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Activists prepare to 'lock horns' at rodeo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

26 October 2003

Activists prepare to 'lock horns' at rodeo

Anti-rodeo campaigners will roll into Methven township this morning escorted by 'Bucky', SAFE's 6-metre long wayward free-ranging road 'bull' to help stage an emphatic protest against animal brutality. The dressed up uni-mog will join of animal rights campaigners expected to 'lock horns' with rodeo organisers as they urge rodeo-goers to not support such a brutal form of entertainment.

"Rodeos are based on coercion, dominance and an abuse of power. Sadly it is the animals that are forced to endure undue suffering and gross mistreatment for so-called entertainment. Bucky is a friendly 'bull' intended to deliver a loud and compelling message that rodeos are based solely on animal brutality and torment. Calves, steers, horses and sheep are often forced to endure severe rough handling, electric shocks and trauma during rodeo events," says SAFE Director Anthony Terry.

"During the Waikouaiti rodeo last April, SAFE campaigners witnessed a large white stallion sustain a broken back while attempting to buck off its rider. The horse was dragged out of the arena and killed. Where else can you pay to see animals being deliberately abused in such physical and brutal ways? Rodeo animals are continually at risk of sustaining bruises, strains, ruptured ligaments, fractures or lacerations."

"Calf roping and steer wrestling are particularly abusive but despite being banned in many countries are still legal in New Zealand. SAFE has lobbied the government for the past two years seeking a ban on rodeos or at the very least cruel practices such as calf roping."

SAFE's protest will commence from 11am outside the A and P Showgrounds in Methven.

For more information contact: Anthony Terry, SAFE Director, Ph: 021 611 979

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