The “Great California Bull Run” has officially been cancelled! The Los Angeles County Fire Department refused to grant a permit for the event, citing violations of public safety standards.

This is part of a larger series of events, with two previous Great Bull Runs in California being cancelled before hand. The cruelty and riskiness of these events lead to a lawsuit by PETA and the Animal Legal Defense Fund against the Great Bull Run and the Lone Star Rodeo Company in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The lawsuit is aimed at ending bull runs in California and is the first case to be filed to stop these events.


These events are violations California’s anti-cruelty and Unfair Competition laws as the organizers of the events send over 30 panicking bulls, each of them weighing in at almost a ton, down a narrow track. The bulls can run up to 35 miles an hour, and yet someone thought it would be a good idea to have human runners ahead of them. But wisely, the L.A. County Fire Department has refused to grant this event any permits.

As the Animal Legal Defense Fund noted in their press release on the issue, “Veterinary experts have concluded that the event also causes unnecessary suffering and stress to the animals.” And Dr. Holly Cheever, veterinarian and vice president of the New York State Humane Association noted, “As a bovine veterinarian, I can confirm that this event is extremely stressful for the bulls and presents substantial risk of injury to them, as well as an enormous public safety risk to the humans participating.” 

This is cancellation of the Great Bull Run is good news for more than just the bulls. On July 26th, one Great Bull Run went ahead as scheduled despite protests at the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Northern California. The result was one runner hospitalized with a concussion from being trampled by the bulls.

Join us in applauding the L.A. County Fire Department for rejecting permits for this utterly ridiculous and dangerous event. As Stephen Wells, executive director of the Animal Legal Defense Fund said, “Traumatized animals, hospitalized runners, and violations of public safety make this event a disgrace for any jurisdiction.” We’re glad it’s been stopped!


Image source: Clinton and Charles Robertson/Flickr