Humans are the summit of creation, because God created us in His image with understanding and free will.
We can decide for or against love.
God called animals into being out of love; therefore, our choice to love God must include a choice to love animals.
God decreed that we may use animals and eat them, but that we must never exploit, torture or keep them in inhumane conditions.
- Catholic Catechism paragraphs 343-354