Is it illegal to ride a horse as my primary mode of transportation in the US?
I'm not kidding. Does anyone know? Or know how I can find out? My horse is cheaper to keep than paying over $4/gal for gas, not to mention all the registration fees, inspection fees, etc.
It is generally not illegal to ride a horse (unless its a highway or something) but it might not be the riding that becomes an issue. I.e once you're at your destination what are you going to do with the horse while you're running your errand? I am fairly certain most areas would not allow a horse to be "parked" at the grocery store! Also if you use a buggy there are some legal things you have to do to drive it on the road - I think the key one is to have an orange reflector on the back warning upcoming cars.
Try contacting the mounted police, if your state has such a division. While they have certain permissions, they might be able to tell you if you will able to ride as a regular citizen.
Also in cities such as New York and Philadelphia there are horse and carriage rides downtown as a norm. If you can look up any such companies in your state or the barns they get their horses from, you might learn some information.
But in all cases I think the Department of Transportation would give the final say on all rules.
Personally, I hate cars. I am also quite Victorian and have always wanted to have an old-fashioned decorative horse and buggy -- the kind you see in Currier and Ives paintings. I think it's a shame we use clunky automated metal objects to get around. Good luck in your quest.
Hmm, no mounted police that I know of. Maybe in Philly. Guess I should contact the dept of transportation. They'll probably think I'm nuts! it's a nice idea to drive around a buggy for carriage, but those things are expensive, and so is the harness!
Answering your question with a question of sorts: Don't the Amish still go by buggy and horse? Maybe they don't actually go in town though. I'm not sure.
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