Stop Forcing Terrified Sheep to Run Carrying Children at Festival

Target: Michael Hancock, Mayor of Denver, Colorado

Goal: Cancel cruel sheep races at Denver festival.

Small children and terrified sheep are being horribly exploited for a festival event known as “Mutton Bustin’.” Children from ages four to seven are placed on the backs of these animals to ride until they are thrown off, all in front of large, noisy crowds. This is dangerous to both the child riding the animal and to the sheep, whose ears or tails are grabbed by the scared children desperate for anything to hold onto during the wild ride.

This event should not even exist. It is nothing more than exploitation of children and sheep alike for the sake of cheap entertainment. The sheep sustain serious injuries from these rides, and the children run the risk of being trampled if they fall off. Furthermore, sheep are not meant to carry anything on their backs, much less a child who likely weighs as much as they do or even more.

There are far more humane activities for children to participate in at festivals, and the sheep deserve better than to be exploited as rides for the sake of entertainment. Sign this petition to demand the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo cancel the Mutton Bustin’ event permanently.


Dear Mayor Hancock,

Children and sheep alike are being exploited for the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo’s Mutton Bustin’ event. Children are placed on the backs of sheep to ride before large, noisy crowds until they fall off, which endangers the physical well-being of both. Sheep end the festival with severe injuries, while children run the risk of being trampled.

Sheep are not meant to carry other beings on their backs, especially children who weigh either as much or more than them, and small children can be easily frightened by sudden movements and loud noises. This festival is unacceptable and must be cancelled immediately, for now and for the foreseeable future. Animals are not meant to be exploited for entertainment, and children should be encouraged to participate in more humane activities than this.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Arthur Mouratidis

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  1. Animal abuse? Child abuse? Sounds like fun (SARCASM).
    Stop this sick festival!

  2. Cynthia Mattera says:

    This is cruel and sick! Please cancel this horrible event!

  3. this is sick what the hell is wrong with this state to allow this the sickos

  4. Gigi Middlebrook says:

    When are humans going to stop perpetuating this vile act as entertainment. Animals have feelings and they are not put on this earth to be entertainment for moronic humans.


  6. What a degrading event for both child and innocent animal. This must be banned. How can people think this sickening abuse is entertainment?

  7. What is wrong with these parents allowing their children to be involved in this event? It never ceases to amaze me what people will do for a buck. Stop this animal abuse now.

  8. Some people are so incredibly stupid! These people are a prime example. Stop terrorizing innocent animals! Put your brats on a merry-go-round.

  9. Animal abuse is NOT entertainment. It’s sick and anyone who participates in it is far from normal. Anyone who actually PAYS to see animals being horrifically abused is about as low as it’s possible for humans to get, and the fact that in this particular ‘event’ children are subjected to danger from being trampled on by the terrified sheep makes it all the worse. Animals AND children are being abused and exploited for profit. Shame on their parents / caregivers and shame on the people responsible for running this ‘event’. We’re not living in the dark ages and this awful festival needs to be stopped NOW.

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