Straight out of Cinderella’s game plan, a horse-drawn carriage usually conjures images of royalty, luxury and romance. Sadly, recent photos snapped by an eyewitness in New York City might prove that for those actually involved in the heavy lifting, the horses themselves, these rides aren’t so much Disney’s Cinderella as they are Grimm’s.As beautiful and useful as they are, proper veterinary care, feeding and general upkeep make them an expensive animal to own and take care of.
In New York City, where horse-drawn carriage rides are a major tourist attraction, there’s always debate brewing over the possible retirement of this historical practice. The tradition harkens back to well over a century ago, before cars were the norm and people relied on more equine methods of transportation. However in recent years, allegations of animal abuse have become rampant, even forcing the ASPCA to create new regulations intended to protect the horses.Unfortunately many supporters of animal welfare groups say the regulations are difficult to enforce and rarely checked up on. Photos like the ones of Norman are a glaring example of what might be happening to horses behind closed doors.
Long Island native Bodgan Paul Angheluta was leaving a night club in Manhattan around 2 a.m. when he claimed he saw a carriage driver encourage his horse, Norman, to move quickly in order to make a green light before it changed. Angheluta said the horse was obviously unable to keep the pace requested and promptly collapsed on the pavement before him.A statement from the New York carriage industry, claimed after a veterinary assessment it was found that Norman was not suffering from any form of exhaustion or injury and had simply taken a wrong step. Spokesperson Christina Hansen painted the incident as something likely to occur with Norman, characterizing him as “kind of a klutz.”