Considerable improvements in animal protection have taken place throughout Europe. Scientific studies on animal health and welfare have provided a great deal of new information on the preconditions of well-being and the basic needs that are of vital importance to animals. Changes have also taken place in people's views of the dignity due to animals and their correct treatment and handling.
The rising living standards and improvements in people's well-being have also brought about demands for improving the quality of life of animals. Human beings have a moral duty to respect all animals and to consider their ability to remember and feel suffering.
The purpose of animal welfare regulations is to protect animals from suffering, hurt and pain, and to further animal health and welfare in the best possible way.