Karozzin owner to face criminal action after necropsy result
● Excessive heat, heavy loads and steep route contributed to horse’s death
Parliamentary Secretary for Animal Rights Clint Camilleri has confirmed that a combination of excessive heat, heavy loads and the steep route contributed to the death of a horse pulling a karozzin earlier this month.
The Necropsy has finally concluded, and the Parliamentary Secretary said that Animal Welfare has filed a criminal complaint against the owner. “Animal abuses will not be tolerated,” he said.
The incident happened in St Francis Street, which leads up from the harbour to the War Memorial, at around 1pm on 8 August. Witnesses said that the horse stood on its hind legs and seconds later collapsed and died.
The karozzin was carrying tourists at the time. This was the second recent incident including the collapse of a horse, the first having seen a mare also pulling a karozzin collapse. The Animal Welfare Department examined that mare after its fall and concluded that it had not suffered from serious injuries and there was no sign of animal cruelty.
The police went on site and some traffic congestion was reported.
As a result of these incident as well as others in the past, a group of activists, some of them representing Animal Liberation Malta (ALM), had rallied at the Triton Fountain in Valletta to protest against the use of horse-drawn carriages.
In a statement about the horse’s death, both Camilleri and Environment Minister Jose Herrera said that no type of animal cruelty is acceptable, and as such acts like this should be condemned. In a statement, they said that the process to introduce new regulations regarding the use of karozzini within the context of animal welfare already started.
The legal provisions by which a criminal complaint was filed, the statement read, surround articles in the Animal Welfare Act which dictate that animals shall not be caused any unnecessary pain, suffering or distress and that “any person shall take such steps as are reasonable in all the circumstances to ensure that the needs of an animal for which he is responsible or for which he agrees to look after shall be met to the extent required by good practice and in pursuance to the good health and well-being of the animal.”
Witnesses said that the horse stood on its hind legs and seconds later collapsed and died