New York City carriage horses live and work under conditions far removed from what nature intended and humanity dictates. While the ASPCA welcomes regulations to improve the well-being of carriage horses while they’re on the streets, we ultimately favor the provisions outlined in Intro. 86A: legislation that calls for a phase-out of horse carriages in New York City, replacing them with electric-powered replicas of classic cars.
Intro. 86A addresses the economic, environmental and quality-of-life interests of both the horses and the people of New York. These cars will serve and entertain tourists, provide jobs to workers currently in the carriage horse industry, and retain the nostalgic feel of carriage horse tours.
- The NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene and the Department of Consumer Affairs regulate the carriage horse industry in New York City, including licensing and veterinary oversight.
- New York City carriage horses are permitted to work nine hours a day, seven days a week.
- It is illegal for a driver to operate a carriage when the temperature is 90 degrees F or above, or 18 degrees F or below. No adjustment is made to account for wind chill or the humidity index.
To ensure that carriage horses enjoy a better quality of life, the ASPCA’s Government Relations department works on legislation that seeks to improve the health, safety and well-being of all New York City carriage horses while they are on the streets.
The ASPCA also voluntarily monitors the carriage horses in Central Park, with Humane Law Enforcement Agents issuing citations for infractions and investigating allegations of abuse and neglect.
Our Agents rely on concerned citizens to report incidents or issues they may witness regarding the care and conditions of NYC's carriage horses. The following tips will help you report suspected carriage horse problems:
- The two most important pieces of information to provide are the time of the incident and the carriage license plate, a 4-digit number located on the back of the carriage. With the time and number, we can track down the horse and driver involved.
- Other helpful information can include: color of horse, color of carriage, location of incident and hoof brand number of horse.
To report carriage horse cruelty or neglect, contact us at email@example.com or 877-THE-ASPCA (843-2772).
- If you are a resident of NYC, show your support by contacting your Councilmember and asking him or her to support Intro. 86, the humane and safe alternative to the carriage horse industry.
- If you are from out of town, please write to the mayor to voice your concern, and stay involved by visiting our website at ASPCA.org.
- If you witness any abuse of a carriage horse, write down the license plate number found on the back of the carriage, the time and location, along with the color of the horse or any distinguishing markings, and, if possible, the horse's hoof number, which is branded on the front left hoof. Then call 877-THE-ASPCA (843-2772) to report it.
To stay up-to-date on important calls to action, visit the ASPCA Advocacy Center.