Police horses undergo training for such mentally and physically demanding situations. However, in the testing circumstances of serious unrest, a horse’s impulse would be to flee but they are prevented from doing so by severe physical restraint. Submissive control comes from the use of multi-pressure double-reined Pelham bits, which subject the horse to considerable pain in the mouth and on the head - should the horse try to resist. And spurs, forcibly applied, intimidate the horse into capitulation.
Says Animal Aid’s Horse Consultant, Dene Stansall:
‘Brutal methods have been used over centuries to force horses into violent battles. Today, horses remain as tools for crowd control by the police. It is time for this animal abuse to stop and for horses no longer to be used in what is essentially a dispute between two groups of people.’