Horse-drawn carriages are cruel and inhumane. Horses are forced to work in congested city traffic, living nose-to-tailpipe existences, and denying the horses natural behaviors such as daily turn-out or pasture time to graze, roll, and socialize freely on grass, which equine veterinarians agree is needed daily for horses to live healthy lives. As flight animals, horses can be easily spooked and cause accidents that inflict great damage to vehicles, drivers, and most often, the horses themselves; some horses have even died from these injuries. After they work the busy and unsafe streets of New York City, the horses are often sold to auctions in Pennsylvania where they can be - and are - sold to kill-buyers who transport the animals to Mexico or Canada to be brutally slaughtered for exported meat.
Phasing out the use of horse carriages and replacing them with 21st Century "Horseless eCarriage" for current carriage drivers is one possible solution that will preserve employment for everyone in the industry. No one is losing a job -- they are simply moving to a modern, humane alternative. There are viable alternatives to NYC horse drawn carriages that will avoid the safety and quality of life issues currently faced by New York City's residents and its horses. In partnership with the ASPCA, NYCLASS commissioned The Creative Workshop in Dania Beach, Florida to design and create a fully electric, vintage-replica vehicle prototype to replace the horse drawn carriages. These electric cars can provide rides for tourists, offer jobs to workers currently in the horse carriage industry with the potential for higher wages, and maintain the historic and romantic feel of the tours.