Animal Welfare

Monsters of New York and other Big Cities

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Every year, the list of accidents involving horse-drawn carriages grows, and horses continue to endure pain and suffering because of this outdated practice. The only way to end this cruelty is to ban it permanently and give these horses the freedom that they deserve.

Forcing horses to pull oversized loads isn’t romantic—it’s cruel. Horses are forced to toil in all weather extremes, dodge traffic, and pound the pavement all day long. These gentle animals suffer from respiratory ailments because they breathe in exhaust fumes, and they develop debilitating leg problems from walking on hard surfaces. In some cases, horses have even dropped dead from heatstroke after working in scorching summer heat and humidity.

Accidents Waiting to Happen

Horses are extremely sensitive to loud noises and unexpected sounds—and busy city streets have plenty of both. Horses and people have been seriously hurt—with some injuries resulting in fatalities—when horses have become spooked and run amok.

There have also been countless incidents in which carriages have been hit by impatient or careless drivers. Accidents have occurred in nearly every city where carriage rides are allowed.images

There is no way that cities, with their exhaust fumes, hard road surfaces, and busy traffic patterns can provide a humane … environment for a carriage horse.

Abused ‘Til Their Dying Day

Horses are afforded no federal protection under the Animal Welfare Act, so the responsibility of looking out for horses’ welfare falls to local animal control officials. But anti-cruelty laws provide few safeguards to horses, and many humane authorities just don’t have the resources or the time to monitor horse-drawn carriages in order to ensure that horses are not being overworked and that operators are following regulations.

When horses grow too old, tired, or ill to continue pulling heavy loads, they aren’t retired to green pastures and loving homes, as many people are led to believe. It’s cost-prohibitive to maintain a permanent sanctuary for the countless numbers of horses who break down in this industry. Instead, many worn-out horses are slaughtered and turned into food for dogs or for carnivores in zoos, or else they’re shipped overseas for human consumption.

What You Can Do

If you live in a city where carriage rides are still allowed, contact your local legislators to ask if they will sponsor a ban. Many cities—including Biloxi, Mississippi; Camden, New Jersey; Palm Beach, Pompano Beach, Key West, and Treasure Island, Florida—have already banned horse-drawn carriages.

Take action now and sign the petition!

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Sunburned Dolphin

#sunburneddolphins #mgmhotels #miragehotel
Tell MGM Resorts That Dolphins Don’t Belong In The Desert (And That They Shouldn’t Do Yoga Either)
By Stephen Messenger

The MGM-owned Mirage Hotel and Casino may be one of the more recognizable names on the Las Vegas strip — but this carefully-constructed fantasyland getaway is host to a little-known, yet completely disturbing reality for ten animals who are held as living props for the resort’s Polynesian theme.

For the last two decades, the Mirage has kept bottlenose dolphins in two open-air pools tucked away on the hotel grounds. A few times a day, they are made to perform tricks for small crowds of guests, though mostly they swim restlessly, without stimulation and only little respite from the sun’s intense rays and the desert’s scorching heat.

Some show outward signs of disease; others exhibit compulsive behavior suggesting their cruel captivity has taken a profound psychological toll as well. And then there are the deaths.

Since the dolphin pools first opened at the Mirage in 1990, twelve of twenty-two dolphins have died — a mortality rate of 55 percent — mostly from conditions attributable to the stresses of their wholly unnatural setting.

In a twist of bitter irony, given the animals’ wanton conditions, the Mirage even offers Yoga With Dolphins, allowing paying guests to unwind with the discomfortable captives.

According to Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project, the governing body which oversees animal welfare in the U.S. has largely neglected to inspect the Mirage’s animal facilities.

Perhaps sensing a potential blowback for their keeping of dolphins in captivity, particularly as scrutiny grows towards more well-known marine parks, even the resort does little to promote this offering, leaving many hotel guests unaware that dolphins are held there at all.

But now the word is out, and it’s spreading.

Join the Free The Mojave Dolphins movement by taking action here: for MGM to close the Mirage’s dolphin pools of death.

The Mirage Hotel’s dolphin program has earned itself the nickname “Dolphin Death Pool” — and that’s exactly what it is. The luxury resort’s captive dolphins are suffering from high mortality rates, cramped quarters and the harmful effects of the Mojave Desert’s scorching heat. Please join us in pressuring the Mirage Hotel to phase out their dolphin program . #MGMDolphinBan

Take action here

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