Every year, more and more travellers head across to Pamplona in Spain to take part in the famous festival of San Fermin – better know as the “Running With The Bulls” festival…

Sounds fun? That’s what a lot of people think… but the whole event is shrouded by cruelty. So let me explain why you shouldn’t book your plane tickets just yet…

“What is it all about?”

The event was born out of necessity, to get bulls from their enclosures into the bull-fighting ring to face their untimely death – and over the years more and more tourists have gathered to experience the adreneline that comes with running through the streets with these mighty animals.  In Europe and Latin America 250,000 bulls suffer a brutal, painful death every year in bull-fighting rings, for no other reason but for the amusement of spectators! 

Call me naive but I’m going to assume that, if you’re reading this, you already agree how cruel and sadistic this archaic spectator sport is – so I won’t go into the horrific details of the cruelty inflicted on the poor animals both before the fight and inside the ring. If you do want to learn more, however, visit Stop bull Fighting for details.

“OK, so Bull Fighting is cruel… but what’s wrong with the Running of the Bulls?”

Cooped up, confused and frightened in a dark enclosure, these bulls have already succumbed to shocking and disturbing methods of torture (see the link above). When the doors to their cells are opened, they are forced out onto the noise-filled streets with electric shocks. Temporarily blinded by the light and terrified of the crowds they run through the sharp cornered streets – most of them losing their footing, crashing into walls and injuring themselves. Personally I can’t understand ayone who would find this spectacle alone entertaining – but if that’s not enough, each of these bulls is actually running towards their bloody and merciless deaths in the ring.

“But it’s a tradition!”

This has got to be one of the weakest non-arguments I’ve ever heard – yet is the only one ever offered up in defence of the ‘festivities’. How about, in the spirit of tradition and all, we just pack a few factories full of child labour? Or why don’t we let Queen Lizzie decapitate a few Catholics in honour of her Jubilee? Oh right… because it’s cruel and ridiculous, (and the Queen might get a taste for it).

Some traditions are worth keeping alive; like Christmas and Cocktail Thursdays – others need to abolished and pushed deep into our history books so our children’s children can laugh about how, once upon a time, people actually considered this brutality entertainment.

“What can I do?”

Don’t go, don’t promote it and (if you feel strongly enough) write a letter to the Mayor of Pamplona here to ask that the cruelty be replaced for more compassionate festivities!

This glorified blood-sport is only kept in existence because tourists flock to the events to see what all the fuss is about – so by promoting or attending the festival you are only helping to fuel the bull fighting industry further.

Don’t act as their pawn hotties, you’re better than that.


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