Calf roping slack began Thursday morning and while this event is a favorite to some...Others consider it cruel.
To the contestants however, the stock is so important to them; they make sure to do their best to treat them with care.
"When a cowboy shows up here he's trying to win first we're not here to injure animals and we take the best care of them. They're fed every night, housed inside when the weather's bad so in rodeo we try to take every precaution to make sure the animals are as safe as they can be. "
Whitfield says that the PRCA fines cowboys who treat the calves poorly...And those fines can total several hundred dollars.
Another requirement of the PRCA is that a veterinarian is present at all events and performances.
Gary Vannoy who has had a practice in Ozona for 40 years was the veterinarian on call today told us that the animals are very rarely injured and that if something does happen, it is taken care of immediately.
"My primary responsibility is to make sure that an injured animal is treated humanely after it's injured."
And to prevent injury to their horses, ropers take several precautions; even down to making sure they get plenty of rest after long periods of travel and making their stalls as comfortable as possible.
"I drove in last night from a rodeo in Belton, Texas and I got here about 11, got a stall, put about 6 or 8 bags of shavings in so they're nice and comfortable so they can rest for a few hours."
The competitors rely on healthy stock to make sure their run goes as smoothly as possible so you can bet that these animals are not only treated with respect but are well taken care of.
I'm Senora Scott with your KSAN stock show and rodeo update.