The mane event: Thousands gather to watch barbaric tradition of horses forced to fight in rural China


Fierce fight: One stallion jump to attack another in the traditional event in Rongshui County, China

With adrenaline pumping, manes whipping and a screaming crowd surrounding them, these two stallions are fighting tooth and hoof as they are pitted against each other in a traditional Chinese horse fight.
The event was arranged to celebrate the end of the autumn harvest in Rongshui County, in the province of Guangxi, and saw the locals gather to watch what animal rights campaigners have called ‘cruel’ and ‘barbaric’.
Horse fights are popular in rural China, as well as in many other parts of Asia, where the ‘sport’ goes back over 500 years.

All about the girl: In order to make the horses aggressive the farmers keep a mare in heat nearby, pitting the stallions against each other

Two stallions are led to a mare in heat, which is taken away when the stallions are aroused, leading them to fight each other.
If the stallions still refuse to fight then organisers use other methods to anger and frighten them such as whipping the creatures or firing guns in the air.

Crowdpleaser: The gathered watch intently as two young horses go head to head with many having picked a favourite ahead of the battle

Vivian Farrell, President of the International Fund For Horses, which has led campaigns to ban horse fighting, said: 'It's cruel and inhumane and I don't know why they do it.
'It is very hard to tackle. They say it's a tradition. Well, it used to be a tradition to sacrifice children, but we've moved on from that.

No sport: The event, held to celebrate the autumn harvest has been part of Chinese rural life for centuries, although human rights campaigners have branded it 'barbaric'

'Sadly it is mostly driven by the Chinese love of gambling, although people get fired up over the blood, gore and intensity of the fighting.'
A spokesperson for PETA added: 'Torturing these magnificent animals in the name of entertainment is deplorable. Tradition never justifies cruelty and has no place in a civilised society.'
Horse fighting has been outlawed almost worldwide, but it still thrives in countries like the Philippines, Indonesia, South Korea and China.

source: dailymail