While living in the Netherlands we became enamored with the calm, intelligent draft horses. Eric worked many hours in the forests pulling logs with his Brabant. When this horse was not hauling logs, plowing or harrowing, she would be doing hayrides, or even go on the occasional trail ride.
The desire to start working again with these heavy horses led us to the decision to try and acquire a number of Brabant horses here in Canada. In the Netherlands these horses are abundant, but due to the big expense to import them, they are relatively hard to find in Canada.
As our breeding of Brabant horses, is still in a very early stage, we can only offer stud services to our leased Stallion.
We will strive to breed authentic Brabant draft horses, who stand out in their calm nature, work ethic and strong conformation.
With the many contacts we have in both the Netherlands and Belgium, we hope in the future to be able to expand our herd and import some new blood to Canada.
IMPORTING BRABANT HORSES
As we are preparing to import another group of young Brabant Horses from the Netherlands and Belgium, to Canada, we would like to outline the process for people interested in importing a Brabant horse from Europe.
As Eric Verstappen, was raised in the Netherlands, and has worked for many years with the Brabant horses he has many contacts with breeders of these horses. We utilise these contacts to find appropiate horses who are potentially interesting to import. Usually, the initial contact with these horses are through photographs. Last year, we travelled to Belgium and the Netherlands to go and see these animals in person.
First things first, as the financial picture is very important to know before committing to a horse is understanding the costs. This outline, is exactly that an outline; The costs can change due to things such as fuel surcharges, taxes, veterinary costs etc. So, understand that this is guideline and not a fixed quote.
As the costs to import horses over 2 years is very high, we are only looking at importing animals under 2 years old.
Cost of horse: between 1000-3000Euro
Quarantine, transport to quarantine stables, veterinary testing, flights, import changes, number of horses coming in the same transport: About 6000-8000 Euro
CCIA quarantine and testing in Canada: $1500
We suggest you calculate on a total cost of having the horse in Calgary, at $13 000 (Canadian dollars)
Now, the process, if you have made the decision to import a Brabant from Europe, there are a number of points to consider.
The Brabant horse is part of the breed known as The Belgium Draft Horse, the mother pedigree is the Belgische Trekpaard in Belgium. The Dutch Draft horse is exactly the same breed, the Dutch Registry is a daughter pedigree association and is fully recognised by the original Belgium registry.
All horse come with a registration paper from either the Belgium or the Dutch registry.
All come with a horse passport and are microchipped.
All the veterinary work is supplied with each horse, and these horses have undergone health exams prior to import.
Many of the horses originating in Belgium will still have their tails cropped, while those from the Netherlands will have an intact tail.
Depending on the ages and size of the horses, we can fit possibly 5 weanlings comfortably on a transport box, or 4 yearlings or 3 two year old’s. If you are serious about committing to importing a horse we will need to know what you would be wanting, regarding gender, colour, with tail/without etc. We will send you photo’s of the horses we think will be suitable. If we travel to Europe ourselves we can always send additional photo’s and videos. If you make the decision that you would like to purchase one of these horses, you will be required to make the entire payment for the horse at this stage, as once the purchase has been committed to, then the transport, quarantine etc. is also confirmed.
The horses are then checked by the registry, the veterinarians do the health checks, bloodwork and paperwork. The horses are then transported by trailer to the quarantine facility where the horses will remain until shipment. They undergo a few more tests here, and are acclimatised to each other and prepared for the shipping boxes.
The flight leaves from Luxemburg through Seattle and then onto Calgary. A groom travels with the horses on the entire journey and the groom will feed, water and care for the animals in transport. Once they arrive in Calgary they are usually rested for a day or two before heading to the CCIA approved quarantine facility. Here they stay another 10 days and undergo some final testing before being released to their new owners.
We highly recommend that once the decision is made to purchase a horse, that you insure the horse all risk. We work with specialists in the veterinary and transportation side.
Wrapping up: we give you full disclosure on all the costs, tests and information during the entire process. Unforeseen things do happen and you need to be aware of this; things like flight changes, delays do occur.
Or alternately, you can call us in the evening at 1-780-523-9911