Does the prohibition on causing tzar baalei chayim (paining animals) preclude acts which only cause an animal mental anguish, such as scaring them, or it is limited to physical pain?

  • why should it not include mental anguish? isnt that also pain. could even more painful than physical pain sometimes.
    – ray
    Feb 24, 2014 at 18:24
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    See commentators etc. on Shiluach haKen...
    – Ariel K
    Feb 24, 2014 at 21:34
  • in the yad efraim below it says "ein lecha tzaar baal chayim gadol mize" - no greater paining animals than this, so it seems mental anguish is even worse than physical anguish
    – ray
    Feb 26, 2014 at 11:55

1 Answer 1


Yad Efraim Yoreh Deah 36:14 discusses the trauma of chickens seeing other chickens slaughtered. He says that this causes the chickens much distress and they become treifos from their lungs drying out from fear. He also says that in slaughter houses, animals should not be slaughtered in plain view of other animals because it is Tzaar Baalei Chaim. He concludes that Tzaar Baalei Chaim includes causing fear and scaring animals.

  • Would this include taunting an animal with food to have it perform tricks?
    – Lee
    Aug 4, 2017 at 9:39

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