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CARRIAGE HORSES
Letters & Editorials

Let's Take the Carriage Horses Off the
Streets of Manhattan

March 27, 1989

To the Editor:
 
The use of carriage horses in New York City is a throwback to Dickensian
times not because it is quaint, but because the treatment of them is
inhumane.

Many of the owners work the animals 10 hours a day and yet do
not provide them with their basic needs. These horses are not given
stalls large enough to lie down in (it is a myth that horses sleep
standing up), and there are no grassy areas or paddocks provided for
their rest. Proper feed, water, veterinary care and shoeing are denied to
most.

Under the best circumstances, the noise, air pollution, traffic
congestion and hard surfaces on which the horses travel would be
sufficient reason to prohibit their use on the streets of Manhattan. If
there are proposals to limit cars because of traffic volume, horses do
not belong there at all.

The carriage-horse trade benefits a very small group of people in this city.
That tourists are attracted to this activity does not justify the potential danger
to humans from traffic accidents and the cruel conditions the horses must endure.

I urge support for Councilman Robert Dryfoos's bill, which is at least an attempt to
make conditions better by limiting hours and location of work. I also
urge measures to eliminate the carriage-horse trade from New York City
entirely or at a minimum provide enforcement measures to assure that the
horses have proper food, shelter, medical care and rest. If the horses
must stay, some space in Central Park must be allocated for them to rest
in.

HELENE G. GOLDBERGER
Brooklyn, March 12, 1989

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