Griffith Park Pony Rides within the Face of Backlash from Animal Rights Teams: Unique

Griffith Park Pony Rides have been a historic landmark in Southern California for many years. Annually, almost 160,000 youngsters go to the positioning which started working in 1948.

Now, proprietor Stephen Weeks is dealing with backlash from animal rights activists and the Los Angeles Animal Alliance (LAAA) group. Protesters have protested weekly in opposition to the rides and declare that the animals have been mistreated.

“Our objective is to cancel your contract and instantly take away all animals which can be aged and have to dwell their lives in consolation,” stated Zohra Fahim, founding father of the LAAA.

The group additionally says the 50 horses are overworked in scorching temperatures through the summer time months.

“We do not push our ponies rather a lot, it is often only a brief stroll within the ring a few occasions,” stated Weeks, who calls the allegations false.

“Now we have two vets available 24 hours a day to handle any veterinary wants they may have. Now we have a farrier out right here each week to take care of their toes. We handle our ponies,” he stated.

The animals and property have undergone quite a few rigorous inspections by Los Angeles officers. In January, after receiving a number of calls complaining of animal abuse throughout pony rides, metropolis council members Nithya Raman and Paul Koretz filed a movement asking for a third-party evaluation of the power.

“The Division of Recreation and Parks and the Division of Animal Companies frequently went to examine the power and located no violations,” the movement stated.

The movement continues saying, “In response to considerations expressed by residents and animal rights teams, nevertheless, RAP has initiated a course of to interact a third-party equestrian skilled to overview and report on the operation’s insurance policies and practices to make sure the horses are effectively cared for. “

Households who take their youngsters on pony rides advised FOX 11 they’ve combined emotions about allegations of abuse by the protesters.

“I perceive what they’re saying. You possibly can learn an animal’s physique language. These animals do not look as blissful as those you see within the wild,” stated father or mother Wynord Thomas.

One other father or mother stated he would really like the demonstrators to not happen in entrance of the youngsters.

“I perceive the place they arrive from, however I do not know all of the details. Round youngsters, I do not assume protest is suitable. They’re simply youngsters, they do not know,” stated mom Victoria Lopez.

The Metropolis of Los Angeles has renewed its contract with Griffith Park Pony Rides permitting the power to function for a minimum of one other three years.

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