Horse-Drawn Carriage Controversy Hits Memphis

(Memphis) Christian Dollar and his horse, Lightning, know every inch of Main Street.

“It’s a great way to see any city, even going through Starry Nights it was better than the cars,” said Dollar.

Dollar and many others are keeping an eye on what’s happening in New York City, where horse after horse have gotten spooked by all the traffic in the middle of Manhattan.

It’s led to protests and carriage rides now banned in the Big Apple, and sparked a national debate on the humanity of pulling tourists through busy streets.

“You cannot put a horse in traffic without extensive training. Our horses are taught to pay attention, but not react to an ambulance, bus, a concrete mixer,” said Jake Schorr, a local carriage company owner.

Schorr first brought horse-drawn carriages to Memphis 35 years ago. He said this country was built on horses.

Memphis saw a horse scare near the Peabody in recent years, but Schorr says there are more horses here than anywhere else with little to no problems.

Most tourists call New York’s move extreme.

“It’s a horse, it’s no strain for him to pull this carriage. They’re very strong,” said Randall Eller of Little Rock.

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