SPCA launches site to shut down rodeo
Describing a rodeo planned as part of Montreal’s 375th anniversary celebration as “a barbaric activity,” the Montreal SPCA has launched a website aimed at marshalling public opinion against the event and persuading the city to cancel it.
Christened notorodeo.com, the website’s petition against the event received close to 2,000 signatures within hours of being unveiled Thursday morning. The online campaign is the latest salvo in a battle against the rodeo by the animal welfare group since the start of the year, after the Nomadfest, which bills itself as an “urban rodeo,” found itself transformed into a political hot potato for Montreal city hall. The event is scheduled to be held in the Old Port in August.
The SPCA contends rodeos in general subject animals to undue stress and “unnecessary suffering.” Organizers of the event have countered that the animals are well treated, such high-impact events as calf roping and chuckwagon events are not on the agenda and the rodeo will allow spectators to reconnect with the land.
Projet Montréal, the official opposition at city hall, has also expressed concerns about the rodeo, questioning the effects on the animals involved and the event’s relevance to the city’s 375th anniversary.
The outcry over the rodeo has so far caused the Loblaw food chain, a major sponsor of the city’s 375th anniversary celebrations to pull its brand from NomadFest event.