Bucking horse dies at Dixie Roundup

Jeff Flitton, general manager of Bar T Rodeo, poses with a bucking horse at the Dixie Sunbowl, St. George, Utah, Sept. 13, 2014 | Photo by T.S. Romney, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – During Thursday’s opening night of the Dixie Roundup Rodeo, a bucking horse collapsed during the bucking bronco competition in front of a packed Sunbowl stadium.

Picture of a bucking horse, Dixie Rodeo at the Sunbowl. St. George, Utah. Sept 13, 2014 | Photo by T.S Romney St. George News
A bucking horse at the Dixie Roundup, St. George, Utah, Sept. 13, 2014 | Photo by T.S. Romney, St. George News

“We believe he died of a heart attack,” Jeff Flitton, general manager of Bar T Rodeo, the rodeo production and stock company that provides livestock for the Dixie Roundup, said. “There was no signs that anything was wrong. One minute he was performing, the next he was gone.”

Flitton said the horse, a 22-year-old bucking horse, was bred to buck on the Bar T Rodeo ranch in Chester, Utah, and had been with Bar T Rodeo since it was born.

“We have around 250 horses on the ranch up there,” Flitton said.

Flitton, who has been involved in rodeo for nearly 40 years, said there are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to bucking horses. They are not mistreated nor are they wild and aggressive, he said; it is in their nature and training to buck.

“The bucking horse we lost Thursday was a member of the family,” Flitton said. “We lost one of our own.”

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47 Comments

  • M and M cookies September 13, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    Ou don,t think it died because of the heat, seeing the place as no coverd area, that’s why they should move it to the fairgrounds next year..

    • Baptize September 14, 2014 at 8:32 am

      Keep it by the temple so they can rush it there and perform a proxy baptism

  • Mark September 13, 2014 at 7:35 pm

    Animal abuse!

  • Riverat September 13, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    Good thing there are 2 Jak in da Box’s in town.

  • San September 13, 2014 at 9:30 pm

    How the …* is this not animal abuse? Because the good ole boys enjoy dominating a docile animal? Because no one has the guts to shut it down? This was animal murder…nice job.
    Ed. ellipsis …*

  • mark September 13, 2014 at 9:36 pm

    U stupid

    • Zonkerb September 16, 2014 at 6:07 am

      Mark. wow your really intelligent lmao.!

  • Fred September 13, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    Someone phone the people who protested the death of the colicky carriage horse in Salt Lake. I’m sure they’ll want to come make heroic animal speeches.

  • Zonkerb September 13, 2014 at 10:47 pm

    Yeah way to go all you people that buy tickets for the rodeo are no better than the people that MURDER animals in the name of entertainment

    • stop complaining September 13, 2014 at 11:41 pm

      umm you are a freaking hypocrite dud get the stick out of your butt

      • Zonkerb September 16, 2014 at 6:05 am

        Learn how to spell dumb…* its dude not dud.. idiot.!
        Ed. ellipsis: …*

  • not happy September 13, 2014 at 11:40 pm

    you know all of you animal right lovers, GET THE STICK OUT OF YOUR BUTT people enjoy rodeo’s my kids love them, I love them as well, there are rodeos in every state, no one is going to get them shut down, mise well get the vegas rodeo shut down as well, grow up animal right loves and stop complaining

    • EL JEFE September 15, 2014 at 8:48 am

      “mise well”…..new word “mise”. Hahaha….

  • Joyce A. Johnson-Mullen September 14, 2014 at 12:57 am

    At 22 years of age, I as a novice using my noodle, and common sense would guess the heat plus the heat the bucking generated, would definitely contribute to and bring on a heart attack. One could tell by looking at the poor thing, that it was up there in age, and good judgement, & honest conscientiousness would indicate that it was not in the best interest of the horse for it to participate. In my opinion, greed ruled leading to animal abuse.

  • fekim September 14, 2014 at 4:14 am

    Getting kicked in the ribs tickles the horse, that is why they buck.

  • Koolaid September 14, 2014 at 6:59 am

    Some guy in Hurricane is probably really sad… oh wait, it was a bucking horse.

