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Utah Carriage-Horse Alert

August 29, 2013 | Horse Carriages / Take Action

Open Letter to Salt Lake City Mayor Becker and City Council:

Release Carriage Horses From A Life of Misery

August 28, 2013,


Dear Mayor Becker and City Council,

Friends of Animals, a non-profit advocacy organization founded in 1957, with many thousands of supporters, strongly urges you to ban horse-drawn carriages in Salt Lake City.

The public uproar following the August 17th collapse and death of Jerry -- a horse forced to pull a carriage in downtown traffic in extreme heat -- highlights the pressing need to shut down a dangerous industry that can’t be humanely regulated. Jerry’s owners released misleading photos claiming Jerry was in good health when the opposite was true. Moreover, questions about Jerry’s health and insufficient veterinary care are alarming.

An investigation is warranted, but meanwhile, Friends of Animals is requesting Salt Lake City officials remove horses from Salt Lake City streets. Horse sanctuaries are available after they’re released.

There is simply no way to improve the carriage horse industry in an urban environment in the 21st Century. Inherently skittish horses are a constant public safety risk on chaotic city streets.  There’s a voluminous list of serious accidents involving collisions with horse-drawn carriages and vehicles, resulting in severe injuries and deaths for people and horses.  Confining horses daily between the shafts of carriages, forcing them to pull heavy carriages loaded with passengers on city streets among swerving vehicles, constant loud noises, pedestrians, bike-riders and emergency vehicles is a recipe for disaster.  Horses, naturally skittish animals, flee when frightened. You have the ability to make Salt Lake City a more humane city by removing an antiquated commercial industry that creates a life of misery for horses, while putting others at risk.

Friends of Animals is eager to advise you further on selecting sanctuaries that can receive the horses. We were instrumental in crafting the legislation currently pending in the New York State Senate to ban horse-drawn carriages in New York City. The bill requires horses to be placed at appropriate sanctuaries—sparing them the fate of a slaughterhouse. We’ve led the movement to eliminate horse-drawn carriages in urban environments around the country. Salt Lake City should join the growing list of cities that have prohibited horse-drawn carriages from city streets knowing this trade has no place in modern society.

Take Action For Salt Lake City Horses

Contact Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker and the City Council and press them to end the dangerous, cruel horse-drawn carriage industry and release each horse to a sanctuary. 

Mayor Ralph Becker: 801-535-7705;

City Council

Kyle LaMalfa, Chair
Council Member District 2

Jill Remington Love, Vice Chair
Council Member District 5

Carlton Christensen
Council Member District 1

Stan Penfold
Council Member District 3

Luke Garrott
Council Member District 4

Charlie Luke
Council Member District 6

Søren Simonsen
Council Member District 7

Main Council Office Number

24 Hour Comment Line


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Please save these poor horses.