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A Mayor for a Mare: Carriage Horses and the NYC Mayoral Election

Screen Shot 2013-07-12 at 10.33.30 AMAn interesting new agenda is on the table for the upcoming New York City mayoral election: the carriage horses frequently seen around Central Park and the surrounding midtown streets.

Central Park is a place of quiet respite for New Yorkers, an iconic wonderland for tourists and home to some 220 carriage horses. When I first came to the city, I didn’t know anything about these horses but it was impossible to miss the sadness in their eyes. It turns out that there are multiple problems with these sensitive creatures working in a raucous city like New York, many of which stem from a lack of enforcement on industry regulations.

Although there is a mandated maximum of nine consecutive hours allowed for shifts, horses frequently work 12 hour days. Temperature regulations do not take wind chill nor ashphalt surfaces (which can reach 200 F in the summer) into account, so the horses are forced to work in burning heat and freezing cold. After the 3am curfew, they are relegated to a stable on the west side of midtown where conditions have been found to include no hay or bedding, stall floors covered in urine and manure, inadequate ventilation, limited access to water and stacked floors that obstruct escape in case of fire.

It isn’t only the horses who suffer. Working in these poor conditions, often with injuries or improperly fitted shoes, means that they are liable to become spooked in traffic. There have been at least 18 instances in the last two years where this has ended in both horses and people being injured, and sometimes severely. The law technically prohibits honking when behind a horse but anybody who’s walked the streets of New York knows that this means nothing — everybody honks, and traffic moves fast.

When they can no longer drag thousands of pounds through the streets every day, the horses are frequently sold for slaughter. It takes only four to five years for many to reach this point, as they are often brought in with pre-existing injuries or arthritis after working on racetracks and farms. Comparatively, police horses have a life span of up to 15 years.

As a long heralded iconic part of New York City, the major argument for preserving the carriage horses is that they are vital to the city’s tourism industry and as such, provide jobs for approximately 300 carriage operators. Fortunately, there is a solution that would ensure jobs for workers in the carriage horse industry — with potential for higher wages — while continuing to provide rides for tourists. NYClass has proposed legislation, known as Intro 86A, that would see the horses swapped for vintage replica electric cars, not unlike those featured in The Great Gatsby.

One look at these environmentally friendly vehicles and it’s easy to see that the romance of the experience would not only be preserved, but enhanced. London, Paris, Toronto, Las Vegas, Santa Fe and Palm Beach in Florida have all successfully banned horse-drawn carriages without any major damage to tourism.

The good news is that you can choose to support the abolition of horse abuse whether you vote as a Democrat or a Republican. Four candidates have spoken openly in direct support of replacing the long abused carriage horses with electric-powered replicas of classic cars: Bill de Blasio, Bill Thompson and John Liu, of the Democrats, and Joseph Lhota, of the Republicans.

Several candidates have expressed neutral but ultimately unsupportive opinions regarding the horses. John Catsimatidis has offered, somewhat bizarrely, to send the horses to Central Park Zoo on their retirement, but said he would not abolish the practice. Meanwhile, Sal F. Albanese appears ultimately disinterested in the horses at all, citing his priorities as creating jobs. Mayor Bloomberg says the horses are lucky to have a job and to be alive at all. Interestingly, his daughter Georgina Bloomberg has disagreed and said she doesn’t believe the horses are kept in the best condition.

In May this year, the prominent activist group NYClass announced that they have “literally every major mayoral candidate but Christine Quinn on board to end the inhumane horse carriage industry in New York.” Democratic candidate Christine Quinn, despite claiming to be an animal lover, has actively blocked multiple animal protection bills since 2006. This includes legislature to bring carriage horses off the streets, to install fire sprinklers in pet stores and to increase desperately needed funding for New York City’s animal shelters. NYClass, a predominantly liberal group, has even gone so far as to consider supporting Republican candidate Joseph Lhota over Christine Quinn.

