In Animal Farm, how are the animals initially better-off after the Rebellion?

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belarafon eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The animals are, at first, very glad to be free of their human masters. They throw themselves into the work, and discover that work done for the self is much more satisfying than work done under duress. Before Napoleon starts his bid to take over the farm, the animals are happy and contented, and feel as if their entire lives have changed:

Every mouthful of food was an acute positive pleasure, now that it was truly their own food, produced by themselves and for themselves, not doled out to them by a grudging master... There was more leisure too, inexperienced though the animals were.
(Orwell, Animal Farm,

This seems to indicate that the philosophy of Old Major can be implemented without problems, and that the animals are capable of working for themselves. The pigs even work to figure out alternate methods of chores and labor, making it possible for the animals to work the farm as well, if not better, than the humans. Had the true implementation of Old Major's ideals been continued, the farm may have flourished in the intended manner.