Should a horse have five weeks of vacation each year?
A new law in New York City mandates an annual five-week furlough in a pasture or paddock for the more than 200 carriage horses that trot tourists around Central Park and beyond, through heat and humidity, rain and snow. In addition to the grassy getaway, reports the New York Post, the legislation requires increased veterinary visits, blankets in cold and wet weather, and larger stalls.
“I haven’t had a vacation in a year and a half,” joked one city councilman, who voted in the overwhelming majority for “improving conditions for the horses.”
It’s not about the five-week vacation, said the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which cited its “legacy of responsibility” to carriage horses in opposing the new law. What these “noble animals” need, the ASPCA said, is a permanent vacation, replacing them with electric, horseless carriages.
Yay or neigh: Time off, or time out forever, for carriage horses?