IVSA Animal Welfare Committee Post#33: Carriage Horses

Especially in the western world, horse-drawn carriages often shape the cityscapes and are seen as a part of their tradition. These tourist attractions are widely promoted carried out at the expense of the animals.

carriage horse welfare

Urban carriage horses suffer from a range of different issues:
First, walking on hard ground all day everyday does great harm to their joints and hooves, even when they are properly shod. The American Veterinary Medical Association recommends that horses be periodically maintained on soft surfaces (i.e., pasture), to avoid damage and facilitate circulation within the hoof (AVMA Urban Horse Fact Sheet, 2014) (1). But most carriage horses barely ever get this kind of “holidays” and have no regular access to pasture in most urban settings.

In addition to this, the animals have to struggle with air pollution, leading to many respiratory conditions, including bronchitis, rhinitis, inflammatory airway disease, and reactive airway disease. Furthermore, they are exposed to high levels of noise, which is extremely stressful for animals, which have a natural flight response. In cities like New York, carriages have to fight their way through hundreds of cars and people, sometimes leading to horrible accidents when the horses start panicking.

The weather also has a huge impact on the horses’ welfare. Hot, humid or very cold conditions impede the animals’ hard work even more. Especially in combination with too little excess to water, it has already happened several times that carriage horses collapsed in the middle of the street.

Urban carriage horses are purely a tourist attraction—not a necessity. Given the many documented health and welfare issues for the horses, the only sensible solution is to ban them from use. Slowly the laws for using horse-drawn carriages are getting stricter but it is on us to achieve a complete ban of urban horse carriages as tourist attractions.


Call for a host for the 2nd IVSA Animal Welfare conference, 2018

DEADLINE 15th of April

The first edition of the IVSA Animal Welfare Conference (IAWC) was held in Utrecht, The Netherlands from the 22nd to the 24th of April 2016. IVSA ExCo is now looking for a Member Organization interested and feeling capable of hosting the second edition of the IAWC.

Summary and more information?
• What and when?
o Ability to host at least 100 international students for Friday, Saturday and Sunday + Approximately 20 international speakers (hotels)
o Venue with at least one room in which all delegates will fit, plus multiple rooms for workshops
o Accommodation where all delegates can stay together
o Fee of approximately €100 (incl. meals, transportation and accommodation) for students
o Taking place in March/April 2018 or September/October 2018
• More information?
o Email to

call for 2nd AWC host


StopTB Day

TODAY is Stop Tuberculosis Day
Yes, TB is more of an issue with cattle and badgers here in the UK. Yet 1.5 MILLION people in other parts of the world DIE each year from this curable disease. IVSA and the pharmaceutical and medical students’ equivalent organisations (IPSF and IFMSA), have collaborated to publish articles written by students like you, in order to raise awareness about this ever-present epidemic. Some of these were published by the StopTB Partnership and their Global Plan to End TB can be read by clicking the link below


Please share this with your friends to educate others so we can all unite to #StopTB! End TB events are happening across the globe today.

If in London or the Wirral, there are events being held in these cities:

Registration for the 8th IVSA Asia Conference 2017 in Indonesia is now open!


Malang & Surabaya, August 7th – 13th 2017

Registration deadline: February 18th, 17.00 (GMT).

Bali, August 13th – 16th 2017

With various lectures, workshops, social activities and tours you don’t wanna miss (Reptile necropsy, cooking workshop, traditional dance workshop, one health lecture and many more).

8th IVSA Asia Conference

Conference: 300€ (Not included flight tickets or VISA if needed)Post conference (optional) : 270€ (included flight ticket from Surabaya to Bali)Click on the link to register!

*for more information about the facilities and itinerary, please kindly visit our page;

Thank you and See you in Indonesia!

#RoadtoIVSAAsiaConference #8thIVSAAsiaConference#IVSAIndonesia

Dates for the 66th IVSA Symposium have been confirmed!


With great excitement we can officially announce that the dates for the 66th IVSA Symposium, will be from the 29th of December 2017 until the 7th of January 2018!
Get keen