What is pain?

NZ Lifestyle Block - - Your Poultry - Source: http://avian­medicine.net/ con­tent/up­loads/2013/03/08 _pain_­man­age­ment.pdf

The In­ter­na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion for the Study of Pain (IASP) de­fines pain as an un­pleas­ant sen­sory and emo­tional ex­pe­ri­ence as­so­ci­ated with ac­tual or po­ten­tial tis­sue dam­age.

The IASP also in­cludes un­der this def­i­ni­tion an im­por­tant note: the in­abil­ity to com­mu­ni­cate in no way negates the pos­si­bil­ity that an in­di­vid­ual is ex­pe­ri­enc­ing pain and is in need of ap­pro­pri­ate painre­liev­ing treat­ment.

This is a very im­por­tant state­ment that gives cred­i­bil­ity to pain ex­pe­ri­enced by non-ver­bal pop­u­la­tions of species, in­clud­ing all an­i­mal species. We are not yet fully ca­pa­ble of recog­nis­ing when a bird is af­fected by pain, so it may be best to err on the side of over-es­ti­ma­tion and as­sume that con­di­tions that would be painful to hu­mans are also painful to poul­try.

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