If you are a New York City resident, you are eligible to vote in the upcoming mayoral election. If you aren’t a resident, you can still write to the elected candidate (or current Mayor, Michael Bloomberg) to let them know that you support Intro 86A. I encourage you to use your power and speak up. As Anna Sewell wrote in Black Beauty, “My doctrine is this, that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt.”

To learn more, visit NYClass.org and BanHDC.org.

12 Comments

  1. Comment by

    Laura McFarland-Taylor

    on #

    There really is not enough time to go through this opinion piece line by line, but I suggest that before you speak on a subject you actually do your own investigation – including visiting the stables, which are clean, open, airy, and well-ventilated, stalls are well-bedded and big enough for the horses to turn around and lie down, the horses can all see each other, they have plenty of hay, custom mix grain, automatic waterers, sprinklers in case of, God forbid, a fire, misters and fans. Plus 24/7/365 stable hands and within blocks of fire stations. Regular vet and farrier visits.

    The proposed electric cars are hardly “environmentally friendly”. Have you any idea what goes into their manufacture (aside from the fact that each is projected to cost $125,000 to $175,000 and the proto-type [which has yet to be built] will cost between $400,000 – $475,000)? Or how, exactly, the highly toxic batteries will be disposed of? Or how those batteries are actually charged?

    Nothing is more environmentally friendly than horse power. Did you know that a farmer in Pennsylvania uses the muck from the NYC carriage horse stables to grow mushrooms?

  2. Comment by

    Karen Keirstead

    on #

    I can’t urge you enough to do your research. I can’t believe someone would post information without getting the facts first. This article is full of miss information.
    First: there are very tight regulations in place and enforced for the welfare of the carriage horses. The NYCHA were the people who put the rules into effect for fear of ever having a carriage company come into NYC that did not have the horses welfare first and foremost in mind.
    Second: How do you determine a horse is sad by looking into their eyes? I just want to know. For the horses I have seen in NYC are alert healthy and happy horse’s so please educate me.
    Third: Please let me know what abuse these NYC Carriage horse are exposed to. The only abuse I have ever seen the horse’s subjected to are the Animal Rights Activist yelling, shouting, and trying to spook the horse into traffic (which I can only suspect was to kill the horse).
    Forth: The electric cars are a disaster. All manufactures in the USA are scrambling to find ways to make them work so people will buy them. They are extremely expensive; are highly un-reliable; the manufacturing and disposal of the batteries are toxic to the workers and the environment.
    There is so much more to say, but I’ll stop. In closing if you are looking to make the city safer, greener, and attract better business and tourists get more horses. They are the natural way to be green. People love horses and horses love attention especially from children. Central Park, in part was created with horses in mind, it’s time NYC get back to its roots for the safety and wellbeing of its citizens and visitors.

  3. Comment by

    Scott Loydd

    on #

    Laura and Karen. You both made excellent points, the only thing I could add is the most of the electricity needed to charge the cars will be generated by burning coal.

    To Katherine Wallace- again, its very unprofessional to write a column without reasearching it yourself , which you obviously did not do because its riddled with misinformation and downright lies. And for God’s sake woman, go eat a cheese burger! It will do you a world of good.

  4. Comment by

    Anita

    on #

    I don’t think you guys know anything about horses. Get educated and experienced before you make judgments about that which you know nothing about. .

  5. Comment by

    Andrea Whiting

    on #

    What a bunch of horse pucky went into the writing of this article. This is so full of misinformation and anyone that knows anything about horses can see right through this piece of garbage that you are passing off as a literary piece.

    There is NOTHING more environmentally friendly than true horse power and in today’s hustle and bustle, it is great to take a relaxing trip through the park and listen to the clip clop of horses hooves on the pathways harken back to the days of when Central Park was actually planned and constructed for the purpose of seeing the park from horse back or from carriage.

    Horses ARE bedded with straw, on top of rubber matted stalls that are large enough for the horses to turn around and lie down. They have professional caretakers that are there around the clock, daily in all kinds of weather. Horses do NOT work longer shifts, unfortunately the anti-carriage people consist of mostly non-horse people who cannot tell one white horse from another, or one black horse from another.

