The Great Bull Run in Texas Was Exactly What I Expected

Posted by Alexis Braun, ALDF Litigation Clerk on February 7, 2014

I attended the Great Bull Run in Baytown, Texas, on Saturday, January 25, because I wanted to be a witness to the event and the treatment of the bulls. What I saw was exactly what I expected: people scaring animals for their own entertainment. Before each run participants are led in reciting a “Bull Honorific” which includes the phrase “we honor the bull,” but there is no honor in scaring animals for our own entertainment or sport—and certainly none in scaring animals because we desire an adrenaline rush.


Men on horseback whipped the bulls until they again began running towards the crowd of runners.

I arrived around one and purchased a spectator ticket. Around 1:30, Great Bull Run employees began to allow runners onto the track. When all who had registered for the run were on the track, the announcer read safety instructions. (I’m using the words “safety instructions” loosely here—the instructions lasted for just over a minute and included a reminder that you shouldn’t carry a firearm during the run.)

After the safety instructions, the announcer asked the runners to hold their bandanas in the air and led them in reciting the “Bull Honorific”: “Here we are the courageous few, to test ourselves and honor the bull. From those that run to those that fall, we honor the bull and salute you all.”

Next, the runners spread out along the track and sixteen bulls from one of the corrals were released. When the bulls saw the runners, they stopped running and tried to turn around to return to their corral. Two men on horseback whipped the bulls until they again began running towards the crowd of runners. Once the bulls breached the runners, the whole thing lasted less than half a minute. The bulls were put into a new corral, and the runners exited the track.

The next run I witnessed was the last of the day. It was during this run that a man later identified as 21-year-old Hugo Soto was trampled. Soto was immediately taken to an ambulance parked near the track and was treated for head injuries at a nearby hospital before being released later in the day.

Organizers of the Great Bull Run events have publicly denied that the runs are cruel, stating, “We do not torture, abuse or do anything cruel to the bulls.” The organizers believe that animal cruelty is limited to the torture and killing of animals.  However, animals experience fear, and many might say (and I would agree) that putting animals in a state of fear for our own pleasure or entertainment constitutes animal cruelty.

There are humane alternatives to events like the Great Bull Run. We do not need to be scaring animals for our own entertainment.

Great Bull Run events are scheduled to take place in ten cities in 2014. Pledge today to boycott the Great Bull Run!

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16 thoughts on “The Great Bull Run in Texas Was Exactly What I Expected

  1. Gail Hall says:

    there are plenty of dumb sports out there…this should not be one of them

  2. sophie says:

    You gotta knock this off. There is enough unkindness and evil in the world. Just stop it.

  3. Lori Hessinger Benefiel says:

    This practice need stop,all in Spain to this odd not enter twinkle unless cruelty is what’s YOU want Go beat each other’s up leave these ANIMALK ALONE

  4. Lori Hessinger Benefiel says:

    I did look up,I did make comment look up

  5. lisa de leon says:

    This is disgusting

  6. Rebecca Hansen says:

    I stopped playing Cowboys and Indians when I was 8 years old. I think it is past time these boys grow up and find something more intelligent and fullfilling to do with their time. Same goes for the people that, sadly, think this is entertainment.

  7. Rebecca Hansen says:

    Stop playing Cowboy. Your grown men (supposedly). The people watching this need to find something more intelligent and fullfilling too.

  8. Sofia says:

    “Honor the bulls”? Say what?! Yeah sure! Like you did back in the days when slavery was alright?! You were just being nice to the Afro- American people to give them a job right?! As if they were to be grateful that you whipped their asses and chained their feet?! Don’t think so. And neither will the bulls. It’s amazing what people are trying to convince themselves with. A huge stupid lie!

  9. Kerry says:

    So should we make it illegal to chase seagulls at the beach too in fear of “purposely scaring the animals?”

  10. Klara Larsen says:

    I agree with Gail Hall:” There are plenty of dumb sports out there for dumb people.”

  11. Ann Redpath says:

    Don’t do this America, we are fighting to stop this in Spain, and thank goodness they don’t do this Babaric Crap in the UK, KARMA to ALL people who make animals suffer and die, shame on you !!

  12. Uwe Essert says:

    No, No, No !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  13. David Kirk says:

    Help!!!!!! Another of these is being talked about
    at Galway Downs in Temecula Valley (Southern California) on June 21st.

    Can you help us prepare to strenuously reject this ?

  14. Gwen says:


  15. Souccar says:

    I m fighting against corridas in South France .
    In north Spain , Catalunya, this is forbidden .
    In France , Couilles Molles – tender balls – it´s impossiblet to suppress this torture..since Eugenia de Montijo. The wife of Napoléon 3 , who was Spanish, introduced this Barbary.
    My hope is to ban corridas here, And help you to suppress these shows.
    Didier from France

  16. FS says:

    A gathering of morons …. complete stupidity. Modern life presents us with such a diversity of interesting and fascinating pastimes … but this is the best these morons can come up with.

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