After 2 decades of farriery, all Marcus Martinez Jr., the New York Police Department’s resident horseshoer, can say is “I love it.” 

“Even the bad days are good,” Martinez tells amNY. His typical day consists of forging shoes while also providing hoofcare for the mounted officers' horses. 

Still, Martinez says he needs to remain ever vigilant in caring for the horses hooves, as safety for both himself and the horses are his main concern. Martinez says he has developed a sort of “sixth sense” for horse care. 

“I look at them everyday…. They [can] grow out of balance,” Martinez explains. “My job is to balance the foot to the horse, his spinal cord and skeletal structure, so when it lands it lands as flat and as comfortably as possible. I can also hear it, I can hear the footfall and hear when they are working too hard or when they are not landing as flat as they should be. I also pay attention to their walk, I can see that, I can almost feel that.”

Martinez also acknowledges the toll forging and horseshoeing can take on a farrier’s body, noting his own pain and body stress from his work. Yet, Martinez says he loves his work and tries to maintain his own body’s health while tending to NYPD’s horses. 

Martinez also enjoys seeing the inclusivity that horses add to NYPD’s community response. He says that people find horses approachable and therefore the mounted police officers are more readily approachable as well. 

About horses, Martinez simply said, “they’re beautiful. They’re unique.”

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