The problem of animal suffering is the atheistic argument that an all-knowing, all-powerful, and all-good God would not use millions of years of animal suffering, disease, and death to form a planet for human beings. This argument has not received as much attention in the philosophical literature as other forms of the problem of evil, yet it has been increasingly touted by atheists since Charles Darwin. While several theists have attempted to provide answers to the problem, they disagree with each other as to which answer is correct. Also, some of these theists have given in to the problem and believe it entails that God is limited in certain ways. B. Kyle Keltz seeks to provide a classical answer to the problem of animal suffering inspired by the medieval philosopher/theologian Thomas Aquinas. In doing so, Keltz not only utilizes the wisdom of Aquinas, but also contemporary insights into non-human animal minds from contemporary philosophy and science. Keltz provides a compelling neo-Thomistic answer to the problem of animal suffering and explains why the classical God of theism would create a world that includes animal death.
B. Kyle Keltz is assistant professor of English and philosophy at South Plains College, where he teaches philosophy, world religions, and English composition. He has articles published in The Heythrop Journal, The Journal of Value Inquiry, New Blackfriars, Nova et Vetera, and Sophia. He lives in Lubbock, Texas, with his wife and two sons.