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Animals in entertainment

  1. Animals Used in Entertainment or Displays
  2. Animals Which are Wild by Nature Used in Entertainment
  3. Rodeos
  4. Wild Animals in Captivity
  5. Blood Spectacles
  6. Greyhound Racing
  7. Horse Racing
  8. Horse Shows and Eventing
  9. Bloodless Bullfighting
  10. Other

1. Animals Used in Entertainment or Displays

CFHS opposes the use of animals in all forms of entertainment or displays which may cause them to suffer.

CFHS believes, in particular, that animals performing or on display in a travelling environment will be deprived of a normal existence and may lack proper attention to their physical, social, and psychological needs.

CFHS contends that the following are detrimental to the well-being of animals:

  • travel or confinement that impairs the animals’ physical, psychological and social needs.
  • the use of abusive, cruel or stressful training techniques or devices or agents employed to cause the animals to perform.
  • close confinement, the lack of exercise and other physical requirements, the inability to express natural behaviours and lack of appropriate socialization.
  • the administration of any drug for non-therapeutic purposes in order to alter the performance or behaviour of the animals.

July 1995

2. Animals Which are Wild by Nature Used in Entertainment

CFHS opposes the use of animals, wild by nature, in all forms of entertainment.

CFHS believes that wild animals maintained in a travelling environment for entertainment purposes will be deprived of a normal existence and will lack proper attention to their physical, social and psychological needs.

CFHS opposes:

  • the further capture and captive breeding of wild animals for entertainment purposes.
  • the use of abusive, cruel or stressful training techniques or devices or agents employed to cause these animals to perform.
  • travel for entertainment purposes because it fails to provide for the animals’ physical, psychological and social needs.
  • close confinement, the lack of exercise and other physical requirements, the inability to express natural behaviours and lack of appropriate socialization.

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3. Rodeos

3.1 CFHS is opposed in principle to rodeo and is working towards the ultimate abolition of this activity.

3.2 CFHS recognizes that rodeo continues to be a regional tradition in some parts of Canada.

3.3 CFHS believes that it can best reduce and end suffering of animals used in rodeo by targeting specific rodeo events for elimination.

3.4 CFHS will actively pursue every means in its power to reduce and end suffering of animals used in rodeo events:

  • by opposing additions to existing rodeos of new events that are likely to cause pain, suffering or injury to animals,
  • by opposing further proliferation of rodeos and rodeo events into regions where they are presently not held and/or where they are not a tradition,
  • by opposing those events that involve the throwing with ropes of any animal,
  • by opposing events that involve wrestling or fighting with any animal,
  • by opposing the use on any rodeo animal of any device likely to cause pain, suffering, or injury, and that is solely employed to alter the animal’s natural behaviour or performance,
  • by opposing the continuance to completion of any event once an animal has been injured in the course of the event (e.g., animals injured during chuckwagon races).

4. Wild Animals in Captivity

CFHS supports only those zoos or wildlife enclosures which adhere to the principle that the needs and welfare of the animals are of primary importance, must take precedence over consideration for human visitors and should not be compromised by economic factors. Housing and management must meet the health, emotional and behavioural needs of each species of animal. Therefore all animals must be provided with living areas of exceptionally high quality, which closely resemble their natural habitat, where they may live reasonably natural lives.

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5. Blood Spectacles

5.1 CFHS is opposed to the use of animals in blood sports such as bullfighting, dogfighting, cockfighting and similar spectacles.

5.2 CFHS is opposed to any hunting of animals with the help of hounds or dogs to harry the animals. This is taken to include fox hunting, coon hunting, deer hunting, and the hunting of hares and rabbits.

6. Greyhound Racing

CFHS deplores the training of greyhound racing dogs by the use of live rabbit lures, negative reinforcement procedures, and the destruction of greyhounds which are not potentially successful competitors.

7. Horse Racing

7.1 CFHS is opposed to drugs being administered with a view to altering the performance of a horse.

7.2 CFHS is opposed to any races where unreasonable or excessive demands upon the horse cause distress or suffering, e.g., immature or unfit animals.

7.3 CFHS is opposed to excessive use of the whip.

8. Horse Shows and Eventing

CFHS is concerned that competitive horsemanship events, where success can lead to money or fame, may often be grossly overtaxing to horses.

CFHS is opposed to the following:

  • The use of training methods which cause distress or suffering.
  • The use of drugs to alter a horse’s performance, or to enable it to compete.
  • The inclusion in a competition of obstacles that are of unreasonable difficulty.
  • The use of any equipment, such as whips or spurs, in such a manner as to cause distress or suffering.

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9. Bloodless Bullfighting

Position Statement

CFHS is opposed to bloodless bullfighting. CFHS believes that bloodless bullfighting encourages disrespect for animals, and may be detrimental to the physical and psychological well-being of the animals.

Definition

Bloodless or Portuguese-style bullfighting involves the use of darts with blunt points covered with velcro that adhere to a mat fitted on the animal’s back.

Bloodless bullfighting is not intended to involve killing or the deliberate infliction of serious physical harm to the animals. However, the bull is prepared for the exhibition by using techniques such as harassment or an electric prod to provoke the animal. In some cases horses are used in the bullfight.

Background/Rationale

Bloodless bullfighting is an event common in Portugal and has been introduced to Canada.

Bloodless bullfighting involves taunting and harassing the animals, causing them psychological stress and possible physical harm. Bloodless bullfighting may subject the animals to distress, harassment and pain, both in training and in the actual fight, to encourage a higher level of aggression in the bulls.

May 1996

10. Other

Events such as animal exhibitions and publicity stunts are susceptible to inhumane treatment of the animals involved; the sponsors, participants, and organizers must assume the responsibility to ensure humane treatment of the animals.

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