Charleston carriage horse doing well, on vacation, after fall downtown


CHARLESTON, SC – Friday, July 17, a carriage horse named Blondie fell in downtown Charleston after being spooked by a cement truck on East Bay. Officials maintain that the incident was not heat related.

Old South Carriage Company confirmed that 9 adults and 1 child were aboard the carriage along with one of Old South’s tour guides, when the horse fell. No injuries were reported.

A veterinarian arrived around 11 a.m. and gave the horse IV fluids. Several people assisted the horse in rolling over to drink water.

A harness was place underneath the horse to lift it up. Around 12:15 p.m. the horse was lifted and was standing on its own again.

According to The Old South carriage Company Blondie will rest for 30 days at a 65 acre plantation on Johns Island, Sugah Cain Plantation.

Please refer to the Old South Carriage Co. Facebook page for more information. South Carriage Company released this statement about Blondie:

“We are happy to report that Blondie is OK! We are thrilled with the immediate response of our team today in the emergency situation. This was not a heat-related incident. Blondie was spooked from a cement truck on East Bay and fell down due to being frightened in the moment. Dr. Sally Banner Brown from Edisto Equine Clinic was on scene shortly after the incident. After resting for a little while, Blondie got up and he was able to walk onto the trailer by himself. He is spent the night at the veterinary clinic as a precautionary measure.” – Ashley Cline, Old South Carriage Company

Dr. Sally Banner Brown from Edisto Equine Clinic gave this update on Blondie: 

“Blondie is doing fine! Blondie’s vitals were completely normal even when he was laying down after the incident. We want everyone to know that this was definitely not a heat related, and only an accident. Blondie walked away soundly and is doing fine!” – – Dr. Sally Banner Brown from Edisto Equine Clinic

Charleston Animal Society raises concerns about horse-drawn wagons downtown. Calls for independent review:

Charleston Animal Society expressed concern about the safety of both humans and animals involved in the practice of horse-drawn wagons in downtown Charleston following another accident this morning. Initial media and police reports suggest that a horse was spooked by a cement mixer truck, then collapsed onto the hot pavement, and was unable to stand until heavy machinery was brought in to lift the horse to its feet. “Citizens began contacting Charleston Animal Society this morning after the incident occurred and we immediately contacted City of Charleston Police Dept. Animal Control to ensure there was an expedient response,” stated Joe Elmore, Charleston Animal Society’s Chief Executive Officer. “We are calling for an independent review of today’s accident. We have an ongoing concern for the health and welfare of, not only this horse, but all of the horses that are pulling wagons downtown. We are equally concerned about the safety of both residents and visitors in our city when they are walking the streets and riding in the wagons. We hope that the horse recovers, but the horse nor the citizens and tourists, should have been placed in harm’s way in the first place.” Full details of the accident are not available at this time. “Charleston Animal Society is calling for a complete and transparent review of the accident and the horse’s medical condition leading up to and following the incident As South Carolina’s first and oldest animal organization, along with being accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), the Animal Society is qualified and requests to participate in an independent review of the accident due to the City of Charleston’s financial relationship with the horse-drawn wagon vendors,” stated Elmore. Charleston Animal Society is not opposed to the use of horses and other equines in pulling carts and carriages for hire, provided that all of the animals’ physiological and behavioral needs are fully met, housing and stable conditions are humane and their working hours and conditions are carefully regulated and independently monitored as to temperature, humidity, proximity to traffic, rest periods, etc. Working equines should receive regular veterinary and farrier care and be provided a humane retirement when no longer able to work. “We are saddened to see another accident involving horse-drawn wagons in downtown Charleston and remain committed to ensuring that horses and all animals in our community are treated humanely and that situations such as this are prevented in the future,” stated Elmore.

PETA Senior Vice President Dan Mathews in response to the recent fall of Blondie, a 12-year-old horse used to pull carriages in Charleston:

Busy city streets are no place for horses, who are easily spooked by loud noises and commotion, so it should come as no surprise that Blondie’s collapse reportedly followed a scare. As temperatures in Charleston soared into the high 80s, temperatures where hoof meets pavement likely rose above 100 degrees. Blondie languished on that pavement for more than an hour before a crane was called in to lift him to his feet. This incident is yet another testament to the cruelty inherent in the horse-drawn carriage industry, which has been banned in cities from Salt Lake City to Biloxi, Mississippi, and from city centers in London, Mumbai, Paris, Toronto, and dozens of other cities around the globe. Charleston should act now and relieve Blondie and dozens of other suffering horses sothat they can recover at a reputable sanctuary.

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