ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It was a scary situation for an Albuquerque police officer. He was on a horse downtown when the horse slipped and fell on top of him.
On any day the downtown beat is fairly busy for police, but Wednesday it was two of their own that needed help.
Loud traffic, scuffed concrete and an injured ankle.
“The horse’s legs went out from under him and he just fell and took the rider down with him,” Officer Tanner Tixier said.
An Albuquerque Police Department officer was patrolling downtown when a witness said a big truck drove over a bump making a loud noise. The horse reacted, and ended up on top of the officer.
“They are still horses. There are certain things that will get their attention. I don’t like to use the word ‘spooked’ because that tends to have a bad connotation behind it, but they are still animals,” Officer Tixier said.
Before the horses hit the street with officers, “They go through months of months of training. They go through de-sensitizing. So when we take them out the smaller things do not tend to bother them,” Officer Tixier said.
Albuquerque Police said the horse does not have behavioral issues and that the officer was properly handling the animal. It was equipped with proper shoes for sidewalks.
“Horses tend to slip on occasion,” Officer Tixier said.
Police said falls are rare but they know it happens. That’s why the department uses a specific breed.
“The reason we use the draft horse is because their bone and joint structure is a lot bigger and more robust, so when they do fall, the chance of them breaking a leg or being severely hurt is a lot less,” Officer Tixier said.
Police say the officer only suffered a few cuts and bruises. The horse is also fine.
APD has ten horses in its mounted patrol. They spend their off-time at private stables in the North Valley.