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'It’s really sad, man. You can tell that horse was not taken care of'
Heartbreaking footage of a carriage horse in New York City collapsing during rush hour traffic in Manhattan on Wednesday has sparked outrage against both the driver and the controversial practice of using horse-drawn carriages on busy city roads.
Bystanders watched in horror as a horse named Ryder collapsed onto the hot pavement and then the driver of the carriage reacted by repeatedly hitting the heat-exhausted animal and shouting, “Get up! Get up! C’mon, get up."
“I saw the horse collapse. He obviously was malnourished, dehydrated, hungry. The guy started whipping his horse and telling him to get back up instead of giving him water,” one witness told the New York Post. “It’s really sad, man. You can tell that horse was not taken care of. You can tell [the driver] was exploiting that horse."
Police officers soon arrived and hosed Ryder down in an apparent effort to help lower his body temperature.
\u201chorse in carriage collapses in Midtown Manhattan due to the hot weather \n\nhttps://t.co/JqrwaU8QXt\u201d— Viral News NY (@Viral News NY) 1660172207
The driver was accused of "kick[ing] up his feet" as he "sat in the shade texting, while police desperately tried saving Ryder the horse."
\u201cAfter beating his horse, carriage driver Ian McKeever kicked up his feet and sat in the shade texting, while police desperately tried saving Ryder the horse after he collapsed on #Manhattan street.\n\nTell @NYCSpeakerAdams to #BanHorseCarriages now: https://t.co/HwMJvOruaQ\u201d— Voters For Animal Rights (@Voters For Animal Rights) 1660230632
According to News 12 New York, Ryder was able to stand after about 45 minutes and was taken to a "private horse stable to receive proper veterinary care."
\u201cHORSE COLLAPSES IN NYC: Animal advocates, including PETA, are rallying today in #Manhattan after video went viral of a #horse collapsing in Midtown - https://t.co/IUDrjKbJmG\u201d— News 12 New York (@News 12 New York) 1660227322
New York City Council member Robert Holden used the opportunity to call attention to a bill he introduced last month that would replace horse-drawn carriages with electric carriages.
The Transport Workers Union, however, defended the practice of horse-drawn carriages in the city and claimed Ryder actually suffered from a "neurological disease caused by possum droppings."
\u201c@BobHoldenNYC The diagnosis of the equine veterinarian who examined Ryder is that he has EPM - a neurological disease caused by possum droppings. Please do not jump to conclusions before knowing the facts or talking to the carriage drivers\u2019 union. \n\nhttps://t.co/uiVao4YCAZ\u201d— Robert Holden (@Robert Holden) 1660171795
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