Wednesday, 01 June 2011 10:50
Rodeo - NSPCA Intervenes
Criminal charges in terms of the Animals Protection Act are being laid in connection with the event and incident below.
An undercover operation by Senior Inspectors of the NSPCA’s Farm Animal Unit enabled them to intervene at a rodeo after a horse “in the ring” had broken a leg. Organisers failed to step in and put the animal out of its misery but led it away with its bone protruding.
The incident occurred at the Geyerspan rodeo event in Lichtenberg in the North West Province on Saturday 28 May 2011. The rodeo rider had been thrown off the horse which had a bucking strap attached to it. This is what is used at rodeos to make the animals buck and provide the “entertainment.” The strap did not release after the rider’s fall, the horse fell as it bucked around the ring in distress, then fell and broke its leg.
Senior Inspector Peter Lombard intervened and humanely destroyed the horse.
Senior Inspector Grace de Lange appealed to the organisers to stop the proceedings after the incident but they refused and continued with a further two horse rodeos followed by bull riding.
Earlier in the day, children aged between 5 and 9 years old had competed in rodeo races on sheep and calves.
The nationally adopted policy of the SPCA movement is in opposition to rodeos as they cause distress and suffering to animals. There is no doubt that cruelty is involved. There is also the ethical issue of what message or attitude towards animals is being communicated to the younger generation if events of this kind are promoted as spectator sports. Riding or watching terrified animals is not what we consider to be Saturday fun but gross exploitation.
A callous attitude towards the animals was demonstrated. They are not disposable entertainment. All the animals at the rodeo were put at risk and exploited in the name of entertainment.
It is noted that one human fatality has already occurred at a rodeo in the North West Province. The rider was thrown and later died of internal injuries.