Just curious, is anyone on this forum a mounted police officer or know anything about them? What's the schooling like, how realistic is it to get this job (is it a selective position), what's a daily day on the job like? etc.
I am on the volunteer mounted patrol with my county. The officers had to go to a week class with their horses to get the initial certification, and then have to continue with different courses. The horses also have to be certified. They cam back and instructed our class, which was the exact same qualifications, except we don't carry guns. Our horses also had to pass initial qualifications, and then continue with more in the spring. I know you can't just become mounted police. You have ro go through the police acadamy and training just like normal road officers. Around here, so many people want to do it, that it is a very selective position. You have to have experience. We have to pay to take care of our own animals, but some patrols have irses already, and when you are assigned one, you are required to take care of it like its your own. From feeding twice a day, to mucking out stalls. Good luck!
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My father was a part of his cities Mounted Police, the main thing would be to think about is that the mounted police is like an extra criteria of becoming part of a police force. You would have to become a fully fledge officer, then get a job in a department that has a mounted unit, then get into the mounted patrol program AFTER you have done the other two. Its more of a secondary thing as far as I know.
My father's mounted unit was typically used during the summer or holidays, patrolling parking lots of fairs and malls. They did work with parades. Typically its just walking around on horseback, he never really had to deal with a riot or anything. Just sit in the saddle for a few hours.
Typically most police departments seem to be getting rid of their mounted patrol because its costly. Unless you want to work in a very major city like New York, San Francisco, San Diego and Sacramento (Only ones that I know have mounted units) My father's unit was disbanded shortly after he retired. That or they are relying on volunteer type units.
Some departments have their own horses, some require that you get your own or use another officers. Both horse and rider have to be certified, through training and tests. Training is typically working with crowds, basic control/handling and desensitizing.
Our county has a mounted police. But other then parking during fair etc.... Ya don't see em much. when horses are really needed in an emergency it's more volunteers then law.
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Last year I was able to work with the local mounted sheriffs patrol. My trainer is a sheriff so she got me in to see what it's like. I only did parades and practices with them. No search and rescue or actual patrols.
This particular group isn't very well organized and I don't think I plan on joining but it was fun to try it out for the experience. Also, these officers don't get paid. They are volunteers. They do get paid for their regular sheriffing duties but not for the mounted patrol stuff.
I would try to contact your local mounted patrol and ask if you can shadow them at a training session. Maybe ask them some questions about being in the mounted patrol and what it's like. It seems that there is a lot of variation in the mounted patrol depending on where you are located.
My small city in Florida always had mounted police downtown on weekends as crowd control for the drunks....
Dallas still has a mounted unit. You can read about them and see their horses/barn/etc at Dallas Police Department
Thanks for the replies everyone! I'm just exploring my options right now, but sounds like this wouldn't be the right job for me, as I plan to stay as far away as possible from the big cities like Horsesdontlie mentioned that still have mounted units. Seems like it would be an exciting job to have though.
Portland also has a mounted police unit Mounted Patrol Unit | Divisions | The City of Portland, Oregon
You'd almost definitely have to be in a city, but not necessarily the big cities that HDL listed
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