Upon reading the Letter to the Editor from Sue Kracker concerning rodeo animal and horses, I felt I had to respond.
I have been the cattle and ranching business for 60-plus years of my life.
We never beat any horse into submission as she states, and I never saw anyone else do that, either. They have to be disciplined like any animal, but never beaten.
I have participated in many rodeo events, and they do not squeeze a bucking horse or bull’s genitals before leaving the chute. They use a strap around the flank as an irritant, the stock will kick to try and remove it.
Today, many horses and bulls are bread and trained to buck. They are valuable animals and are treated better than some humans. When they retire they are put in a pasture and treated to a life of ease, as they have earned it.
Andy Devine on a horse for hours on end? An average horse weighs 1,000 pounds and a man 250. Unless you are riding hard by running for long periods of time, you are not going to hurt one. Andy rode mostly in parades.
Most working ranches change horses at midday. If they are unable to do that, then when they stop to rest they loosen or remove the saddle and blankets, water the animal cautiously to prevent illness, and if possible, pour cool water on their backs to remove sweat.
About a police dog forgotten in a hot car, I believe the person responsible for the dog’s death should be punished. I don’t know about police dogs being worked to death. Unfortunately, police also die too often in their line of work.
Ms. Kracker is ill-informed and should research her subjects before putting them in writing.