Teaching Animal Law in UK universities: the benefits, challenges and opportunities for growth

Rachel Dunn*, Debbie Rook, Paula Sparks, Tiffany Mitchell

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Animal Law is an emerging field of law both in university teaching and in legal practice. However, it is still relatively unknown in UK universities with only a small percentage offering a course in the subject. Given the growing interest in environmental protection and animal welfare, it is hoped that more universities will develop modules in Animal Law. This article aims to assist in this by answering the why, how and what of Animal Law teaching in UK universities: Why teach Animal Law? How can it be taught within law programmes and what is currently happening? Animal Law is ideal for exploring the interconnectedness of law and ethics and engages students in applying philosophical theories to some of the real-life dilemmas they face. It is also an excellent subject for developing key transferable skills for law students such as critical analysis, research and mooting. The results from a small survey are presented, outlining how Animal Law is currently taught in UK universities and discussing the potential risks Animal Law modules may face due to the imminent changes in legal education. From this analysis, conclusions are drawn on the future of Animal Law teaching in the UK.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-37
Number of pages23
JournalLaw Teacher
Issue number1
Early online date8 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2023


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