    Somehow all of the anti-carriage people also claim that “used up” carriage horses all go to slaughter. They say this because of two that were “rescued” by the anti groups. Both of those horses have actual “stories” and were not sent to auction by the carriage drivers, they were sent to auction by third parties to which the horses had been given or sold to. The information is out there, however when someone points it out on one of the anti-carriage pages, the story is made to disappear by the page administrators. Anyone that offers up contradictory information on those pages (which in many cases is told to clear up lies, misinformation or to dispute horse veterinary claims) is banned, all of their comments are stripped and they are labeled an animal abusing troll. I got banned from one page for simply stating that horses cannot throw up.

    As a horse person myself, I hear so many inaccuracies spewed out of the mouths of the anti-group…..”sad horses” are actually horses that are so comfortable and well adjusted in their environment that they snooze. Horses are capable of snoozing with their eyes open and on their feet. They have a locking mechanism in their stifle joints that allow them to sleep standing, having evolved as prey animals they can “mentally check out” to take a rest, but with eyes open they have just that slight awareness that lets them see potential predators.

    I have not seen any “bad shoeing” jobs on the horses. They are larger horses that carry a lot of weight on their frames and they need a slightly longer hoof and in some horses a higher heel….depending on the horse’s conformation. The anti-carriage people have been listening to pseudo horse people that think that all horses should be barefoot or on tiny, over-manicured feet….FAR FROM THE TRUTH! You shoe for the job the horse is asked to do and you shoe with the horse’s physical traits in mind.

    If you ask any of these horse owners, I promise that they will tell you that their horses have mandated health plans, dental plans, podiatry plans, mandatory vacation time, cannot work in weather extremes, have limited work hours. None of the owners have this available to them I am sure.

    I currently manage a stable with 34 horses, people work with horses not for the money, but for the love of being around these magnificent creatures and for the bonds that develop between the horse and owner/caretaker. Horses need care at all hours, in all weather extremes. My horses work limited hours but I don’t, I often put in 80+ hours a week….if we are at a show, it is often more hours than that. If you break it down hourly, I make less than minimum wage; considerably less, but I do it for the love of it and the carriage drivers that I know do it for the love of the horse also.

    I would not want to be in their (the carriage driver’s) shoes having to go to work and having people shout at them that they are “abuser” and “murderers” and receive the threats that they do. It is not right that they have to go through this.

  6. Comment by

    Jenna

    on #

    Wow, maybe we should have replace the horses in Central Park with all the trolls who’ve come out of the woodwork to descend on this comments section. I’d totally take a romantic troll-drawn carriage ride around the park.

  7. Comment by

    Gail

    on #

    They are not trolls; they are horse lovers. What they say is true. The NYC carriage horses are happy and well-cared for. Visit their stables. Visit their retirement farm in Massachusetts. Do you know they go on vacation to a farm in Pennsylvania? The horses get the time off; not the drivers.

  8. Comment by

    Alan Rochette

    on #

    “The NYC Carriage Horses are Well Kept & adored!”
    It baffles me to no end, when activists ignore factual information. When a rebuttal makes for deletion because a viewpoint is based on fact. When they believe in hearsay, promote untruths, and strive to enrage sentiment by means of twisting a photo and it’s somber heartfelt meaning into their twisted version of evil.

    So let’s talk some factual evidence.

    The 1,000′s of horses who don’t have such a well cared for home, as do the NYC carriage horses.

    The ones who do not receive no proper medical care, feed, farrier and veterinarian service.

    The 1,000′s of horses in need of adoption, who generally wind up en-route to slaughter… And you wonderful folks ignore those, and continue to protest against well cared for horses.

    Yes, the carriage horses are “extremely” well cared for. By and with all the professional services listed above, and more. And those services are recorded by date, and maintained on file.

