Claims that some sorts of genuine moral behavior exist in nonhuman beings are increasingly common. Many people, however, remain unconvinced, despite growing acceptance of the remarkable behavioral complexity of animals and despite the admission that there may be significant differences between human and nonhuman moral behavior. This paper argues that the rejection of “moral animals” is misplaced. Yet at the same time, it attempts to show how the philosophical task of exhibiting the possibility of nonhuman moral behavior is often misguided, leaving claims about nonhuman morality unnecessarily exposed to philosophical rejection.

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