: News

Filed Under:

No Riding, But Plenty Of Work Horse-Mounted Patrol

Play associated audio
Sergeant David Schlosser of the U.S. Park Police feeds a police horse. Keeping the horses fed and hydrated at an outdoor facility is a challenge during the storm. 
Jonathan Wilson
Sergeant David Schlosser of the U.S. Park Police feeds a police horse. Keeping the horses fed and hydrated at an outdoor facility is a challenge during the storm. 

By Jonathan Wilson

Not every challenge posed by this winter storm comes down to salting and plowing. The U.S. Park Police Horse-Mounted Patrol faces some unique difficulties weathering the storm on the National Mall.

Mark Asmussen is going through his first winter assigned to horse-mounted patrol the National Mall.

"This is the most snow I've ever seen in my life," Asmussen says. "I grew up in Tennessee."

Asmussen says the horses living in the outdoor stables here actually seem to like snow.

"We were able to let them out over the weekend, and they seemed to have a ball with it, but once it's this deep, we have to worry about they're safety," he says.

So the officers wont be doing any riding today; they wont have much time to relax.

Keeping the the horses fed and hydrated in weather like this is a challenge. Each horse drinks 12 to 15 gallons of water a day, ideally lukewarm.

The stables don't have an automatic watering system, so for officers that means lots of trips carrying a five-gallon bucket filled to the brim.

"Each horse's [bucket] has to be filled individually multiple times a day...trying to carry the hay and grain, and keeping the walkway clear, its an all-day battle," Officer Jeff Bloch says.

There are 13 horses housed at the National Mall stables. U.S. Park Police have a total of 45 horses at different stables spread across the D.C. region.

NPR

'It's A Surviving Tool': 'Native' Tells Satirical Stories Of Life In Israel

NPR's Kelly McEvers talks to author Sayed Kashua, an Israeli-Palestinian whose satirical weekly columns in Haaretz newspaper are collected in his new book called Native.
NPR

What The Heck Is Natural Wine? Here's A Taste

Natural wines can be off-putting at first: perhaps darker than usual, a little fizzy or cloudy. Some find them charming, others unsophisticated. Here's a guide to this trending, quirky style of wine.
NPR

Jim Gilmore, Who Was Campaigning For President, Isn't Anymore

He had the resume — swing-state governor, veteran, ex-party leader — but there's a good chance you had no idea he was running. Judging by vote totals, Iowa and New Hampshire may have missed it too.
NPR

Colonialism Comment Puts Facebook Under Scrutiny

A Facebook board member lambasted a decision by regulators in India, the social network's second-largest market. He thereby sparked new scrutiny of Facebook's intentions in that country.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.