    There are no allegations or citations of any services not rendered, nor of poor care within the stables. The stables are clean, well ventilated, stock full of hay, grain and whatever supplements are required for the horses by individual need. They are protected by a complete sprinkler system, and with 24 hour in house personnel. Stalls are cleaned meticulously, as needed. Yet any horse resting or asleep are not required to, nor bothered – to have bedding changed until they are up.

    Rest & sleep are well respected and allowed. And speaking of used bedding, all used bedding and manure gets green-recycled into organic farming… Hay & bedding delivered, and packed barrels of used, kept in a secure & clean area, is then removed by the same contractor and taken away. Consistent fresh water, free choice hay supplied, all stalls kept clean and refreshed as needed with bedding… There are no health problems with the stables, nor any sort of lack of care. And this has been shown, time & time again to visitors and the media.

    Turnout is not needed, when a horse has such a regular routine as the carriage horses. That is their time out of the stables, and to which they are use to. It is their routine. And “Routine” provides consistency and a level of comfort. A carriage horse that is not allowed to go out, is one that quickly becomes uneasy… Actually wondering what happened to the “Routine”? They are able to be with one another, walk the same circuit and maintain a positive accomplishment and enjoy the people. And yes, horses enjoy people, especially in a routine. In a pasture setting, most horses will come to a fence line to see people… And, pastures are used, to allow horses out of stalls. Yet after some time, horses can become very bored with just pasture time.They want something to do… They look for humans and look for that routine.

    This “public” statement really floored me:
    “We advocate for the right of these horses to live free according to their own terms and not to be enslaved,” : Elizabeth Forel – Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages

    My goodness woman. Have you not heard of the plight of the American Mustang?

    The “only” true breed of horse that can sustain itself totally in the wild, within the North American lands.

    They are being rounded up by the thousands and by your quote, “Enslaved” by our own Government. That’s enslavement!

    And just How does a domesticated horse “Live free according to their own terms?”

    They need Veterinarian care, farrier service, equine dentistry, annual shots to prevent disease, and a proper diet…

    For a domesticated horse will “Not” survive long on it’s own.

    We have actually had “Lost” horses in Massachusetts, sadly to be found many months later deceased. No, they did not survive on the land alone. And it is the fear of any horse person, to have a horse become lost… For the reality is all to real. There are too many ways to a domesticated horse, to succumb to death, by being solely on it’s own. And it usually ends up in a tragic death. A broken leg, or neck, or starvation.

    Just one example…
    http://www.netposse.com/stolenmissing/CharlzMAjun08.htm *

    “Tuesday, January 19, 2010 3:31 PM
    Subject: WE FOUND CHARLZ CARCASS ABOUT A QUARTER MILE IN THE FOREST OFF BULLOCK ROAD

    Hi Marge,

    A hunter went to a nearby home on Bullock Raod about 11 AM this morning and knocked on the door and said “I think I just found that lady’s horse….” , and he did.

    The neighbor contacted my husband and they went into the woods to verify before calling me..

    His saddle was still in tact, his bones strewn across a secluded area about a quarter mile behind a house off Bullock Road.
    We searched that same area extensively over and over again and to no avail.
    My heart is heavy and I am soaked with not only the rain but my grief, all over again.
    At least I have closure now and I pray that one day you will too.
    We are going to make a memorial and put an engraved stone at the site.”

    Take the big name trainers, talk with well known horse handlers and Breed Organizations. And they would also say much as I do now.
    Any good horse person knows and respects this man / this horse trainer.
    -> Buck Brannaman on the NYC carriage horses:
    ” Next on my schedule were a couple of young women from MTV and Rolling Stone magazine. One of them asked, “What about those poor horses in Central Park? Don’t you think it’s awful how they have to pull those heavy carriages all day?”
    I had an answer for that question “No, I don’t,” I said, then explained that the Central Park horses are content. Pulling carriages on rubber-rimmed wheels on paved streets is a low-stress job, and the horses are calm and relaxed, not anxiously laying their ears back or wringing their tails. Plus, these horses get lots of attention and affection from passerby. And horses love attention and affection as much as we do.
    The horses that people should be concerned about are the neglected ones that, after the “newness” of ownership wears off, live in box stalls all day. These horses have no purpose, no jobs to do. All they do is eat and make manure. Even prisoners get to exercise more than these horses, and the horses have never done anything wrong.
    If they had the choice, these horses would choose to be carriage horses rather than stand in their stalls.”
    **from: Buck Brannaman, The Faraway Horses, page 251.

