Westerner Park is hoping to regain the trust of the community as it moves forward, the organization said at its annual annual general meeting on Wednesday. (File photo by Advocate staff).

Horse euthanized after ‘unfortunate incident’ during Wagons at Westerner in Red Deer

Westerner Park says a horse has been euthanized following an “unfortunate incident” during Wagons at Westerner Saturday night.

During the final heat of the North American Pony Chuckwagon Championships, one of the equine athletes lost stride causing the wagon to halt allowing no time for reaction and affecting the driver behind as well, Westerner Park said in a statement.

“An on-site veterinarian immediately cared for the horses on the track and determined the extent of the injuries,” the statement said.

“Unfortunately, due to the injuries sustained, one of the horses was euthanized. On close inspection of the animal and further review, it was determined a muscular-skeletal event occurred. All other animals were assessed post-race by the track veterinarian and deemed to be in good health. Neither driver was injured in the event.”

Westerner Park said the organization, as well as the Alberta Professional Chuckwagon & Chariot Association, are committed to the safety of the drivers and their animals, “ensuring the utmost animal welfare standards are adhered to.”

“Every possible precaution is taken to ensure the animal’s safety and wellbeing.”

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