it does not have any impact on reality beyond the volumeless realm it existed in, then does it exist at all? My undisputedly correct answer is that it does not matter. And if it doesn't matter, then what does it matter for pets without memory to be luxuriated with rights if they don't have the conscious skill to realize it in the first place? Crusoe, I know, among others, does have a memory, a not-so-amazing fact portrayed in her ability to learn tricks and perform them when there is a yummy treat at stake. So do elephants, dolphins, rats, and the average human. I think Crusoe is a sentiment being, even if not at the astute, avid level of consciousness that the average human lives at, but her characteristic of consciousness in and about its simple self should be enough to justify her immunity to *morally* unlawful harm. Subsequently, I think she does deserve a status higher than that of personal property, but on the topic of whether or not it is morally correct to punish animals for progress is subjective to personal opinion.

PS is now up and running

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