    Folks should read this article:
    Columnists: Nicole Gelinas of the NYPOST wrote the following
    (from the link below):

    “Fight protester cruelty … Anti-hansom crew out of control”
    Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/fight_protester_cruelty_YFsW6mSlsHWqnCvSMbcOzO#ixzz21gFhjPSw

    Last week, after a hansom cab driver was caught on video yelling anti-gay and anti-black slurs, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn demanded that carriage drivers sign up for sensitivity training. Sure — but the protesters who verbally and physically attack the drivers should take the same class.

    Quinn wrote to the Teamsters, which represents drivers, after tennis legend Martina Navratilova saw a carriage driver calling protesters “dykes” and “n——” last month. Navratilova sent an open letter to the speaker, noting, “As evidenced by the hateful, bigoted carriage driver in the video, everything about this industry is stuck in the 19th century.”
    Of course, no one should ever use such cruel speech. But protesters use calculated cruelty on drivers on a regular basis — and some of it spills over onto the horses.
    It’s not to defend hate speech to say that a driver would have to be a saint not to respond to the abuse hurled each weekend.
    Not long ago, I witnessed the same type of incident that Navratilova likely saw (and I’ve seen a muted version of it several times). Two women, one older and one younger, stood just a foot away from a driver, screaming at the top of their lungs that he was a “murderer” and a “killer.”
    Their piercing screams were scaring the horse. The driver patted his horse and, in refuting the murder charge, said to the protesters, at first quietly, that “he’s alive.”
    The women screamed “murderer” louder, and the man began to shout that “he’s alive.”
    This went on until the man screamed “dykes.”
    Acceptable? No. But it’s a double standard when a group of protesters is allowed, unprovoked and untruthfully, to call someone a “murderer,” which has to be the worst slur of all.

    Protesters engage in other hateful and unacceptable behavior. They berate families who approach carriages for a ride, saying that they’re participating in murder. They don’t try to deter customers with facts, but with shouted intimidation.
    They brandish photos of a dead horse lying in the street — misleading photos: The horse died last year not of maltreatment, but of a common ulcer that is hard to detect, according to the Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which polices the trade.**

    [ **And that statement was later retracted by the Veterinarian involved, to which she basically lost her job over... for being honest.
    ASPCA veterinarian suspended without pay after clarifying comments on NYC carriage horse death
    Nov 10, 2011
    By: Rachael Whitcomb
    DVM360 MAGAZINE

    New York, N.Y. — The Teamsters Union came to the defense of a veterinarian who was suspended by ASPCA after revising her statement about the death of a carriage horse.
    Dr. Pamela Corey, director of equine veterinary services for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Humane Law Enforcement Department, was suspended without pay after clarifying comments she made about the horse’s cause of death.
    http://veterinarynews.dvm360.com/dvm/Veterinary+Equine/ASPCA-vet-suspended-over-carriage-horse-comments/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/748451

    Some do know the "Whole Story" of Charlie
    ...as commented upon in No-Walk's photo. ]

    Showing this photo as evidence of maltreatment is akin to showing a photo of a man dead on the street of a heart attack as evidence that his employer treated him cruelly.

    In the past, they’ve brandished photos of another horse, who died when a drummer startled him and caused him to run into a post.

    (That’s an argument for New York to enforce its noise laws: Illegal noise-making makes all of us want to bash our head into something.)

    As for Navratilova saying that one driver’s name-calling painted the whole industry poorly: Perhaps she needs training to learn not to paint such a broad brush based on one person.

    Are carriage horses mistreated?
    If so, the advocates need better evidence.

