Last call is coming up.
The ban on the carriages, which have been around since the 18th Century, ends a battle between animal rights activists and the businessmen who ply their trade from the big seat behind the horses.
Earlier this month, a judge refused to grant last a ditch request by a stable owner to suspend the City of Montreal’s that officially takes effect on Jan. 1.
The owners had wanted to work through the Christmas holidays, a time when they said they did good business in their carriages decorated in red ribbon and fir branches.
The backlash against the use of the horse-drawn calèches has been building for nearly a decade as concern grew about the animals’ welfare.
It escalated in recent years following a series of incidents involving calèche horses being adversely affected by summer heat.
Calèche owners have long said their horses are well cared for and maintain animal activists are putting them out of business.
This past April the city said it would pay the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals $1,000 for each horse offered a refuge or a family.
By mid-December, just one application to join the program had been filed.
The City of Montreal says is is working on a retraining program to help the calèche drivers and owners transition to other tourist jobs.
With files from CBC, RCI, CTV