New poll figures reveal that more than half of New Zealanders who had attended a rodeo event supported a ban on rodeo.
A recent Horizon Research poll commissioned by animal rights organisation SAFE shows that 60% of those polled who had attended a rodeo in the previous 12 months supported a ban on the use of animals in rodeo. Overall, 60% of New Zealanders agreed that rodeo causes pain and suffering to animals, and it is therefore not worth causing this just for the sake of entertainment.
SAFE spokesperson Will Appelbe says the new figures are an indictment of New Zealand’s rodeo events.
“It’s clear that when most people see rodeo cruelty firsthand they are appalled,” says Appelbe.
“Rodeo events put animals at risk of injury and death, and subject them to cruel treatment. Most Kiwis recognise this, including those who have attended a rodeo recently.”
The poll figures also showed that 69% of New Zealanders who had attended a rodeo supported a ban on the use of calves. A recently published Australian study highlighted the distress calves experience in the calf rope and tie event. The findings indicated that calves in roping events feel several negative emotions, which the authors say raises serious concerns as to the continuation of these events on welfare grounds.
“The use of calves is generally considered the worst form of rodeo cruelty and these new poll results support that. The Labour Party campaigned last election on the promise that they would ban the use of calves, as well as flank straps and several other aspects of rodeo if elected. With those plans seemingly off the table it’s become increasingly unclear what Labour’s position on rodeo actually is.”
“We’d like to see this Government make a commitment to helping animals and to follow through with it.”