The 'post-animal' references the point in time where humans began to separate themselves from nature. Catherine Ingraham states that the three time periods responsible for this shift in ideology are the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, and contemporary time.
The Renaissance is a period where we began to blur the boundaries of humans and animals. Due to the inventions of perspective and mathematics, humans begin to sublimate the identity that mixed them up with animals1.
With the Enlightenment, humans become further separated from animals because of biological and historical definitions. Our self-consciousness and ability to organize information sets us apart from animals.
The contemporary definition of animal actually states that an animal is any living thing other than a human being. We have now completely lost our animal hood and we begin to view ourselves apart from nature and we become dissolved in functionalist ideals such as modernism.
As a result we now have the post-animal human and the post-animal animal. Post-animal human life has lost its animalness but gradually acquired a biological identity that is now given equal, or even advances, status compared to human intellectual and spiritual life. Where as the post-animal animal life has lost biological status and a complex identity, as well as in many cases, life itself. Animals, even wild animals, are universally seen by humans as valuable primarily for their potential contribution to human life2.