This year at the Calgary Stampede rodeo, four horses were killed during the infamously dangerous chuckwagon racing event. One competitor was disqualified for animal cruelty. Countless animals were subjected to fear, pain, and risk of injury and death.
Rodeo is opposed by virtually all animal protection organizations in the world. Internationally respected large animal veterinarian and former rodeo participant Dr. Peggy Larson has stated, “it is impossible to create a humane rodeo.”
Yet, a Canadian rodeo hasn’t been prosecuted since 1950. Industries are left to self-police, creating and following rules that ultimately serve their own interests.
This year, for the first time, Animal Justice issued a formal, comprehensive call to Calgary Humane Society—which enforces Alberta’s animal protection laws—to act to protect animals. The law of Alberta is clear that it is illegal to cause or permit animals to unreasonably be in distress.
The call to action resonated with compassionate people from around the world, who are disturbed by the yearly animal suffering and want to see a crackdown on cruelty. Our efforts were reported by the Canadian Press (twice), the Associated Press, CTV National, the Globe and Mail, the National Post, the Toronto Star, Radio Canada International, Fox News, ABC News, Seattle Times, and more than one hundred other print, online, radio, and television publications.
Here is a selection of some of that coverage:
- Globe and Mail: “Second horse to be put down due to chuckwagon accident at Calgary Stampede”
- Fox News: “Animal rights group condemns Calgary rodeo as 2 horses are euthanized after accidents”
- MetroNews Canada: “Animal activists demand Calgary Stampede shut down rodeo after horse deaths”
- National Post: “Cowboy kicked out of Calgary stampede for aggressive horse whipping in event first”
- Radio Canada International: “The Calgary Stampede—the rodeo that makes many cringe”
- The Eric Drozd Show: “Anna Pippus, Director of Farm Animal Advocacy with Animal Justice”
- Calgary Herald, Letters to the Editor: “Strict Liability”
Animal Justice’s goal is to secure legal protection for Canada’s animals. If you’d like to help us get there, please sign up for our mailing list, share our work on social media, and consider making a donation.