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International Gay Rodeo Association
Rodeo Production Guidebook


The International Gay Rodeo Association (IGRA) hereby endorses and adopts the promotion of animal welfare and the humane, responsible treatment of animals in their housing, feeding, training, exercising, and competition.

We strive to assure that our events are purposefully tailored and executed to provide animal and human participants the safest environment possible and shall act to immediately disqualify or reprimand any contestant, official, or contracted personnel found to be treating animals in an inhumane manner.


Animal Issues For Rodeo Directors

There have been many concerns expressed by animal activists groups about the sport of rodeo. It is not uncommon for PETA (Prevention and Ethical Treatment of Animals) members to stage demonstrations at some of the larger professional rodeos. Some PETA members have occasionally been active at IGRA rodeos. They sometimes distribute erroneous information or misleading statements which may include accusations of the use of flank straps, electric prods, and spurs.

The International Gay Rodeo Association has over 75 rules and references in the rodeo rule book pertaining to the treatment and welfare of the animals used on the IGRA circuit. All IGRA member associations are required to adhere to these rules. IGRA reviews and updates these rules and regulations at our annual conventions. In addition, there is a rodeo review meeting after every IGRA sectioned rodeo. These meetings are monitored closely by the Animal Concerns committee to assure our rules and regulations are enforced.

It is important that any rodeo personnel who have been designated as press or protest group spokespersons understand the message IGRA wants to convey. In the event that your rodeo has animal protesters, it is vital that no one other than designated personal be involved in contact with such groups. It is very important for your spokesperson to know and follow these recommendations:

Additional precautionary security steps to conceder when Animal Rights Activists may be present:

In any sporting event there is always the possibility of injury. IGRA certified officials make every attempt to avoid any injury-producing situation. We are very proud of our animal injury record, which is less than one half of one percent. We have had Humane Society inspectors on site at several of our rodeos and have never received a citation or fine from them.

How does IGRA ensure healthy animals?

It is important to remember that our stock contractors have a huge monetary investment in their stock; they want to be sure their animals are not abused during competition and are well cared for after their performances.

Animal Issues Checklist:

The best recommendation for animal issues and safety is to be prepared and to have a working knowledge of IGRA's views and policies on this subject. Remember, we can't have a rodeo without livestock. Animal rights groups continue to push for legislation to restrict the use of animals in rodeos. Many states are adopting rules to oversee rodeos and in some cases, counties have banned some rodeo events. Let's ensure that we don't give ammunition to these groups to use against our rodeos.


Example Photos

Click for larger versions
Examples of images that would be poor choices:
Animal looks like it is under stress. Neck appears excessively twisted.
Examples of images that would be better choices:
Animal doesn't look stressed. Animal appears unfazed by contestant.
First posted May 16, 2015
Last update Jan 1, 2016