Thank you for the article bringing awareness about animal fighting [“AG, Humane Society Team Up to Against Dog Fighting”, September 29]. One sister “sport” to dog and cock fighting that rarely gets reported on is the rodeo.
The rodeo is inherent animal cruelty pure and simple. Rodeos take docile animals and try to make them seem aggressive. Bulls and horses are tormented in the chutes prior to release into the ring. They are forced to wear bucking straps, and the rider uses spurs, which dig into the animals’ flesh. One rodeo “contestant” said of bucking straps and electric prods, “If you can’t use those devices, then you have no rodeo” [Pittsburgh Tribune Review, Dec. 26, 2000].
Injuries to animals, such as deep internal organ bruising, hemorrhaging, bone fractures, ripped tendons, and torn ligaments and muscles, are all expected and anticipated in the violent tradition. Investigative footage into rodeos can be viewed at rodeocruelty.com.
Rodeos stay in operation by contributions from companies such as AT&T, Coca-Cola, and Best Buy. These companies need to realize that violently roping calves and smashing them into the ground by their necks while they run up to 27 miles per hour is not entertainment.