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Re: Komodo Dragon venom -



> From: Augusto Haro <augustoharo@gmail.com>
> I do not try to be agressive with
> this, but personally, I do not like
> putting on animals the label of "unloyal" or
> "untrustworthy", as if
> they were moral subjects. 
....
> these animals are solitary animals which we put in
> contact with
> us without asking, they were not made to be our pets or to
> respect our
> social conventions.

I agree, trust implies a mutual pact between two individuals, while a human may 
think such a pact exists, the animal may have no concept of this.
While there may be a legitimate bond between a human and dog (or cat), a snake 
and a stranger have no bond or pact.

A lion is not immoral because it kills a gazelle, especially since it is an 
obligate carnivore, whereas humans hunt animals often without need (I 
personally feel its fine as long as they eat the animal, and don't do it just 
for fun).
A snake isn't immoral because it eats a mouse, and in its mind there may be no 
distinction between a mouse, a cat, or a persons arm that smells like a cat...

They may have no concept of what a "pet" is, nor did they ever agree to be a 
"pet".
Rather than being a moral judgement, it is a judgment of an aspect of their 
cognitive capabilities.

As far as I'm concerned, the reason you can have snakes as pets, is because the 
snake doesn't judge you as suitable prey, and doesn't view you as a threat, so 
it permits you to hold it.

Thus if for some reason it does think you (or a part of you) is suitable prey 
(such as an appendage that smells like a cat or rodent), it will act as it does 
when it finds prey.

After all, you feed cats and dogs processed food that the animal doesn't have 
to kill.
With a snake, you put in a live rodent and let the snake do what it does best, 
no attempt is made by the human to get rid of the predatory response.
So the response is retained, and occasionally it comes out when the snake makes 
a mistake in judging what is suitable prey.