In case you wondered too: Seattle Police horse sightings

January 22, 2013 at 4:33 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle police | 33 Comments

(Photo courtesy Tammy Wooley, added 9:18 pm)
Several people called/texted/e-mailed to say they saw Seattle Police out on horseback on SW Barton within the past hour or so. So far, no photo – and when we went out looking for them, we couldn’t find them – but just in case you didn’t know, it’s not unusual to see them out and about, since the SPD horse force is based here in West Seattle, at Westcrest Park. We’ve reported sightings in the past, most often at Westwood Village (like this and this and this), where they’re taken for acclimation – they often show up at the summertime Picnic at the Precinct, too. As reported here two years ago, their funding was slated to be cut until the Seattle Police Foundation stepped in to help. P.S. If you saw them today and took a photo – we would love to share it – thanks!

33 Comments

  1. We saw them at Westwood Village today, but no cameras on us! Oh well :) They were very friendly and appeared to be training new officers in using the horses.

    Comment by Beth — 4:39 pm January 22, 2013 #

  2. Saw them riding along Fauntleroy just north of the ferry around 2-ish.

    Comment by JK in Shorewood — 4:51 pm January 22, 2013 #

  3. saw 4 horses and 4 helmeted police officers @ Westwood village. the newsbug in me failed to get a pic. They were near Starbucks.

    Comment by los arayas — 5:24 pm January 22, 2013 #

  4. Just wondering who is responsible for picking up their poop. I saw a pretty good trail of it in front of Bed Bath & Beyond (on the road not the sidewalk) but the horses/policemen were on the other side in front of Starbucks so it was probably sitting there for awhile.

    Comment by Lisa — 5:37 pm January 22, 2013 #

  5. I saw them heading east on Henderson at 18th. I wanted to pull up along the side of them and let them know there were at least three difference spots where the horses pooped all over the street. I hope they were responsible enough to go back and pick it up. After all, we have laws that tell us citizens to pick up after our pets, hope they do the same.

    Comment by Jodilyn — 6:17 pm January 22, 2013 #

  6. I saw them on Barton around 40th…wait…it was horse droppings I saw not the actual horses. But this article confirms it wasn’t a really big dog

    Comment by Lou — 6:45 pm January 22, 2013 #

  7. They were walking the beach path in Lincoln Park between 2:30 and 3:15 or so.

    Comment by Nancy — 6:58 pm January 22, 2013 #

  8. getting a really good laugh out of these comments, thanks :-)

    Comment by rob — 7:07 pm January 22, 2013 #

  9. Two years ago I discovered the “secret horse police headquarters” and some of the coolest bat boxes I’ve ever seen while geocaching around West Seattle. Looks like the cache is still active! http://coord.info/GC1V17M

    Comment by SudsyMaggie — 7:24 pm January 22, 2013 #

  10. I also would like to know about the poop thing. I encountered a scene at the location of “all over the parking lane and sidewalk” near the intersection of Barton & 41st at approximately 18:00. A search ensued but the “poo-petrators” were long gone. (Seriously though, SPD – gross!)

    Comment by jno — 7:54 pm January 22, 2013 #

  11. The police horse poopy does not get picked up to my knowledge, much like the horse poop on our ocean beaches that allow horse riding.I think the police and horse rental peeps should either have horsey collecting bags behind their horses or be responsible to pick it up, much worse than domestic dog poop,IMHO but both should be taken care of by the “owners” and not left fouling sidewalks, streets, beaches, water, etc.

    Comment by jwws — 8:23 pm January 22, 2013 #

  12. WSB, would you be able to find out from your SPD contacts what, if any, policy they have regarding picking up after their horses?

    Comment by rocky raccoon — 8:26 pm January 22, 2013 #

  13. The horses are awesome! And horse poop is much, much cleaner and less stinky than dog poop. That’s why you can throw it in the garden after it gets hot enough to kill the seeds in it. Dog poop, you can never use that for compost.

    Comment by AJP — 8:59 pm January 22, 2013 #

  14. When I was a kid in England, I often rode a pony along residential streets. If the pony pooped, someone usually came running out with a shovel to get the pile for the garden. Once, two gardeners actually argued over who saw it first!

    Comment by Last53BusRider — 9:17 pm January 22, 2013 #

  15. Doesn’t matter that it’s cleaner or less stinky than dog poop. Citizens don’t get to legally dump any solid substance on the streets or sidewalks. Why should cops be exempt?

    Comment by rocky raccoon — 9:22 pm January 22, 2013 #

  16. AJP- totally agree! Try stepping on it folks, it won’t even stick to your shoe. But,
    I get everyone else’s point- personally I have seen the SPD pick up horse poop down town…

    Comment by Nwmama — 9:40 pm January 22, 2013 #

  17. For perspective’s sake: The horses are seen out and about in West Seattle about once a *year*.
    .
    If you saw horse manure somewhere in the right of way, and you think it’s a problem or hazard, I would advise calling 206-684-ROAD tomorrow morning with the location, as the right-of-way is SDOT’s to maintain – though you might want to consider the amount of emissions that would emanate from the motor vehicle that might be sent this way to clean it up … since all forms of transportation discharge something. Consider the emission of police cars and motorcycles (not to mention non-police cars and motorcycles) compared to the waste of four horses on a relatively short jaunt. Or the carbon-dioxide exhaling of walking/running/bicycling humans, not to mention the other excretions, which are out of sight/out of mind because of plumbing, but do wind up in Puget Sound too (see “Diver Laura” videos of local outfalls).

