Former “Baywatch” star Pamela Anderson is calling for the end of chuckwagon races. (Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)

‘Baywatch’ star Pamela Anderson calls on Alberta premier to end chuckwagon races

More than 70 horses have died in the event since 1986

Canadian-born actress and animal rights activist Pamela Anderson has renewed her call for an end to chuckwagon races.

Anderson has sent a letter to Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and his agriculture minister urging them to stop the popular rodeo event.

“After recently moving back to my beautiful native Canada, my heart sank as I read about six horses who died in this year’s chuckwagon races at the Calgary Stampede. I urge you to direct the Stampede to ban these deadly races,” writes Anderson.

“Please use your authority to end chuckwagon racing before more horses die.”

The races are a nightly spectacle during the Stampede. Crowds watch as horse-drawn wagons accompanied by outriders thunder around a dirt track.

Anderson is an honorary director with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. About 20 of the group’s members gathered in front of the Alberta legislature last week to call for an end to the sport.

More than 70 horses have died in the event since 1986.

Anderson, best known as one of the swimsuit-clad lifeguards in “Baywatch” in the 1990s and as a model for Playboy, wrote a similar letter to another Alberta premier in 2012. She asked Alison Redford to use her influence to persuade Stampede organizers to “end these spectacles.”

Anderson said in that letter that she was ashamed the races were allowed to continue even as horses died.

The Calgary Stampede has said it will thoroughly review chuckwagon safety after the fatalities this year — the deadliest in nearly a decade.

“The Stampede’s commitment to the safety of animals and the conditions of their participation in our events is paramount to our values and brand integrity,” said a statement at the close of the rodeo earlier this month.

The Stampede tightened safety rules for the races in recent years, but Anderson says in her latest letter that it obviously wasn’t enough.

“More than a dozen horses have died since then, because these races are inherently cruel and dangerous,” she writes.

“This cruelty and indifference do not represent the Canada I know and love.”

The Agriculture Department said last week that it is confident the Stampede’s review of the latest horse deaths will address how best to bring in measures to improve safety and animal care.

READ MORE: Chuckwagon driver fined, disqualified after third horse dies at Calgary Stampede

READ MORE: Pamela Anderson adds star power to B.C. Green Party town hall

Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Manna hands out gift cards to those in need in Parksville Qualicum Beach area

Volunteers say it makes a big difference during the holidays

Business increasing in Qualicum Beach, though labour can be hard to find

Business Walk hosted by Chamber of Commerce surveyed 61 businesses

Orca Place residents take time to clean up garbage in Parksville

‘We have to change all these people’s perspectives and outlook on us’

Aid a priority for idled Vancouver Island loggers, John Horgan says

Steelworkers, Western Forest Products returning to mediation

Ravensong Waterdancers bring home provincial awards

Club invited public to watch members perform routine Dec. 15

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

VIDEO: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Five things of note from Trudeau’s mandate letters to his ministers

Some marching orders come from the Liberal Party’s campaign, while others are new additions

Most Read