A carriage horse is said to have collapsed in New York City, according to a witness, drawing the ire of animal rights activists.
Photos of the horse laying on its side were uploaded to social media over the weekend. A man who claims to have photographed the incident told the New York Post that the driver of the carriage wasn’t in a rush to help the toppled horse.
The caretaker allegedly told the photographer, Bogdan Paul Angheluta, that the animal “tripped and fell.” The horse lay on the pavement on 50th Street and 12th Avenue for about 20 minutes earlier this month.
Angheluta said it was outside the Space Ibiza nightclub that he saw the driver “screaming for the horse to make the green light,” the Post reported.
“I’m 100 percent positive,” Angheluta added to The Post. “He was forcing him to make the light. The horse was tired.” He added that the horse was “breathing slow and hard.”
A police officer blocked off the intersection around the horse. About 10 minutes later, about “five or six guys came from the stables” with a bucket of water, and they warned Angheluta to “leave the horse alone,” according to the Post.
New York City-based animal activist group NYCLASS issued a statement on the Manhattan horse incident.
“Mayor de Blasio has epically failed our city’s gentle giants. This Mayor has said nothing about the injured horse, despite claiming that he’s an advocate for animals. His excuses for lack of action are lamer than an overworked carriage horse,” the statement read.
The group is calling on city officials “to allow an independent veterinarian to examine the horse, and calling on Mayor de Blasio to stop with the same old empty rhetoric and keep his promise to protect these horses.”
Christina Hansen, a spokeswoman for the city’s carriage industry, told Gothamist that the horse “didn’t collapse, he tripped himself…He’s kind of a klutz.”
Meanwhile, a Health Department spokesperson told the Post: “We found that the horse had tripped and fell.”