“The Mérida carriage horses need to go out to work so that they do not suffer stress due to inactivity”, assures Israel Torres Velázquez, leader of the Caleseros Union of Yucatan.
Torres Velázquez explained that animal advocates who criticize this activity “are not really aware that horses need activity for their own health. If they remain in the corral, they become numb, the union leader said. “If they are inactive, they do not have good digestion and develop muscle pains, which obviously causes damage to their health,” he explained.
In addition, he said, “the horses are happy to see and coexist with their other horse friends who work in the carriages”; Because “they work in a group and feel happy when they find a partner.”
“We see that when they meet at work, the horses neigh when they see each other; they communicate with their movements and sounds, it is incredible, how smart and social these animals are, and they need to see their coworkers, “he said.
Once again, Torres Velazquez denied the allegations of mistreatment. “It is not true, each horse works four hours per day, receives a medical check-up twice a year from specialists from the UADY Veterinary School. They all have adequate food and we take care of his hooves, which are like their shoes. ”
Even, as we reported today, the street vendors have already agreed to apply various measures to prevent coronavirus infections when they are allowed to return to the streets, including taking out their horses with face masks to protect them.
“The horses are used to earning their food and are educated for work in the tourist service,” he emphasized.
“The carriages are a tourist attraction in Mérida and many cities in Yucatan and the rest of Mexico. But not many cities in the world have this service,” stressed Torres Velázquez.
“The use of horse-pulled carriages in Yucatan is a tradition that goes all the way back to the time of the viceroyalty, the Spanish conquest and the golden age of henequen, “he added.
“I was reviewing the history of carriages and I learned that an organized group of “caleseros” was active back in 1886 in Merida, and the Unios of Caleseros has been affiliated with the CTM since 1912. At the time of the haciendas, carriages were the main means of transportation and it is still attractive to visitors tht come to Merida.
“Ex president Carlos Salinas de Gortari, Mexican famous actors such as Angelique Boyer and Alejandro Camacho, have traveled in the carriages accompanied by troubadours. As well as other Mexican celebrities such as Chabelo, Tatiana, “El Caballo” Rojas and famous athletes too”, he added.
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