By Jeffrey Schaub

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — The San Francisco Police Department welcomed two new members to the mounted police patrol in a special ceremony at Union Square Monday, as three horses retired from the force.

Strider, a half Belgian, half quarter horse was welcomed to the force by the crowd. Officer Matt Castagnola said a good disposition is what makes a good police horse.

“I mean…not any horse can be a police horse,” he said.

Strider, along with Quinn will be saddled up just as Rebel, Hammer and Magnum, retire.

When asked what kind of pension the retiring horses get, Castagnola said it’s very good. “They get to go just be horses, hang out, eat all the grass hay and carrots they want,” he said.

The ceremony was held at Lefty O’Doul’s restaurant, a popular eatery for mounted patrol officers.

Chief Greg Suhr hammered the retiring horse’s shoes over the doorway of the restaurant.

The mounted patrol currently has 11 horses, but is looking for two more new recruits.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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