It is known, since the times of Descartes, that animals are machines. Because they fulfill their instinctive programs. You can give an animal a new program, which would suppress the instinct – but this would be only another program. An animal is predictable, except for the cases of breakdown. In fact, it is predictable in cases of breakdown too, though, we have not yet learnt to practically predict it, however, the issue has been resolved in theory.
An animal does not have a free choice. In the process of observing the surrounding world, its instincts switch into play; and the one with the highest priority is carried out. The priorities are written down in advance in a separate program, and this program is a substitute of a free will. It imitates free will as well.
Animals and insects express their will, but they have no free will. In the absence of a reflecting mind, their will is only an integral result of the work of programs and instincts.
It is necessary to admit that Descartes with his saying that “animals are machines” is not quite right. All the comparisons are lame. And this one is lame at least because an animal can suffer, while a machine cannot. An animal wants to run away and get down with its animal instincts. But, unfortunately, it is unable to do that, because it is limited with its own machine origin. Animal is a machine, but it does not want to be one. It is interesting that human beings are in the same situation. An animal resists, and the more life it has, the stronger the resistance. But this is the resistance of a live animal and has a machine nature.
The machine-like live stands against the machine-like dead. A machine can be a living creature and can suffer, because it is a machine from the standpoint of a human observer.