Udder shame: Cow statue stolen from Harold Seltzer's Steakhouse in St. Petersburg

[Times files]
[Times files]
Published April 29, 2019

ST. PETERSBURG — One of the cows from Harold Seltzer's Steakhouse has run astray from the herd and the owners are willing to pay for its return — likely in some form of cow.

According to the St. Petersburg Police Department, the beloved bovine was bagged in broad daylight, missing since 3 p.m. Saturday.

Measuring about 12 feet by 3 feet, the black and white cow is part of a staple herd that's sat outside the steakhouse's Tyrone Boulevard location since it opened as Sam Seltzer's Steakhouse in the mid-90s. The Seltzers told police the statue holds sentimental value and they just want it returned. The owners are offering a reward in the form of a free meal if the cow is returned.

On Facebook, Harold Seltzer said someone got a little carried away trying to ride the cow for a photo op, causing it to come loose. It hadn't been cemented back into the ground and was standing near the restaurant's rear entrance. Seltzer also said a similar incident happened in the late-'90s.

Seltzer originally opened the Sam Seltzer's and named it for his grandfather. After growing the franchise to six locations, Seltzer relinquished control of the company. He took over after the new owners failed to expand and went bankrupt.

Seltzer reopened the St. Pete and Port Richey locations in 2010 as Harold Seltzer's.

When the chain went bankrupt in 2010, a herd of plastic cattle mysteriously went missing from a shuddered Tampa location.

"We don't know what happened to the cows," Keith Appleby, an attorney representing Sam Seltzer's, said at the time.

Contact Daniel Figueroa IV at Follow @danuscripts.