San Dimas Rodeo October 1 & 2 2016
Animal Welfare Statement
Humane treatment of PRCA animals-both in and out of the arena-is a fact well-documented by veterinarians and research studies. PRCA rules so successfully protect animals that the American Veterinary Medical Association recognizes PRCA guidelines in it’s position statement on the welfare of animals in spectator events.
The PRCA goes to great lengths to ensure the proper care, handling, and treatment of all animals involved in PRCA-sanctioned rodeos. And, in fact, professional rodeo animals appear to enjoy their work, according to many large animal experts. Like a well-conditioned athlete, an animal can perform only if it is healthy. Any cowboy will tell you he takes home a paycheck only when the animal is in top form.
Stock contractors, the ranchers who raise rodeo stock for a living, also have an obvious financial interest in keeping the animals healthy. Simple business logic dictates that only a fool would abuse an animal that is expected to perform in the future. “The livestock is the rodeo; the rodeo is our living,” said the PRCA stock contractor, John Barnes. “We’re going to take care of it (the livestock). We always have and we always will.”
PRCA judge Duane Howard said, “Professional rodeo animals represent a major investment for stock contractors. They are given the best of care.” But many-if not most-of the PRCA’s nearly 10,000 members have more than an economic tie to animals. Nearly all have been around animals most of their lives, and they possess a high degree of respect and fondness for the livestock.
“I think they participate because they have a deep interest in animals,” Pendleton, Oregon, veterinarian Doug Corey said of the hundreds of veterinarians who compete in professional rodeo. “If there was any mistreatment going on, they wouldn’t participate.”
Anyone who attends a PRCA professional rodeo can be assured that the greatest care has been taken to prevent injury to animals or contestants. All PRCA members are bound by bylaws and rules, including a section that deals exclusively with the humane treatment of animals. Professional rodeo judges, who are charged with the enforcement of all PRCA rules, believe in these humane regulations and do not hesitate to report violations.PRCA sanctioning is an absolute guarantee that a rodeo will be produced by people who truly care about the animals.