February 10

Horses face uncertain future if NYC carriage rides end

For the approximately 200 horses licensed to pull carriages in New York City, shutting down the city stables might have the unintended effect of sending them faster to the slaughterhouse.

By David B. Caruso
The Associated Press

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

Carriage horse owner Stephen Malone looks in on Tucker in his stall at New York’s Clinton Stables, the largest of the city’s barns. The stables have no outdoor areas, so the horses must spend all of each day either in their stalls or in harness on the street.

The Associated Press

click image to enlarge

Passengers enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride near Central Park on New Year’s Eve day in New York. Mishaps involving horses that bolt or get hit by cars make headlines every few years, with the most recent traffic or spooking deaths in 2006 and 2007.

The Associated Press

Mishaps involving horses that bolt or get hit by cars make headlines every few years, with the most recent traffic or spooking deaths in 2006 and 2007.

“Horses do not belong in the middle of traffic in New York City. They do not belong in an urban environment like this. It’s not safe for them. It’s not fair when you think about what their lives should be and what our society is like,” de Blasio said last week during an appearance on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show.” He has favored replacing the hansom cabs with old-timey electric cars.

At the largest of the city’s barns, Clinton Park Stables, the horses have enough room to lie down on beds of straw. They get regular visits from veterinarians and horse dentists. The building is equipped with sprinklers in case of fire. Overall, the horses appear to be in fine shape.

But there are drawbacks. The stables have no outdoor areas, so the horses must spend all of each day either in their stalls or in harness on the street.

Every horse spends a minimum of five weeks each year at an out-of-town farm, but critics say that isn’t enough for animals that would benefit from daily turnout in a pasture.

Douglass Newbold, a dispatcher at the Large Animal Protection Society, a volunteer organization that enforces anti-cruelty laws in Pennsylvania, said horses clearly weren’t meant for city living, but life in the countryside is often just as grim.

“If you asked the horses, ‘Do you want to be out in a mud paddock with no feed, standing in a snowstorm, or in a dark stall on the fourth floor of some building in New York City?’, I’m not sure how’d they’d answer.”

Were you interviewed for this story? If so, please fill out our accuracy form

Send question/comment to the editors




Further Discussion

Here at OnlineSentinel.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • Type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • Exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)