  • Janelle September 14, 2014 at 8:23 am

    Witnesses are saying the horse actually broke its neck by stepping on the lead, there are 2 stories, which is the truth???? V

    • Joyce Kuzmanic Joyce Kuzmanic September 14, 2014 at 9:14 am

      We’ve seen that, we’ve reported what the general manager of the rodeo company told us when we looked into it, Janelle. If we learn differently, we’ll of course report it.
      ST. GEORGE NEWS | STGnews.com
      Joyce Kuzmanic
      Editor in Chief

  • RAinbow equality September 14, 2014 at 10:00 am

    How could this happen. Why would this happen. An old horse bucking that’s like letting people over 60 go on hike, ride a bike, go to the senior games, drive a care, play pickle ball, tennis or raise their heart rate. Everyone knows that when things get old they should be put out to pasture. Not only is this rodeo animal abuse the senior Olympics is old folks abuse we need to put the horse out in a field where it can only stand around , eat, and poop. Take the old folks back to the retirement homes put them on a drug and let them sit in a wheel chair any thing else is and should be reported as abuse. We know people 60 or older can’t make proper choices for themselves any better than a horse who thinks he can still buck. We strap up a horse flanks he starts bucking, we give old worn out people viagra they start ? Neither horse or old folks are smart enough to know if it ends with ING they shouldn’t be doing it. If we let them we are abusers our selves. So please keep the old horde from bucking and the old folks from . To more abuse please. Make this world a better place. I love all who care and those that can’t think for themselves to care. Love is love old is old. Pasture up granny and grandpa .

    • bobber September 14, 2014 at 10:59 am

      ?????????????????????????

    • JAR September 14, 2014 at 12:56 pm

      Sounds to me like Rainbow Equality is going through that women thing when they reach 45. She has no thought on reaching 60. Keep in mind Rainbow, First comes false teeth, then purchasing Depends on a weekly basis, then writing to the editor on how rude kids are with their load playing in the street. Sounds like you need a saddle thrown on your back now.

    • Real Life September 14, 2014 at 6:12 pm

      Wow Rainbow, you really lost us with that one.

    • AeroPete September 15, 2014 at 8:43 am

      You guys really missed the sarcasm there? I thought it was great. Look, if you want to dictate what an “old,” horse should – or shouldn’t – be doing (in the name of not being cruel) then, its not a far cry to dictate what our seniors should or shouldn’t be doing. In the name of “doing what’s best,” for them. Yes, it sucks that an old horse was out there performing and died of an apparent heart attack but, I’d rather be that horse than the one slaughtered because its owners no longer valued it.

    • EL JEFE September 15, 2014 at 8:54 am

      So are you going to put yourself “out to pasture” when you turn 60? I sure do hope so. Because by your reasoning, you too will start to abuse Viagra and Lord knows what else. Just get your affairs in order by the time you turn 59 because after that, you too will be on your way downhill.

    • Koolaid September 15, 2014 at 5:46 pm

      LOL! “keep the old horse from bucking and the old folks from…” Hahaha!

  • dixiechick September 14, 2014 at 11:12 am

    I’m just amazed that a 22 year old horse was still doing this. That’s old for and I’m not at all surprised it dropped dead.

  • dixiechick September 14, 2014 at 11:14 am

    *for a horse

  • Mr Ed September 14, 2014 at 11:25 am

    Help! I’ve fallen and I can’t giddyup!

  • Darcy September 14, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Did the horse have a name!!!?!?!?

  • Lana September 14, 2014 at 11:40 am

    HOW ABOUT ””NOT”’ BUCKING 22 yr old horses! UGH, rodeo’s !!!
    AHHH…DON’T FEEL THIS ASSHATS PAIN WHATSOEVER!!

    IT’S ABUSE…PERIOD! ENTERTAINMENT ONLY TO AGGRAVATE & ABUSE ANIMALS….worse than this event ‘wild horse race’ & wild cow milking’ WHAT A JOKE , A TERRIBLE ONE AT THAT!! Yeah your the man to ‘compete’ at that!

    • stop complaining September 14, 2014 at 12:16 pm

      people like rodeos get over yourself and let people enjoy stuff they like

    • stop complaining September 14, 2014 at 12:16 pm

      people like rodeos get over yourself and let people enjoy stuff they like

  • Zig Pope September 14, 2014 at 11:55 am

    I am always dismayed at the cruel remarks made by people who claim to care for animals and then laugh or make jokes out of the injury or death of an animal.

    What we do know is that bucking horses are sent to slaughter, when deemed unworthy to compete. We know that several of “rodeo companies” have been known to use “tasers” to get the animals out of the chute “bucking”. What we know is that there are two different stories to what happened, and of course, the owner is taking the better PR position, “had a heart attack”.

    What we know is that the entire world has begun the conversation of the morality and ethics behind cruel exploitation of any animal species that is used for human entertainment or “fun”. Whether it is the dolphin drives in Taiji, Japan, or whale kills in the Faroes, or the abdominal traps, snare and hounding of wolves and bears here in the US, human beings are evolving in how we look at and treat our fellow creatures.

