Rodeo-related injuries have cost $1.3 million in ACC claims over five years.

The cost has been labelled as totally unacceptable by Animal Justice League spokesman Daniel Challenger.

But New Zealand Rodeo Cowboys Association president Lyal Cocks says if the public is worried about the cost to taxpayers of treating injuries, they should stop participating in lots of sports - even jogging.

Cocks pointed to ACC's sport claims for 2016, when rugby injuries cost $78m, football $38.39m, fitness training/gym $30.5m, basketball $12.8m and jogging $8.3m.


He said of rodeo: "It is a physical sport and an active sport, but $200,000 a year over 10 years pales in significance to the multitude of other active sports we take part in."

"Maybe we should be stopping some other sports if you want to stop taxpayer money. Stop jogging. That's how silly it is getting."

Challenger said the rodeo figure came from statistics released under the Official Information Act (OIA), which were also supplied to the Herald.

He said the money could be better spent in other areas.

"This is a huge injustice to the people of Aotearoa."

Rodeo-related ACC claims last season totalled $278,245.

"This is approximately $6624.90 per person according to the document obtained from ACC," Challenger said.

Challenger requested "statistics on injuries sustained during rodeo events" between 2007 and 2017.


The total claims within the time period equate to $1,972,177 varying from $133,608 through 2007 and 2008 with 51 claims, to $338,669 in 2012-2013 when 63 claims were lodged, to 2016 to to 2017, which cost $278,245 with 42 claims.

About 500 people actively participated in rodeo, Cocks said.

"[Rodeo] is a sport that does involve physical contact but it is well organised. We make sure it is run with welfare of animals in thought.

"It's well scrutinised, we do everything we can to minimise risk to animals."

According to the Ministry for Primary Industries, owners in charge of animals, including rodeos, must comply with the Animal Welfare Act of 1999 and minimum standards for animal care and management in codes of welfare.

"This code of welfare applies to anyone responsible for the welfare of all animals being used in rodeos (although only cattle and horses may be used) and includes animals used in rodeo training, and animals used in rodeo schools. This includes New Zealand-based rodeos and visiting international rodeos."