The Oakdale Police Department equestrian budget is going to double —from $1 to $2 — with the recent addition of Moe, an 8-year-old bay quarter horse gelding.
Joining Lobo, ridden by reserve officer Joe Cruz, Moe will be ridden by reserve officer John Deming. The equestrian officers provide their services to the city for the cost of $1 per horse per year.
Moe was purchased privately and sight unseen by Deming, who had wanted to join Cruz as an equestrian officer for the local department. Moe was purchased from the same woman who had sold Lobo, though Moe’s situation was different than Lobo’s who had been abused and rescued. A boarder who had simply abandoned him at the stables for three years had stabled Moe. When Cruz saw Moe, he knew he was looking at a good horse.
“I’d been riding Moe for months and when John told me he was looking for a horse, I told him about Moe. John bought Moe sight unseen,” Cruz said. “I’d been wanting a second horse because it’s very difficult to have only one horse. John had been trying to adopt a horse and it fell through.”
Deming will start his official training with Moe at the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Mounted Patrol School in Rancho Murrieta in October but in the meantime, he will train alongside Cruz and Lobo to learn the ropes. And so far, according to Cruz, Moe is a model police horse.
“In some ways, he’s better than Lobo,” Cruz said, laughing. “He has better ground manners. They’re both good horses.”
On the first night, Moe got a taste of his future duties when he and Deming, Cruz and Lobo responded to a disturbance call on Meadowlark and actually made an arrest.
“He acted like he’s been working in Oakdale for years,” Cruz said proudly. “You should see people coming out of their houses when a horse responds to a call. That was the biggest thrill.”
Since then, Deming has purchased all new tack for both horses and a new trailer has been purchased to haul the horses. The previous trailer, which had been generously donated by Oakdale Equipment Rental, will be repurposed for the Oakdale Animal Control to transport large animals.
Both horses are a huge draw for kids and adults alike and have been seen regularly putting in appearances at the Farmer’s Market and National Night Out.