Last summer, the city of Montreal passed into law a ban on horse-drawn carriages, known locally as calèches, that will come into effect at the end of 2019. The carriages, a feature of the Montreal Old Port and popular among tourists, are often criticized as inhumane. Viral images of a calèche horse that dropped dead in the Old Port last year only amplified such criticism.
Now, eight months before the ban becomes official, the city of Montreal is outlining its plan for the transition of caléche drivers and the future of their horses.
According to a press release, the horses will be placed under the care of the Montreal SPCA "with a view toward placing them in a shelter or adoptive families."
TL;DR The city of Montreal has outlined its plan for the transition of calèche owners and the future of their horses. With the help of the SPCA, horses will eventually be placed in shelters and with adoptive families.
The SPCA will manage all logistics, including the "transportation of horses to shelters."
"Owners will be able to register for the new program as of May 1, 2019 on the Montreal SPCA website and that of the City of Montreal."
The City of Montreal will moreover compensate calèche horse owners $1,000 to cover associated costs. The municipal, provincial, and federal governments are also collaborating to offer a session to "inform [calèche owners] about the reintegration process of the labor market and to assist them in their transition to a new job."
Details are few, but many will be relieved that the horses will eventually end up in good homes with caring owners.
A few lucky people with the experience and infrastructure to care for a horse may even get a chance to adopt one of the animals.
Refer to the SPCA website for forthcoming information.
Stay tuned for updates and more news about Montreal calèches.