Saturday, February 23, 2008

Seven Months Later, Where's the Water?

For some people the New York City comptroller's audit of the carriage industry last summer was the first they'd heard of the substandard care of the horses. As we know, and as the audit revealed to the public, the city has largely abandoned its responsibility to the horses. The report by Comptroller William C. Thompson chronicled the abuses: The horses don't have adequate drinking water, even in sweltering summer heat. They are forced to stand in their own waste. No turnout, either. Lax veterinary care was cited, as were infrequent inspections that create health hazards.

Seven months later, where is the water? The horses' need for water is critical year-round, but the troughs in Central Park are turned off. Sometimes after a storm they're icy--and sometimes they're used as trash receptacles.

Elizabeth Forel, president of the Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages, writes in New York Metro of this lapse, which represents a violation of New York state anti-cruelty laws and a serious lapse in judgment. Regardless of your opinion on the state of the city's carriage trade, wouldn't you agree--the horses need water?

Read a compelling viewpoint: "You Can Lead a Horse to Water, If There Is Any" (Feb. 21, 2008)
Photo used courtesy of the Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages

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