The city’s carriage-horse industry could wind up as an issue in the 2013 mayoral race.
Two probable mayoral contenders — Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer — joined animal-rights activists at City Hall yesterday to demand a dozen added protections for the 210 horses that pull carriages in and around Central Park.
The protections include a wind- chill factor in determining when the horses could work.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, another mayoral hopeful, last week suggested that check-ups of the horses be conducted by vets independent of the industry, one of the activists’ demands.
But Quinn has yet to sign on to a bill that would replace the horses with vintage electric vehicles.
Asked if Quinn had gone far enough, Stringer said, “We’ll find out.”
De Blasio conceded that his own views on the topic had evolved.
“A couple of years ago, I was unconvinced [about replacing the horses],” he said. “I’ll be honest. I sort of took a traditionalist’s view of the importance and symbolism of the horse carriages.
“The more I saw what the horses were going through, the more concerned I got.”
Quinn declined immediate comment on the latest proposal, which was backed by the ASPCA, saying she hadn’t seen it.
By David Seifman