Horror as horse faints in busy Maltese street

This is the shocking moment when a horse fainted in the middle of a busy Maltese street.

The poor animal is believed to have collapsed from heat exhaustion.

The upsetting images have gone viral on social media and led to calls for ‘karozin’ rides to be banned in the summer months.

The accident happened near Porte des Bombes in Pieta on Saturday afternoon as Malta sizzled in temperatures feeling as hot as 38°C.

Two eyewitnesses who were stranded in traffic said the horse stopped suddenly and couldn’t put one foot in front of the other before falling over.

Jop Houtman Camara, who took the photos, posted on Facebook: ‘We witnessed this exhausted poor horse laying on the ground.

‘The driver tried to force the horse to stand up but it couldn’t.

‘It was probably dehydrated after standing it the burning sun for hours without water.’

A protest will be held at 12.30pm on Saturday 11 August in Valletta, calling for horse cabs to be banned from the roads.

‘Karozzin’ rides are popular with tourists in places such as Valletta and Mdina.

However, one animal rights campaigner posted on Facebook: ‘If you are a tourist visiting Malta do these horses a favour, do not ride the karozzini.

‘These horses spend days in the boiling sun waiting to be driven around.

‘There are lots of ways to explore and enjoy beautiful Malta riding a karozzin is not one of them.’

Others said ‘karozzin’ rides were a Maltese tradition.

One man wrote: ‘I have never seen a horse ill treated.

‘It’s part of Maltese tradition and good for tourism.

‘Having said that the government should provide better shelter and more water for the horses.’