Taking a horse and buggy through Central Park might seem like the ultimate tourist attraction that everybody loves, but, in reality it is pure animal abuse. The beautiful horses that we see parading down the streets of the city, giving rides to excited tourists from all over the world, aren't enjoying an exciting life in the city, as many oblivious visitors and even citizens believe. In most cases they are actually overworked, underfed and often living in miserable situations. Their stalls are far too small, they don't get mucked on a regular basis, and there is no grazing. These animals are laying on concrete floors, surrounded by stale excrements, waiting to go to work every day and being mistreated in the process. An excerpt from a factual article written by the Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages explains:
'Even for healthy horses, a carriage ride is not an easy trip. Most cities have only minimal regulations governing working conditions for carriage horses, and these regulations are rarely enforced. Carriage horse operators know all the loopholes in their city's laws. An officer with the Canadian SPCA has said, "[I]f regulations state that a horse can work for nine consecutive hours, but [fail] to say within a 24-hour period, [drivers will] work the horse for nine hours, give the horse an hour or two of rest, then come back on the road."(3) As a result, many horses work 12 or more hours a day, often in extreme weather conditions.'
'Conditions for carriage horses aren't much better when the horses are off the streets. Raids on carriage horse stables have exposed stalls with no hay or other bedding, stall floors covered with urine and manure, poor ventilation in the stables, and horses who had no free access to water. Many stables have stacked floors--like parking garages--with steep ramps leading from one floor to the next. The floors in one stable were so rotten, they often gave way under the weight of the horses, repeatedly causing animals to break their legs.'
Peta also states in 'The Cruelty of Horse-Drawn Carriages' 'Horses are afforded no protection under the federal Animal Welfare Act, so the responsibility of looking out for their welfare falls to local animal-control officials. But anti-cruelty laws provide few safeguards to horses, and many humane agencies just don't have the resources or the time to monitor horse-drawn carriages on a regular basis. Animals can easily be overworked when profit-driven operators fail to follow regulations.'
Not only are horse-drawn carriage rides abusive to animals, they are also dangerous for humans. In 2018 alone there were over twenty horse-drawn-carriage accidents in the US. These accidents often involve the injury or even death of horses, drivers and pedestrians.
The city of New York is doing nothing about this barbaric tradition! The ASPCA and numerous other protectors of animals have offered to supply adoption homes and lifelong care to each induvidual horse when this industry is finally banned. That time has come now.
Save these horses before it's too late for them to enjoy a life worth living!