    It is 2014, not 1950, science has advanced in our understanding of the animal world, and the intelligence of animals around us. It is just simply time we also mature in how we think about and treat those intelligent beings around us.

  • Doug Hackford September 14, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    sad but he died doing what he loved

  • Linda September 14, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    Unfortunately, I don’t know what any of you are talking about? I was directed to this site from a flood storm on St. George, Mesquite to LV? It’s no wonder there is so much division between people. Why don’t we concentrate on the “HUMAN RACE” and try & be respectful & learn from all those OLD people, over 60. That may seem really old at your age, in your 20’s, but I’m one of those OLD people, going on 70, that have lots of wisdom that your generation doesn’t want any part of. They are all going astray & want no part of God (I’m NOT LDS) bur our MAKER, who, like it or not, you WILL bow before Him one day & be judged for everything. Good News, Jesus came, died & rose again. This is the gosple that everyone doesn’t want to hear & wants nothing of God. He will return to earth one day, “as in the days of Noah” which we are very close. Sin has is running rampant & God will not always be where you can reach Him. Today is the day of Salvation, take it, repent, find a wonderful church that will teach only from the Bible, love your neighbor & search for your maker. Jesus died a horrible death & society wants it swept under the carpet having congress & the governers, senitors, IRS, all the people who all they care about, is lining their pockets of the almightly dollar. This is the ruin of many countries & will be the ruin of ours. You want be live to be old & have God’s blessings, or maybe have your life be cut shoedd Seek out those OLDER people that have true wisdome of how to live & what there is to live for. If there are any true believers out there, I suggest they do some soul searching, as well as repenting. Get right with God & there is a chance we may not be headed to World Warr III. We may have time to get our nation back from all tjose popple who hate us & want to kill all American’s & for what? May God have Mercy on all of us.

    • Redrock1 September 15, 2014 at 5:19 pm

      The article is about a horse Linda. A horse – you know, big animals, often terrorized in rodeos by hillbillies.

      • Koolaid September 15, 2014 at 5:43 pm

        Or by hillbilllies in hurricane

  • PETA September 14, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Rodeos are fun and animals are tasty, get over it.

  • Let's Evolve September 14, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    Just like the bull fights in Spain, rodeos are viewed on a worldwide scale as being archaic and barbaric. Rodeos are violent and unnecessary and desensitize individuals to accept cruel treatment of animals as normal. I don’t care how steeped in tradition rodeos are in this area. Tradition doesn’t make something acceptable or ethical. Incest and violence toward women, children and animals are traditions passed down in many families. These behaviors are all morally wrong, no matter how much perpetrators reason otherwise.

    • Jim Shue September 14, 2014 at 6:33 pm

      I don’t care how steeped in tradition rodeos are in this area. Tradition doesn’t make something acceptable or ethical. Incest and violence toward women, children and animals, and using personal opinion to force behavior changes in others are traditions passed down in many families. These behaviors are all morally wrong, no matter how much perpetrators reason otherwise.

    • stop complaining September 14, 2014 at 6:50 pm

      rodes are fun like someone said get over it, stop ruining the rodeo for those that like it, if you don’t, then move into the mountains by yourself and then you don’t have to enjoy the things others like

  • bobber September 14, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    The poor old thing is in a better place now– no longer being perpetually violated by these “cowboys”.

  • Bob September 14, 2014 at 11:00 pm

    Animal rights activists need to back up all of this information they make up to try and make an arguement they are very nieve in there comments they have no idea how these animals are actually treated. These rodeo animals are treated very well and their health is very important to the contractors and the riders of the rodeo sports. Get a clue first I don’t go around making stuff up on the proper way to hug a tree or anything that you guys like to do. If you aren’t happy with a place that celebrates the ways this country was brought up such as rodeo and other things get out of town and do all of us a favor.

    • stop complaining September 15, 2014 at 9:50 am

      I agree with you bob, if they don’t like it, they can move

    • Redrock1 September 15, 2014 at 1:40 pm

      God bless his soul, his sacrifice and this great country of ours.

  • ReturnedSafe September 15, 2014 at 11:11 pm

    I went to a foreign land to war in 1968. I just want to say to this cowboy you just feed a family in that country for three months, bless you young man. By the way I’ve been thru the jungle ate a horse with no name, used his body to stay out of the rain. In the jungle that don’t give you no name cause there ain’t no one to call you by name. La la la la la la la la la la la.

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