Shocking incident

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#1
Phoenix
622 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
I am currently on the Viking Embla Budapest to Bucharst. Today the included tour was the town of Kalocsa, Hungary, and a trip to BakodPutza for a horse show. After the horse show two of us wandered out back behind the barn and saw one of the horsemen mercilessly beating one of the horses who was harnessed to a wagon. The horse started bucking and trying to get away, but couldn't. When he stopped protesting, the guy started whipping him again-for no reason. We were horrified to see the beautiful animals being treated this way. When another employee saw that we were watching, he walked over and calmed the horse down. When the incident was reported, the owner gave a very weak excuse, but it didn't hold up.
Several of the horses in the barn had their ribs showing, which indicated that all is not right with the way these animals are being treated. Viking cruise line needs to take a closer look at this tour and reevaluate if it should be retained. Any tour provider that is cruel to animals should not be supported by any cruise line. It certainly ruined the whole experience for us!
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ciao for now, travelinjudy


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#2
3,885 Posts
Joined May 2009
I sure hope Viking is reading your report. Be sure and write on your comment card on the ship also! Did you also share with the CD.

Very sad!
#3
florida
3,649 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
fear many animals in any type production,zoo,circus,etc.are often abused.I prefer to skip these shows,in fact,we have cruise next June that goes to same one and plan to ask about animal treatment during excursion talk.But will NOT GO, just on principle.I know it does nothing to help,but makes ME feel better that I m not promoting this awful behavior in any way.
Agree,let Viking know.It MIGHT help,I HOPE.
#4
1,699 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
The only difference between what you saw in this instance and any other similar shows somewhere like Romania is that the others may keep things better hidden.

When we travel it is always difficult to remember that what we might consider normal acceptable behavior is not going to be the same everywhere else, the wider we travel the more we may see that we would find upsetting.

Treatment of working animals, especially horses is going to be very different, especially in a country where horses have a significant role in the meat industry as well.

We tend to avoid supporting 'shows' involving trained animal performances, the same way we would never go to see captive marine mammals perform or be forced into close human contact.

Well worth letting Viking know what you saw, but don't expect the local authorities to share your outrage and certainly don't imagine that a different animal show can be used without the same going on, but perhaps better hidden from view ...
#5
372 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
Originally posted by Mark_T
The only difference between what you saw in this instance and any other similar shows somewhere like Romania is that the others may keep things better hidden.

When we travel it is always difficult to remember that what we might consider normal acceptable behavior is not going to be the same everywhere else, the wider we travel the more we may see that we would find upsetting.

Treatment of working animals, especially horses is going to be very different, especially in a country where horses have a significant role in the meat industry as well.

We tend to avoid supporting 'shows' involving trained animal performances, the same way we would never go to see captive marine mammals perform or be forced into close human contact.

Well worth letting Viking know what you saw, but don't expect the local authorities to share your outrage and certainly don't imagine that a different animal show can be used without the same going on, but perhaps better hidden from view ...
I agree. However it was the best show during our cruise. It'll be very sad it Viking cancels it. There is literally nothing to see in Kalosca.
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#6
california
1,505 Posts
Joined Mar 2011
If that is the best that Kolasca can present especially when animal cruelty was witnessed...skip that city and let them know why!!
Witnessing abuse and then someone able to say it was the "best show" after knowing that.......Disgusting!!!
#7
372 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
Originally posted by lahlah57
If that is the best that Kolasca can present especially when animal cruelty was witnessed...skip that city and let them know why!!
Witnessing abuse and then someone able to say it was the "best show" after knowing that.......Disgusting!!!
The show has nothing to do with animal cruelty. Maybe we should stop going to let's say circus or zoo now?
There is an employee who should bear responsibility for his cruelty to horses.
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AT SEA: 16 cruises
RIVER:
2011 -- Viking Sun 'Rhine Getaway'
2012 -- Viking Primadonna 'Passage to Eastern Europe'
2013 -- Viking Odin 'Tulips & Windmills'
2013 -- Viking Lomonosov 'Footsteps of the Cossacks'
2013 -- Viking Spirit 'Paris & the Heart of Normandy'
2014 -- Viking Schumann 'Elegant Elbe'
2014 -- AMA Waterways 'Melodies of the Danube'
2014 -- Viking Hemming 'Portugal's River of Gold'
2015 -- American Eagle 'Lower Mississippi'
2016 -- Viking Forseti 'Chateaux, Rivers & Wine'
2016 -- Mekong Navigator 'Mekong River Cruise with Saigon & Siem Reap'
------- Next Up -----

------- Email me here: [email protected]
#8
512 Posts
Joined Dec 2008
thanks for the warning. we avoid animal shows that have the potential to exploit any animal. sadly even people can be poorly treated in some countries.
it would not entertain or amuse us to see such a show. if more people avoided such events animals would not be used in such a way.

