Killing an animal in order to eat is not in any way immoral or wrong, however cruelty towards the animal while it is alive is immoral and unacceptable. After the flood God allowed man to kill animals for sustenance, not for torture. Animals, unlike man, have no soul which means their lives do not carry on after death. Animals have a body and instinct, much like a computer or robot is programmed to perform specific tasks, but no soul which sets humans apart from the rest of the animal kingdom. The argument may be made that animals can communicate which means that they do have a soul, like humans. Communication is different from speaking, a monkey can sign for food, a dog can let you know it need so use the restroom and so on. This takes repetitious training and does not denote any kind of soul but rather simplistic thinking as a monkey can not develop these kind of skills on his own, let alone form any kind of complex sentence that would denote any kind of actual feeling connected to that word, as far as love, happiness, or even sadness. Animals cannot connect words to feelings, apart from a want or desire for something.
This does not mean animals cannot feel any kind of pain, on the contrary, animals are quite capable of feeling pain and therefore it is our responsibility to make sure that they do not suffer, especially on account of our gluttony. God gave man dominion, to authoritarian control, over the earth and everything in it. We rule over the earth and creation on behalf of God, not as bloodthirsty tyrants, and this is exactly what we are doing. Animals have become nothing but a commodity, an object, a source of food and not a living breathing creature capable of experiencing pain. Not as a beautiful creation of God, but as something to be used, abused, and profited from. What does that say about us, that animals treat us more humane than we treat them?
Countless animals are tortured and killed, not only for food, but in the name of science, for the greater good of mankind. This really is a very slippery slope of “the end justifies the means”. Since animals mean little science deems them fit for study through means of torture, to better mankind. Smash a monkeys head in to understand brain trauma in humans, but what is stopping them from experimenting on other humans? Now, when I said this what kind of person did you imagine? I would like to think that most of us immediately thought of, what we view as, the typical human being. Of course not one of use would ever allow a fellow human being to be subjected to such tortures, no matter how it may benefit mankind. However, science would likely use an outcast of society, someone easy to demonize, perhaps a convict, maybe even a prostitute, and it is highly likely that even homeless could be used. All easy targets, none of them would be missed, and it is easy for all of us to write them off as being non-human, beastly, waste. Much like we already feel towards animals.
I find the inhumane a cruel treatment of animals to be unacceptable and quite disturbing. We can peer into the soul of an individual who has little regard for the living breathing creation of God and see little or no compassion. God allowed us to kill and eat animals, and this should not be something that we delight in doing, killing, but do in remembrance of the sin that caused this. Each day I find it more and more difficult to consume the flesh of the animal, even though I do not kill it, nor see it killed, or even abused. The mere thought that I have no idea how this animal died or how this animal was treated, turns my stomach.