With temperatures expected to peak above 100 degrees today, the horses that pull tourist carriages through Old City have been given the day off.
City regulations require that the work horses be stabled when the mercury rises above 91.
At the 76 Carriage Company stables in Northern Liberties, a pair of horses walked through a set of sprinklers in a turnout yard while another was hosed down in front of a garage.
"I was just out playing with one under a sprinkler," said Eleanor Forstater, office assistant and carriage driver. "I'm soaking wet."
Twenty-one horses are stabled at the barn near 3rd Street and Girard Avenue. Today marked the sixth time this year they've been brought in early and the second day they have not taken out at all due to excessive heat.
The company takes additional measures to keep the horses cool, Forstater said.
"We put electrolytes in their water, it creates a Gatorade for horses," said Forstater. More hay is added to the feed mix and industrial-sized fans keep air circulating through the barn, she said.
"We're also setting up a misting system so when their in their stalls they'll be more comfortable," Forstater said.
Carriage drivers also took the day off, Forstater said. About eight drivers collected at the stable to spend time with their horses and stick around for an afternoon barbecue.
"Sometimes you look forward to these days," Forstater said. "We try to make it into a fun day for everyone, the horses and the staff."