    Comment by WSB — 9:56 pm January 22, 2013 #

  18. when are we getting an off leash horse park in West Seattle ?

    Comment by smokeycretin9 — 9:57 pm January 22, 2013 #

  19. OMG what is with the rash of poop talk lately! You people and your crap… lol.

    Comment by Cait — 10:01 pm January 22, 2013 #

  20. Great image! Thank you for sharing!

    Comment by kevinmcc — 10:03 pm January 22, 2013 #

  21. Indeed, shout-out to Tammy Wooley for answering my plea for a photo from anyone. And also thanks to Kevin, who was one of the first to call and report the sighting – we drove Barton from ferry line to Westwood, and then around Westwood, recalling the past incidences in which we’ve seen them outside certain businesses – I think we just missed them. Or else didn’t go far enough into the center. Oh well. All’s well that ends well. Although that may be an unfortunate pun given the rest of the comments … TR

    Comment by WSB — 10:20 pm January 22, 2013 #

  22. WHO CARES… if the horses poop on the street! If they put even a small dent in crime, I’m all for it!

    You see a pile of horse poop? I’ll be happy to go scoop it up. Might do wonders for my garden this spring :)

    Comment by kevinmcc — 12:39 am January 23, 2013 #

  23. Yea… City folk complaining way too much about manure. It does make for a good laugh though.

    Comment by comment — 3:43 am January 23, 2013 #

  24. I don’t understand why they don’t have the little bag to catch it? NYPD has these, it’s not a big expense.

    I can only IMAGINE what would happen if I rode a horse around and it pooped everywhere- I’m guessing SPD would fine me.

    If we lived in the country I imagine this wouldn’t be an issue at all, but when you have paved streets and sidewalks and it rains all the time? You’re just asking for a sloppy, smelly mess on people’s shoes. This isn’t 1873, this isn’t Little House on the Prairia.

    Comment by cascadianone — 8:22 am January 23, 2013 #

  25. speaking of Diver Laura. I went to one of those “Feed the Tox-ick monster” (or whatever it’s called) things. they talked at length about picking up your dog poop to put in the trash because of all the damage it does to the local waters when the dog poop becomes part of the run-off.

    so do these comments mean that horse poop doesn’t have the same effect?

    Comment by sam-c — 8:39 am January 23, 2013 #

  26. sam: short answer is that horse poop and dog poop have very different stuff in them. you can take horse manure and fertilize your lawn or garden with it. you don’t want to do that with dog poop.

    so yeah its a nuisance if they leave it laying around where people have to walk or something, but if it isn’t in anyone’s way it really isn’t hurting anything.

    Comment by rob — 8:52 am January 23, 2013 #

  27. I will volunteer to take a few pounds of horse poo for my garden! As it is, I have to pay for it by the bag (well…steer manure) at Home Depot.

    Comment by Catpie — 9:22 am January 23, 2013 #

  28. If Woodland Park can sell “Zoo Doo” maybe there is a market for “Horse Patrol Doo” too?

    Comment by sc — 9:46 am January 23, 2013 #

  29. Yes, the police are exempt from picking up their horse’s manure. Those of us who occasionally ride through the neighborhoods on the way to Westcrest are not! We always come back after our ride to pick up any mess our horses leave behind. Usually within 30 minutes.

    Comment by SJ2 — 10:19 am January 23, 2013 #

  30. I too am having a good chuckle over the horse poop.The mounted patrol is not out that often(unlike in NYC) so I really don’t consider it a problem-but if someone else does-just get a shovel and take care of it.Yes as citizens we’re supposed to clean up after our dogs-but what exactly do you think SPD should do-have someone following with a broom & cart–really? I think the mounted patrol is a great asset to the community-thankfully the Seattle Police Foundation stepped in to save them a few years ago.

    Comment by Anne — 10:39 am January 23, 2013 #

  31. Actually, I think having them roam around WS would go a long way in terms of “customer relations”. Kids want to meet the horse and the officer, the officers aren’t in cars but face to face with our neighbors.
    Wondering about the horse poo myself. Garden could use it.

    Comment by beth — 10:44 am January 23, 2013 #

  32. I had several years of having to clean up horse manure and dog manure for my chores when a kid living out in the country.

    I’d waaaay rather shovel up after a horse than after a dog.

    Comment by LivesIn WS — 11:20 am January 23, 2013 #

  33. Maybe horse droppings can go into the yard waste collection bin. I always smile on those rare occasions when I hear them clomping along Henderson. Picking up a few road apples once in a while seems like a small price to pay.

    Comment by BlairJ — 12:01 pm January 23, 2013 #

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