Passers-by were excited to see and take pictures of the four police horses on patrol along the busy Jalan Trus in the city centre.
Clerk N. Nethia, 34, applauded the move as the city, especially in the bustling Bazaar Karat area, has recorded a high crime rate for years.
"Since working here 11 years ago, I have heard of and seen people being robbed and belongings snatched by thieves even in broad daylight.
"I hope the crime rate in the Johor Baru area will go down because of the mounted police unit, especially within tourist spots," she said when met at Jalan Wong Ah Fook here.
Four horses from Australia and Argentina named Erni, Rodillo, Pitrafa and Firullete, aged between 12 and 16 years, were deployed for patrols within 15km in the town area starting yesterday.
Consultant Bryan Chai, 37, who was snapping pictures and recording videos of the police horses, said with the mounted police unit, the public would feel safer.
Officer Siti Supiah Jaafar, 55, from Skudai, said she was excited to see the unit and did not waste the chance to take a picture with the horses.
"I hope that they will have more of the units to patrol other hot spot areas to curb crime such as snatch theft and robbery," she said.
Commanding officer of the mounted police unit from Bukit Aman Deputy Supt Mohd Fadhil said 12 officers, including four riders, were deployed to Johor Baru South (JBS).
The unit will also conduct patrols at night, as horses have sharper vision in the dark.
"With its capability of running at least 60kph and height of more than one metre, a horse can help us sniff out and catch criminals," he said.
DSP Mohd Fadhil said the Serdang police headquarters recorded a drop in the crime rate of up to 40 per cent after using the unit for patrols in the district last year.
He said polo ponies were among the 63 horses attached to the unit.
Each horse is valued at RM100,000 (S$32,000) and have undergone a 12-month training.