A video showed a collapsed horse attached to a carriage trying desperately to get up in Melbourne. The video drew criticism as it showed the frustrated carriage driver kicking the horse on the back of her neck while calling her a "f***ing lazy b****". A veterinary nurse is seen trying to help the distressed animal while trying to stop the carriage driver from causing her more stress. Instead of condemning the abusive actions of the employee, the owner of the horse and carriage company defended his actions.
Dean Crichton, the owner of the collapsed horse, named Tuesday, agreed that the carriage driver should not have used abusive language towards the horse. However, that was the only criticism he had towards the driver he referred to as Wayne.
Crichton claimed that he had 100 horses which were used in rotation for carriage rides which are a popular tourist activity in Melbourne. According to the owner of the horses, animal rights activists have been at the throat of his company for years. He shared that animal rights activists often broke into their property to damage carriages and set their horses loose. The trauma of the onslaught has damaged his company and his family. Crichton's 24-year-old daughter had to get restraining orders to prevent animal rights activists from plaguing her.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, Crichton spoke out about the carriage driver who was vilified by the video. He recalled that he had taken the young boy under his wing 30-years ago and that he was "not the sharpest." Crichton claimed that under the stress of people shouting at him combined with Tuesday's collapse, Wayne had reacted badly. He claimed that the man was only giving the horse a "nudge." Tuesday had apparently not suffered any injury and had gone back to work within a day,
Veterinary nurse Krista Knight, a witness to the incident, had an entirely different take. Knight claimed that the fallen horse was pinned down as she was still strapped to the carriage. Even though bystanders were trying to help Wayne and Tuesday stay calm, Wayne became aggravated and abused the animal.
Knight pointed out that they only had to keep Tuesday calm and unstrap her from the carriage to allow her to get back up. Instead, Tuesday was left traumatised and bleeding from the mouth. Knight was also agitated by the fact that once the horse was back up, the driver did not check to see if she was injured. Wayne did not check her legs or give her water before re-strapping her to the carriage and forcing the exhausted animal to move on.