horses are such beautiful and noble creatures they deserve better. for a good example of how well they can be treated go to vienna and see the spanish riding school. a performance not a practice. need to book in advance but fabulous.
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#9
Ontario, Canada
2,733 Posts
Joined Nov 2008
Originally posted by pully8
thanks for the warning. we avoid animal shows that have the potential to exploit any animal. sadly even people can be poorly treated in some countries.
it would not entertain or amuse us to see such a show. if more people avoided such events animals would not be used in such a way.

horses are such beautiful and noble creatures they deserve better. for a good example of how well they can be treated go to vienna and see the spanish riding school. a performance not a practice. need to book in advance but fabulous.
We saw this show earlier this year, and did not witness any cruelty to the horses. In fact, the animals did not appear thin, or poorly treated. We did wander through one of the barns - and except for the fact that the stall areas were a bit smaller than I have been used to (I did spend some time on a farm growing up....) there was nothing that would lead me to think that there was any mistreatment.

It is quite distressing to think that there is someone who was mistreating the animals on this farm. I am not convinced that boycotting the show would make the difference you were hoping for, however, as the family relies on the income to make a living --> and to cut the visits from Viking only adds an extra stress to the environment.

I hope that the OP will make a comment to the people at Viking. And, I hope that Viking will take the report seriously and discuss it with the people at the show. It may be one employee - and the people at the venue should realize that having this type of employee on staff could affect the income from their show.

One thing we did notice on our trip was how hard the people in the countries are working to pull themselves out of a financial "hole" that is not (for the most part) of their making. To make a decision to stop visiting the show - without giving the family the opportunity to "make things right" - is just another hit to them...

Just my thoughts here...

Fran
#10
Saint Simons Island, Georgia
11,354 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
I hate to read about cruelty to animals. My Grandfather in Texas had a ranch and a horse for the grandkids. We all learned to ride. I never saw a reason to beat a horse.
#11
Phoenix
622 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Originally posted by alexandra cruiser
fear many animals in any type production,zoo,circus,etc.are often abused.I prefer to skip these shows,in fact,we have cruise next June that goes to same one and plan to ask about animal treatment during excursion talk.But will NOT GO, just on principle.I know it does nothing to help,but makes ME feel better that I m not promoting this awful behavior in any way.
Agree,let Viking know.It MIGHT help,I HOPE.
I did report it to the Viking staff when we got back on board. She was stunned and upset, as well, and sent an e-mail about it to Viking.
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ciao for now, travelinjudy


Treasured memories:
GCT - Angkor Wat & Myanmar- Irrawaddy River Cruise -12-3-13
Azamara Journey -Singapore to Hong Kong 2-03-14
Celebrity Expedition Galapagos Islands 4-06-14
Celebrity Infinity - Buenos Aires to Valpariso to Ft. Lauderdale - 3-01-15 - B2B(cruise #55 -headed towards 60!)
Azamara Quest - Bali and Barrier Reef -12-22-2015
Azamara Quest - Cairns to Sydney -1-05-2016
Azamara Quest - Sydney to Auckland - 1-15-2016
Azamara Quest - Southhampton to Montreal -09-09-16
Azamara Journey-Chennai to Singapore - 11-17-16 #60!

On the horizon:

Azamara Quest - Miami to Barcelona - 04-02-2017
Azamara Journey- Fjords and the Arctic Circle - 06-23-2017
Azamara Quest -TA-11-4-2017
Azamara Quest - Caribbean- 11-20-1017
Azamara Quest - Miami to Lisbon - 4-07-2018-#65
Azamara Quest- Singapore to Perth -12-06-2018
AzamaraQuest -Perth to Melbourne 12-22-2018 -
#12
Phoenix
622 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Originally posted by lahlah57
If that is the best that Kolasca can present especially when animal cruelty was witnessed...skip that city and let them know why!!
Witnessing abuse and then someone able to say it was the "best show" after knowing that.......Disgusting!!!
I agree completely. I think anyone who attempts to justify animal cruelty under any circumstances can attempt to justify other cruelty -- to others, as well.
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ciao for now, travelinjudy


Treasured memories:
GCT - Angkor Wat & Myanmar- Irrawaddy River Cruise -12-3-13
Azamara Journey -Singapore to Hong Kong 2-03-14
Celebrity Expedition Galapagos Islands 4-06-14
Celebrity Infinity - Buenos Aires to Valpariso to Ft. Lauderdale - 3-01-15 - B2B(cruise #55 -headed towards 60!)
Azamara Quest - Bali and Barrier Reef -12-22-2015
Azamara Quest - Cairns to Sydney -1-05-2016
Azamara Quest - Sydney to Auckland - 1-15-2016
Azamara Quest - Southhampton to Montreal -09-09-16
Azamara Journey-Chennai to Singapore - 11-17-16 #60!

