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Bestiality is the activity of humans having sex with other animals (not to be confused with "dogging"[1] or "doggy-style"). Zoophilia is the name given to a paraphilia that entails sexual and/or romantic attraction to non-human animals.[2] The bestiality website BeastForum has more than a million members in different countries, most of which are from America.[3] A recent study found that most zoophiles were located in countries such as the United States, Germany, and the United Kingdom.[4]

Lack of laws against it is largely presumed to be due to it being uncommon, or a taboo subject most of society prefers to not think about. The activity is legal in Finland, Hungary, Romania, Serbia, Belarus, Iceland, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Cambodia, Thailand, Japan, Russia, Turkey, Canada,[5] and illegal in nearly all other nations. Many of these nations previously criminalized it as sodomy in ancien régime law codes (including being burned in the fire of Portuguese Inquisition in Brazil), but it was taken down once the Napoleonic Code took place without mention to such punishments for sex acts "against the order of nature", with anti-bestiality laws – now punishing its practitioners as sex offenders rather than sodomites – being gradually readopted as society took awareness of the practice as a form of animal abuse. Even in countries where bestiality is legal, offenders may still be prosecuted for a related crime, usually cruelty to animals, with the sexual nature of the cruelty often being an aggravating circumstance.

Come here, doggie woggie...[edit]

Bestiality is considered inappropriate by most people[citation NOT needed] and is illegal in many countries. However, pro-bestiality groups dispute this and often make arguments related to other things people do to animals without their consent, such as killing them and then consuming their remains, or artificially inseminating them, which could be interpenetrated interpreted by vegans and vegetarians as an example of the "two wrongs make a right" mentality. Nevertheless, the argument is more often used by pro-bestiality groups to highlight the hypocrisy of the common opinion on animals and that the typical opinions on the treatment of animals should be reevaluated.

Arguments in defense of[edit]

Defenders of bestiality will specifically split the activities into three distinct and frank categories: fucking, being fucked, and watching people doing the former two (aka zoophilia-philia). In the former, consent of the animal cannot be verified, although some may react enthusiastically or nonchalantly to the act as opposed to attempting to get away or bite your nuts off. However, in the second, it is claimed the animal is completely consenting, as you can't really force a dog to get it up and "give it some" if it'd rather chew a ball, run off, or lick its own nuts in preference.[6] In fact, most practitioners of the latter actually claim it's the animal doing the initiating most of the time, and claim that this is how they were "turned on to" the idea of zoophilia in the first place.[7] It is presumably sheer coincidence that they only perform these acts on domesticated animals and never attempt to convince a wild one to come hither. While it's hard to fault this logic and undisputed that practitioners can love their animals, there is no legal distinction between the two acts.

As for the third, it can be quite easily assumed that if an animal doesn't mind peeing/pooing in public, or care less whether it has sex in front of two people or twenty people or two hundred, it really won't have much of an opinion on whether or not you share porn of it on the internet. Then again, it's not likely to even know either.

A final set of arguments focus on the claim that humans allow or encourage worse treatment of animals on a regular basis. These arguments are less proofs that zoophilia must be moral, and more an attempt to prove any claim that zoophilia is forbidden to protect the animal in question is hypocritical (see Not as bad as). There are generally two variants of this argument:

  • Domesticated animals are often forced into mating or artificial insemination without their consent. It's not unheard of for breeders to respond to a female's resistance with mating by tying or muzzling her so she can't prevent the intended mating.[note 1] Why would forcing a mating when a female is actively resisting it to the point of needing to be constrained be acceptable, but allowing a mating that the animal is initiating and has shown all the signals their species uses to indicate receptivity of mating be unacceptable? Why does the species of the ones doing the mating change the degree of consent humans are required to receive before allowing it?
  • Killing animals for food is perfectly legal in most countries, and it is also not required by humans to survive nowadays. Killing is certainly a bigger harm to an animal than sex, as demonstrated by the fact that animals, and humans, will accept forced copulation instead of risking death. Why is it acceptable, even encouraged, for humans to definitely inflict the greater harm of death on an animal purely for their pleasure in eating meat but the mere possibility that a human may accidentally inflict the lesser harm of forced copulation for their sexual pleasure is considered utterly taboo?

Arguments against[edit]

The most obvious argument against bestiality is that an animal cannot give any kind of informed consent, unless your name happens to be Dr. Doolittle (there's no evidence of the Doctor being involved in such acts; he only wished to talk to the animals).

Due to domesticated animals being bred and trained to obey humans, they may have a harder time resisting human advances vs that of their own species. Holding human/animal matings at a higher standard of consent then animal/animal matings could be seen as analogous to how some places make it a crime for a teen of legal age of consent to have sex with a teacher, guardian, or other adult in an authority position. In both cases, the higher standard is required due to the difficulty one may have in saying no to a figure they usually are required to obey.

Performing penetrative sex on an animal may injure the animal, and it may not be able to adequately communicate that it is in pain or requires medical attention.

Sex with animals may result in serious injury to the human, as an animal is not cognizant of the limits of the human body. This culminated in a fatality in the 2005 Enumclaw horse sex caseWikipedia (see below).

Infectious diseases may also spread from the animal to the human in the process (as well as vice versa), and good luck getting an animal to wear a condom. Additionally, if you are allergic, it can kill you.[8] In some cases of zoonotic transmission, it is possible that new diseases can be transmitted into human populations.

In the media[edit]

But you screw one goat...

In the 2005 Enumclaw horse sex case,Wikipedia Kenneth Pinyan had sex with a horse and died after his colon was ruptured as a result.[9] This incident became the basis for Robinson Devor's 2007 documentary film Zoo.[10] He videotaped the incident, and the video found its way online on various shock sites.

False analogies[edit]

Bestiality was erroneously linked to homosexuality by then-Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in his dissent to Lawrence v. Texas, where (in an effort to show that homosexuality should be legislated against) he made the slippery slope argument that if homosexuality (specifically sodomy) is allowed, bestiality will be next. Aside from everything wrong with this analogy per se,[note 2] he also failed to note that bestiality was effectively legal in Texas at the time he wrote his dissent.[11] Incredibly, bestiality is still not illegal in several U.S. states, with others having only passed laws against it in recent years.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. Though breeders would tell you this is done primarily for the safety of both animals.
  2. It is, for instance, fairly unsettling that a Court Justice didn't seem to value the principle of consenting human adults as a meaningful distinction between the two.


  2. zoophilia, sexual attraction of a human toward a nonhuman animal, which may involve the experience of sexual fantasies about the animal or the pursuit of real sexual contact with it (i.e., bestiality). Sex between humans and animals is illegal in many countries. - As defined by Britannica
  3. "Animal Sexual Assault or Bestiality". 2017-10-20. 
  4. Sendler, Damian Jacob (2019). "Contemporary understanding of zoophilia — A multinational survey study". Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine (Elsevier BV) 62: 44–51. doiWikipedia:10.1016/j.jflm.2018.12.010. ISSN 1752-928X. 
  5. Bill C-84 amends Criminal Code of Canada, Royal Assent received June 21, 2019. Accessed July 7, 2019.
  6. Bizarre Magazine - Animal Sex
  10. Wikipedia: Zoo (film)
  11. Map of the Day: Bestiality-Friendly States, Mother Jones, Mac McLelland. May 19, 2010
  12. "Alaska and Florida consider bans on bestiality", Yahoo News, 21st March 2009.