In December Dubai is to hold its first Camel Marathon, which covers 31 miles and awards luxury prizes to winners. Camel racing is just one of a variety of unusual animal sports:
Canines have competed on the breakers in Hawaii and California since the 1920s; points are given for ride length, wave size and confidence.
Since the 1960s, the World Snail Racing Championships in the English village of Congham have drawn entrants from as far away as Hong Kong.
In rural China, pig diving has become a recent draw for tourists. The Piggy Kingdom Family Amusement Park in Zhejiang province has pigs jump off a 39-ft. platform, some 6 ft. higher than the tallest Olympic ones.
This appears in the October 26, 2015 issue of TIME.