    What is a fact, though, is that the real-estate and “affordable” housing industries would love to get their hands on the Far West Side stables where the horses live.

    Walk west toward the Hudson River, and you’ll see horse drivers brushing and feeding horses where real-estate developers would rather house 20-somethings in tiny-unit “luxury” high-rises for a few years before the 20-somethings put their furniture on the sidewalk and decamp for the suburbs, making room for a new batch who pay high taxes without demanding services.

    At any rate, if horse drivers can’t lose it after being severely provoked, the protesters should adhere to some ground rules, too:

    * Stop wielding sensational photos that don’t provide evidence for your cause.

    * Stop calling non-murderers “murderers.”

    * Stop interfering in legal business deals between driver and customer.

    * Most important, stop yelling.

    Screaming induces health-killing stress in humans as well as horses — and if you need to scream, your argument must be weak.

    Nicole Gelinas is a contributing editor to the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal.
    ********************************************************************

    So, you continue to fabricate, to mislead, to promote sensationalism…

    But do not forget to mention how “Mane ‘n Tail” president did a complete reversal of support to you folks, after he learned the truth.
    After he personally viewed the horses, went inside the stables, talked with the drivers. And was shown respect for he came in with an open mind and gave them respect…
    The only “Abuse” he found, was the outrageous fabrication and untruths that were told to him by NYClass in the beginning.
    His exact statement can be found here:
    http://manentailequine.com/expert-blog-news/a-word-from-the-president-of-straight-arrow-products-inc/

    And “Mane ‘n Tail” endorses the NYC Carriage horses.

    (Remember, they dropped their sponsorship of NYCLASS last year, after the stable tour)
    And “Mane ‘n Tail” again was a Sponsor for this years ClipClop-2013 event!

    So again, What are your credentials and expertise in all of this?

    Would you care to list them?

    Other than getting under the skin of some very tired drivers, who have to let you scream, shout, and wave signage at the horses…

    Oh, now there is a “Spook Factor” you never seem to mention.

    But you all are so concerned for safety…

    I can list factual web links for anyone to explore, to the exact sources themselves.

    And NYClass is for sure, not an exact source.

    They are activists & protesters. They refuse to have commentary, no matter how factual it might be, placed upon their walls. They will not rationally debate, nor be open minded.

    NYClass has No involvement in the care of horses.

    They do not rescue, nor do they donate to helping any rescue with any substantial donation to my knowledge.

    Prove me wrong on that…

    And for the like of their own cause of horses in traffic, under bit, in downtown NYC…
    Why is it, they do not protest in all fairness, against the NYC Police Mounted Patrol Unit?
    Those horses breath the same air, have to deal with congestion & traffic.
    And spent shift hours on duty.
    Are placed into stalls. And basically have the same care, feed and services to them as carriage horses…
    Oh, you did mention they have an exercise ring…
    But the carriage horses get their proper exercise, and maintain a very high level of health from their work. As good working horses literally do!

    And…. could it just be:
    That if one where to wave signage,
    yell & protest in raised voices to a NYC Police horse,
    just one might get arrested?

    And to all those motorists, that horde of driven congestion in NYC.
    Have they some special wavier that I am not being told about?
    For, By Law:

    “Horses Have The Right Of Way” on any public road within the United States of America,unless restricted.
    And those restrictions are usually for limited access highways such as Interstates and toll roads.
    Those laws have been in place for many years, and are also common sense laws.
    And as a horseman, I am not going to allow, my right… and the right of my horse,to be taken away.

    Those rights of the road were earned with decades of hard work and acknowledgment to a partnership with man and horse!

    And that is to include individual horses & riders, carriage horses, mounted patrol horses, and more.

    And there are also Laws on the books, to which anyone found to “Spook” a horse(s) may be found either civilly or criminal guilty.
    And, it’s about time all of these Laws, both Motor Vehicle / Road laws, and Civil & Criminal were enforced!
    Your New York Law below:
    ARTICLE 26 – New York Vehicle and Traffic Law :RIGHT OF WAY
    S 1146-a. Approaching horses.
    1. Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law to the contrary, every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any horse being ridden or led along a public highway.

