Cart Horse Protection Association - Western Cape, Cape Town

The Cart Horse Association will rather respond to all calls of possible over load, than miss any possible abuse of cart horse.

Load Weight:
The average cart weighs approx. 200kg (a VW Golf body with nothing inside weighs approx. 300kg and a minibus body with nothing inside weighs approx. 600kg.

If the horse seems to be straining and seem to be �climbing on it�s toes� or fail to get the load and cart moving in 2/3 strides, or galloping with a loaded cart, the horse is pushed too hard and straining.

A horse of approx. 14/15 hands high CAN pull up to 1000kg, including the cart and driver � no problem (although not recommended). The average person weighs 60 � 80kg and children between +/- 35 � 50kg.

NOTE: Never confront the cart drivers, but call the CHPA emergency number: 082 6599 599.


Our Mobile Clinic responds to all call-outs. Weekends are restricted to veterinary emergencies only. The emergency number is 082 6599599. Punch this into your cellphone or keep it somewhere handy, just in case�

Do not give the cart horse owners/drivers cash for feed or shoes. If you would like to ensure that the working cart horses receive these services, support us with a donation. Last year, we put on 2218 sets of shoes, distributed 4540 bales of oat hay and 1200 bags of 10% horse meal at our clinics.

If you suspect abuse, ie. Cart horse in bad condition, lame, overloaded or being worked too hard call the emergency number and report the case.

When reporting the case take note of the following, the size and colour of the horse, any markings, road, area and direction that the cart horse is traveling, how many people on the cart and what they are wearing and description of the load, if any.

How do you know if a cart is over loaded? Here are some guidelines:
-Very small pony (10 � 11hh) � a maximum of 500kgs
-Small pony (11 � 12hh) � a maximum of 600kgs
-Medium pony (12 � 13hh) � a maximum of 750kgs
-Big pony and horses over 13hh � a maximum of 1000kgs.
The abovementioned guidelines include the cart, passengers and load.

Do not give a hot sweaty cart horse water, this can result in severe colic and can sometimes be fatal. The horse must be cool and breathing normally before it drinks water.

At this time of the year, winter going into summer, the cart horses still have their winter coats, due to this, even at a walk, they will sweat, this must not be mistaken for abuse and overworking. Rather take note of the horses breathing to ascertain the above. It should not be painting like a dog.

Do not get into a heated discussion with the cart horse owners; rather call the emergency number for our Mobile Clinic to deal with the situation.