Deadly year for horses at Calgary Stampede in Canada

Deadly year for horses at Calgary Stampede, photo: Graham McKerrell, Calgary, Stampede
Deadly year for horses at Calgary Stampede, photo: Graham McKerrell, Calgary, Stampede

Six horses died during the chuckwagon racing at the annual rodeo festival Calgary Stampede in Canada. Chuckwagon racing is a rodeo sport in which drivers in a chuckwagon led by a team of horses race around a track.

On Monday a horse fell to the track. It needed instant veterinary care and died later that night. Wednesday a horse went down in the final lap of the race due to a running injury. Stampede officials called in help. The animal was loaded onto a trailer pulled by a tractor. Later that day the horse had to be euthanized.

And on Thursday night, a horse crashed into the inner rail of a track, died instantly and injured three other horses.

On the last day of the races three horses had to be put down. The lead horse of one of the chuckwagons got a running injury, a fractured left hind cannon bone. He fell and two other horses on the wagon team sustained serious injuries too. The veterinary medical team determined there was no option for treatment. All three horses were euthanized.

The sport is very controversial as horses are frequently injured or killed. Animal welfare organization Calgary Animal Rights Effort (C.A.R.E.) demonstrated on the last day of the rodeo holding signs saying ‘Cruelty is not Family Fun’ and ‘It’s 2019 not 1919’.

Peaceful Rodeo Protest, Photo Credit: Calgary Animal Rights Effort

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