    2. Every driver of a vehicle shall approach a horse being ridden or led along a public highway at a reasonable and prudent speed so as to avoid frightening such horse and shall pass the horse at a reasonable distance.

    3. No driver of a vehicle shall sound the horn when approaching or passing a horse on a public highway.

    As For Being “Open & Honest”
    The New York City Carriage Horse Association is nothing more than that.

    “You” say their stable are not open to the public.

    I say that is Totally FALSE.

    Here is the Open Invite. Folks may come and learn first hand.
    This annual event is even larger, more detailed, than last year’s.
    http://clipclopnyc.com/
    … but yes there is a catch. You have to behave, you have to register.

    In plain terms, NO… you just can’t walk into a locale-of-business, and protest.
    I know of no operating business that would allow / endure that.

    But, the invite is there, many have gone in the past, from throughout the country. And anyone may register, until the maximum amount of people have filled the quota.
    A complete tour. “Q&A’s” session. Take your photos. See every horse and examine the whole daily routine. And understand, while you are doing this, horses & carriages are going out and returning. The daily routine does not stop just because a tour is at hand.

    My personal album has been public for over a year. I went, I did the same as the President of “Mane ‘n Tale” did. I got the facts first hand and was overwhelmed by the truth of the matter. And I have found the people, the families and the owner / operators of the World’s most famous Carriage horses are to be admired. Their care and love for the horses is just so…
    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.3409932803616.156446.1128844543&type=3

    And because of the unjust and daily grind, of protests and taunting. Does one really wonder at times why a temper flares… When a driver / teamster is suppose to concentrate on his duties, and the activists continually interfere… Are they not making the inherent risk factor so much more, of making both horses & drivers wary?

    As for the Mayor’s daughter, again I feel no research was ever done. More to the liking of jumping on a band wagon with celebrities, probably adored the “Au-natural” poster with plastic horse and the nakedness of the actor portrayed.

    Perhaps, if you have the time, you might like to review another “Note” I have penned:
    “A little “Bit” about NYC Carriage Horses…”
    https://www.facebook.com/notes/alan-rochette/a-little-bit-about-nyc-carriage-horses/10151529893733151

  9. Comment by

    Alan Rochette

    on #

    Maybe one should read:
    When the candidates say ‘neigh’
    From the NYPOST
    By NICOLE GELINAS
    Last Updated: 1:25 AM, July 15, 2013
    Posted: 11:31 PM, July 14, 2013
    http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/when_the_candidates_say_neigh_JaN8RCT0m1YnLMBTDUsZNO

  10. Comment by

    Sharon

    on #

    To the trolls – Do any of you actually live or work in NYC? I work in Hell’s Kitchen and see the horses travel from Central Park to their stables regularly. Cars honk and quickly swerve around the carriage horses. The bottom line is horses DO NOT belong in New York City in 2013. They belong on farms not in cities. If you were real animal lovers, you would agree.

  11. Comment by

    Appyrdr

    on #

    I have driven on those “idyllic” country roads and within a large city with substantial traffic. I have dealt with cars traveling 50 -70 mph, motorcycles scraping their way, drag racing because “the cops aren’t out this far” and the gravel makes for a better skid, semis taking a shortcut because they are in a hurry. Those country roads can be a recipe for disaster. Driving in the city is infinitely safer, cars and trucks at 25-30 mph at most, a well trained horse that ignores car horns and sirens, and moves with the traffic at a comfortable pace. Driving a horse in the city is a safer, much less frightening option than those scenic country roads.

  12. Comment by

    Elisa Verna

    on #

    Regardless of whether or not the horses are cared for (which they aren’t, I saw a horse-drawn carriage clopping through Manhattan yesterday in 90-something degree heat and the horse looked miserable and unkempt), how about we don’t exploit animals for human gain, yea?

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