On the horizon:

Azamara Quest - Miami to Barcelona - 04-02-2017
Azamara Journey- Fjords and the Arctic Circle - 06-23-2017
Azamara Quest -TA-11-4-2017
Azamara Quest - Caribbean- 11-20-1017
Azamara Quest - Miami to Lisbon - 4-07-2018-#65
Azamara Quest- Singapore to Perth -12-06-2018
AzamaraQuest -Perth to Melbourne 12-22-2018 -
#13
Ontario, Canada
2,733 Posts
Joined Nov 2008
Originally posted by travelinjudy
I did report it to the Viking staff when we got back on board. She was stunned and upset, as well, and sent an e-mail about it to Viking.
It would be interesting to know if it goes any further....

Fran
#14
florida
3,649 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
crew member not enough.Who knows if email was really sent.To be on safe side, why don t YOU (OP)send email to Viking and ask for some response.Then let US know IF you get response,and details.
I think being pro active,determined by courteous,will prompt Viking to make some changes. Perhaps let horse show manager KNOW complaints made.
Will look forward to an update.Thanks for letting us know.
#15
Australia
1,149 Posts
Joined Jun 2013
Don't Viking read this forum. I would have expected a comment from them on the forum - that they were investigating the complaint as they know exactly which tour the OP is on.
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#16
florida
3,649 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
Originally posted by Stratheden
Don't Viking read this forum. I would have expected a comment from them on the forum - that they were investigating the complaint as they know exactly which tour the OP is on.
from your cruise list.
This is the company I m going on to horse show next yr.Sure HOPE its NOT the same one.Will check and definitely bring this up during pre cruise talks.
Pretty sure Viking READS this ,any action taken???
#17
Phoenix
622 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Originally posted by alexandra cruiser
from your cruise list.
This is the company I m going on to horse show next yr.Sure HOPE its NOT the same one.Will check and definitely bring this up during pre cruise talks.
Pretty sure Viking READS this ,any action taken???
I have been waiting to write, hoping to hear something from Viking. Besides informing a crew member, I wrote an e-mail to Viking, myself. I haven't heard a thing so far.. It's hard to believe they wouldn't respond to something like this. If I don't hear anything before, I will call them when I get home.
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ciao for now, travelinjudy


Treasured memories:
GCT - Angkor Wat & Myanmar- Irrawaddy River Cruise -12-3-13
Azamara Journey -Singapore to Hong Kong 2-03-14
Celebrity Expedition Galapagos Islands 4-06-14
Celebrity Infinity - Buenos Aires to Valpariso to Ft. Lauderdale - 3-01-15 - B2B(cruise #55 -headed towards 60!)
Azamara Quest - Bali and Barrier Reef -12-22-2015
Azamara Quest - Cairns to Sydney -1-05-2016
Azamara Quest - Sydney to Auckland - 1-15-2016
Azamara Quest - Southhampton to Montreal -09-09-16
Azamara Journey-Chennai to Singapore - 11-17-16 #60!

On the horizon:

Azamara Quest - Miami to Barcelona - 04-02-2017
Azamara Journey- Fjords and the Arctic Circle - 06-23-2017
Azamara Quest -TA-11-4-2017
Azamara Quest - Caribbean- 11-20-1017
Azamara Quest - Miami to Lisbon - 4-07-2018-#65
Azamara Quest- Singapore to Perth -12-06-2018
AzamaraQuest -Perth to Melbourne 12-22-2018 -
#18
Woodland Hills, CA
685 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Dear travelinjudy,

Our apologies for having just now seen your posts. We appreciate how proactive you have been in reporting this incident and while we’re confident that your feedback has been shared by your ship crew and by the team that received the email you sent, we wanted to let you know that we too have passed it along to the team who works with our local partners. We’ve asked our Customer Relations team to reach out to you to discuss your trip when you return home and in the meantime, if you would like to contact us directly, please know we’d be happy to hear from you at [email protected]. Aside from this upsetting incident, we do hope you have enjoyed the rest of your journey on Viking Embla.

Thank you for being our guest – and thank you again for alerting us.

Very best,
Viking Cruises


Originally posted by travelinjudy
I have been waiting to write, hoping to hear something from Viking. Besides informing a crew member, I wrote an e-mail to Viking, myself. I haven't heard a thing so far.. It's hard to believe they wouldn't respond to something like this. If I don't hear anything before, I will call them when I get home.
#19
Welland Ontario Canada
54 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Most river boat cruise lines visit this 'horse farm'. We saw the show while on the Avalon Prague to Bucharest cruise. It is terrible to know that the animals are treated this way but I really don't think every tour group or even just Viking cancelling this tour.
#20
Pacific NW / SW Florida / EU
441 Posts
Joined Feb 2012


please send me name of the tour and operator and location;


we have horse contacts right on the Austrian/Hungarian border who might be able do something meaningful about it ..
.
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