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Letís Put The Brakes On Horse-Drawn Carriages

Letís Put The Brakes On Horse-Drawn Carriages

You may know that PETA and New Yorkers Against Horse-Drawn Carriages have an active campaign to ban horse-drawn carriages in New York City. Pamela Anderson, Alec Baldwin, Peter Dinklage, Kristen Johnston, Pink and other caring celebrities are promoting the campaign and urging people to contact the New York City Council to voice their opposition to the carriages. (If you haven’t already done so, please sign the petition to New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn.)

Now, PETA is also calling on officials to ban horse-drawn carriage rides in Greenville County, S.C. Two cars recently hit carriages during the Fountain Inn’s Spirit of Christmas Past tour of decorated homes in the area. Mayor Gary Long said that the city will review its policy for carriage rides, but that he hopes the horses will be a part of next year’s festival.

Far too many people have a laissez-faire attitude about horse-drawn carriages. They’re over-romanticized and portrayed as an innocuous tradition, but they’re anything but charming and harmless, and they have no place in our modern civilization. Most horses are not comfortable working among cars and trucks, and many accidents, injuries, and even deaths have resulted because horses have become “spooked” in traffic. According to veterinarian Holly Cheever, it is normal for horses to “react to threatening situations with panic and flight.”

Horses are not covered under the Animal Welfare Act; their only protection comes from already-overburdened local animal control authorities who have little time to make sure that the horses are not overworked or that the carriage operators are following regulations. In winter, horses must trudge through snow and ice, and in summer they often suffer from dehydration or heatstroke. One study found that the temperature of the asphalt can be up to 50 degrees hotter than the air temperature. Horses often become lame and their hooves deteriorate from constantly walking and standing on hard streets. And, as Dr. Cheever points out, horses’ nostrils are usually only 3 to 3 1/2 feet above street level, so the animals are “truly … living a nose-to-tailpipe existence.”

Because horse-drawn carriages are inhumane and pose a danger to public safety, they’ve  been banned in several cities, including Key West, Palm Beach, and Treasure Island, Fla.; Las Vegas; Nev.; and Biloxi, Miss., as well as Paris and London.

It’s time to say neigh to carriage rides in other cities too. In addition to signing the petition above—and writing letters as New Yorkers Against Horse-Drawn Carriages suggests—you can help stop horse-drawn carriages simply by urging people not to patronize them. Try writing a letter to your local paper or passing out leaflets, particularly if you live in Manhattan or another city where horse carriages are still allowed. Also, if you live in a city where carriage rides are common, contact your legislators and ask them to sponsor a ban. No matter where you live, if you witness abuse or neglect to horses, please report it. We mustn’t wear blinders to cruelty.

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137 comments

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8:15PM PDT on Jun 11, 2013

heartwrenching!!!!!!!!!!! I have no words!! I hate this world and the cruelty we inflict on these angels!

5:53AM PDT on May 31, 2013

It's been good to see your blog when I always look for such type of blogs. It’s great to discover the post here.
empire

10:29PM PDT on Jun 8, 2012

These wonderful loving creatures need a better life! I wonder if any of these horses have ever even walked on grass or grazed in a field? So So Sad!

5:57PM PDT on Jun 8, 2012

If you ever have seen how crazy the traffic is and how dangerous it is you might think different. With all the noise and impatient drivers going on it is sometimes hard for people not to get upset. Some of the horses in N.Y.C. may be treated with care but I don't believe all of them are. I personally will never take a ride on one.

7:23AM PDT on Jun 8, 2012

Bucephala, or Alexandria Bucephalus, was a city founded by Alexander the Great and named in honor of his horse, Bucephalus.

So much he cared (Alexander the Great) for his friend the he gave him that Honor of naming a city after him, I have never seen or heard of someone giving that kind of Honor to a Horse!!

I see the Cruelty in which they are being treated and it just breaks my heart, because if it was not for the Horse there would be no world, it was with the Horse that people were able to conquered the world, and this is how they pay them back by mistreating, abusing and killing their sons and daughters with no remorse, how SHAMEFUL!!!

7:14AM PDT on Aug 14, 2009

As a NYC stable owner and carriage owner,family owned 45 yrs,I must say that all these false accusations of cruelty bears not 1 grain of truth,or proof.Animals certainly have rights,no argument there,but they have the right to get sick and die too,occasionally.Four horses out of the few hundred died over a few yr stretch.No owner was accused by any govt officals nor where any owner cited for contributing to their horses death.With all the daily and weekly inspections by the aspca,their vets,the health dept and their vets,mounted police and their vets,they don't see any ''abuse''.No other carriage service across the US is under this much restrictions and inspections,and still we work everyday with very little occasional problems.We are licensed,heavily regulated and insured.Stables are licensed,owners and drivers are licensed,carriages are licensed,horses are licensed.Every aspect reguarding,stabling,licensing,and operating is observed everyday by 5 agencies.

11:48PM PDT on Mar 12, 2009

of curse in mexico we have many cities where they have this carriages pepole like them but how is taking care of the helth of the horses and there welfare here in mexuico and everywhere there have to stop the things and at least take very good care of horses

9:15PM PST on Feb 5, 2009

are you freaking serious, i hate peta. what good is a freaking horse if you can't use it to pull a freaking buggy. they have been doing it for centuries. they are work animals people. what the hell else you gonna do with them. uh, ride'em or are the dumbass's at peta trying to stop that too.

8:57PM PST on Feb 1, 2009

Donna, if you are so confident about the good treatment these hoses receive why not spent a day with your nose to an exhaust pipe & then retire to a hole in the wall with no room to move. let us know how you like it!

7:55PM PST on Feb 1, 2009

Unfortunately for us and our horses here in NYC, we are one of the humaniacs’ primo targets, as we fit the bill perfectly: a small, high-profile industry with very limited resources. You can see what an excellent opportunity our industry not only for misguided people, but for targeted fundraising by large AR groups like PETA.

Many of the AR people would rather see a horse dead than have a job. To them, a carriage horse doing what it was bred to do, and living a comfortable, content existence alongside his driver, is no different from Michael Vick and a pile of mutilated fighting dogs or undercover horror videos revealing grotesque cruelties at factory farms.

Indeed, humaniacs have made public statements comparing the carriage horse trade to the enslavement of people of African descent, and the Holocaust of the Jewish people during WWII.

Can any of you imagine what it is like for someone like me - a lifelong horse person, dedicated to my horses in every way - to be maligned and vilified like this? Even if you are only a pet owner - imagine someone constantly lying and distorting how you treat your pet, and then going public with it.

There are no horse-torturing monsters in our business, no matter what any of them say.

And while everyone is entitled to their own opinion, they are not entitled to their own facts.

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