Tell B.C.’s Minister of Tourism: No funding for inhumane rodeo events

Rodeos will be eligible for recently announced B.C. government funding

The Government of British Columbia recently announced new funding for fairs, festivals, and events; but the inclusion of inhumane rodeo events is cause for concern.

Tell B.C.’s Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport that the use of taxpayer dollars to support inhumane and outdated rodeo events, which the majority of British Columbians oppose, is a step in the wrong direction.

Say no to funding rodeo cruelty

Rodeo events, such as roping, bucking, wrestling and mutton busting (children riding sheep), are inherently stressful for animals. They rely on the use of fear, discomfort and aversive stimuli (flank straps and spurs) to make the animals perform for public entertainment.

These events also put animals at unnecessary risk of injury, such as broken bones, neck injuries and internal damage.

This is fundamentally at odds with how we should be handling and treating animals. In fact, it contradicts industry requirements and best practices for the handling of farmed animals, which state that quiet handling techniques are required.

A new study looking at calf-roping adds to the growing body of evidence that animals suffer in rodeo events. It found that calves exhibited signs of distress across every phase of the calf roping event, from being chased, lassoed and caught, to when they were released.

Most communities have moved away from rodeos and toward other types of family-friendly community events. For example, the Luxton Rodeo near Victoria was cancelled in 2015 and the Abbotsford Rodeo was cancelled in 2016. The City of Vancouver and the District of North Vancouver have already implemented a ban on rodeo events.

Take Action: Email the Minister of Tourism

Tip: Personalize your message to make it more impactful! The template below is editable, so feel free to share more about why this issue is important to you and alternative community events that you’d prefer to see supported through government funding.

Live outside of Canada? You can share your concerns, as a tourist, with the Minister at:

Video from B.C. rodeos

Video footage from recent local rodeos reveals recurring welfare issues, including animals being roughly handled and deliberately agitated into fleeing and bucking.

Photos from B.C. rodeos

Read & share: It’s time to stop using taxpayer money to fund inhumane events

“With a myriad of positive events that could use funds to reinvigorate the tourism sector and celebrate culture, community, and compassion, it would be incredibly disappointing for the Province to sink funding into a cruel and outdated practice that, as the majority of British Columbians agree, is better left in the past.”

Read the VHS’s opinion piece published in the Daily Hive Vancouver.