Four Horses Die in Opening Days of Calgary Stampede
Four Horses Have Died in the Calgary Stampede Since Friday
CTV reports that the Calgary Humane Society (CHS) is 'deeply saddened by the recent deaths at the Calgary Stampede, and have made it known that they oppose animals being used for any form of entertainment where they could be harmed or killed.
Since the Stampede began on Friday, four horses have now died; two had to be euthanized.
The first injury came on Sunday night when a horse suffered a suspected heart attack during the team cattle penning competition and fell on its rider Amy Carver. CBC reports that Carver suffered a head injury and she broke her shoulder blade. She is currently in intensive care in hospital.
On Monday morning another horse died of what is thought to be a heart attack during training and another horse had to be euthanized after it broke its back from bucking so hard after it had thrown its rider.
On Monday night a horse was racing in a chuckwagon race and it is thought it hurt its shoulder as it collapsed after the race. A vet decided to put the animal down.
"As we've stated on many, many occasions before, we're pleased to work with the Calgary Humane Society and the Alberta SPCA to look for improvements at all times," said Stampede spokesman Doug Fraser.
Peter Ficker of the Vancouver Humane Society said he was not surprised to hear of the animal deaths.
“There are animal deaths of one sort or another at the Stampede almost every year and the Stampede continues to make various excuses for these deaths, but it is part and parcel of what happens at rodeos,” said Ficker.
The Humane Society had taken out a full page ad in a Calgary newspaper asking people to boycott the event and end the animal abuse.
A group in Britain called League Against Cruel Sports even asked travel agencies not sell packages to Calgary to see the Stampede.
Organizers of the event say they are always working with animal groups to renew their practices and to make improvements and put the welfare of the animals first.
“To lose an animal regardless of the circumstance is difficult for the Calgary Stampede and the owners,” Fraser said.
Last year, four animals died during the Stampede.