Gym Owner Pumps Up the Pressure to Get Horses off City Streets

Published by PETA.

After hearing Christine Quinn defend (yet again) New York City’s cruel horse-drawn carriage trade on the Morning Joe talk show, PETA supporter David Barton—who owns the überpopular David Barton gyms—dashed off an e-mail to the New York City Council Speaker reminding her that unlike other New Yorkers, the horses who are forced to pull heavy carriages don’t even have the option of stretching out their sore limbs after a grueling day’s work.

I’m sure we agree that Manhattan’s tight spaces make exercise crucial in order for New Yorkers to lead a healthy lifestyle. Only a dumbbell would differ. But after seeing you on Thursday’s Morning Joe, I’m shocked that you can’t recognize the cramped working and living conditions and painful lack of exercise afforded the city’s most bedraggled residents: the 220 horses used to lug carriages. Pulling heavy carriages is strenuous work, but it doesn’t allow the horses a chance to gallop freely as nature intended.

Horses are forced to pull heavy loads in all weather extremes for nine hours—or more—a day. Many suffer from respiratory ailments from constantly inhaling exhaust fumes and develop debilitating leg problems from walking on hard surfaces. When they’re not working, they’re warehoused in cramped stalls caked with mud and feces that, quips Barton, “make even the tiniest Hell’s Kitchen studio look luxurious.”

What You Can Do

Please join PETA, David Barton, Alec Baldwin, Miley Cyrus, Lea Michele, and other compassionate people in calling for New York City to retire horse-drawn carriages and replace them with animal-and tourist-friendly horseless carriages.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind