Protesters delayed the start of the chuckwagon races on the opening day of the Calgary Stampede.
Vancouver Animal Defense League Activists Marley Daviduk and Samantha Baskerville locked themselves to railings in protest of the chuckwagon races.
The protest held up the races for about 20 minutes before they were led off by police.
This statement is posted on the activist’s website:
“While animal advocates generally oppose all rodeo events due to their inherent exploitation of and injuries inflicted on animals, the chuckwagon races are especially abhorrent. In the past 28 years, more than 60 horses have been horrifically killed during chuckwagon races; horses avoided death in only 7 different years; and horses have been killed the last 9 years. As well, hundreds of animals are used and often injured or killed while training for these events. Terror, death and injury for animals are intrinsic to chuckwagon races. Rodeo officials and drivers claim that new rules make the sport humane and safe, yet horses continue to suffer and die. The Vancouver Animal Defense League is calling on the event to be banned.”
Stampede spokesman Kurt Kadatz says there were two people who didn’t want the races to go ahead — and 16-thousand who did.
Earlier, some 250-thousand people lined city streets to take in the Stampede parade — and cheer the grand marshall, actor William Shatner.