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Pros and cons on shipping horses to Europe

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divigo

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My husband and I have been assisting in shipping miniature horses over to Europe for quite some time now.

I have seen some topics on shipping horses before, but am just curious about your feelings on the topic.

Do you like selling horses to European people and what are the problems or difficulties you run in to?

Bottom line is...how can we make it easier to sell and ship horses to Europe?
 

disneyhorse

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I don't really think there are any "cons" to shipping a horse out of the country... I would think most breeders see it as an "honor" to have horses exported. And I know that it is prestigious to have a horse imported from another country.

Although I have never exported or imported a horse, my friend here imports and exports Andalusians. She prefers to import them rather than find one already imported, because she feels the overall quality is greater in their native country. She has also exported them back to Europe, because she does get nice horses and they are in worldwide demand when they are sold.

It is hard on the horse, but it seems the airline shipping has come a long way, it is the quarantine that makes it hard to wait to see your new purchase!

With the price of the US dollar low, I would imagine now is a great time for Europe to find some good foundation stock to import...

Andrea
 

Laura

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[SIZE=12pt]I love seeing my babies go to European homes! It's a fantastic opportunity to share our years of work and bloodlines with a wider market and hopefully to improve the breed. I have had zero problems with International sales (Europe, Mexico and Canada). [/SIZE]

Sellling to European buyers is actually quite easy for us. We deliver a healthy horse, with a current coggins test and health certificate, to a quarantine location (once on only 2 days notice) and they handle the arrangements with the shippers and buyer. We get to make new friends overseas and enjoy their happiness!! What could be better?
 
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REO

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I have no advise, but I wanted to say, I would love to sell to someone overseas some time.
 

AnnaC

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As some of you will know I imported little Dragon (Darmond Boogerman's Bravado) into the UK last January, from Robin at TrueJoy Miniatures. The first thing I asked Robin was 'do you think he will be up to the long trip/process?' By this I meant temperament wise - condition wise he was obviously up to it!

It is extremely stressful for any animal to go to a new home, but an import/export animal has to put up with being quarantined with strange people/other horses, vets visits, extra jabs etc before they even start the long journey to their new home.

Those that have been shown/travelled regularly may well stand up to the long trip better than those who have little experience of the outside world. But the experience of an airplane trip, with all the noise of the flight, plus being confined in a metal crate with - possibly - other nervous horses, can be horrific, as I am sure you can understand.

Luckily, due to the care and attention he received, little Dragon arrived pretty well ok. But he was stressed and disorientated and extremely exhausted. Inspite of having a winter coat, he was cold/shakey, so we rugged him with a light summer rug. Also, again luckily, we have a large lorry, and although we had set up a compartment for him to travel in, we had left the rest of the space open and well bedded up, and when we stopped en route home to give his 'shaky' legs a break from travelling, we let him into the open space, whereupon he promptly laid down and fell into an exhausted sleep for over an hour!

I do wonder what sort of condition/state of exhaustion he would have been in if a) he had had to fly on to Europe or b) if we hadn't had the space to give him that rest on the way home.

Of course this is just my experience with one little horse. But I do think there are issues to consider when making these 'long haul' journies with our little horses. Dragon was not one used to travelling, so that did not help him. Also he arrived with a dry cough and a runny nose, which lasted a couple of weeks - a well documented problem with flying horses.

An interesting thread, I shall be watching for more posts.

Anna
 

divigo

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In the past couple of years we have been picking up miniature horses for clients at several different airports in Europe.

And somehow one horse is better equipt to take the trip than the other.

Some horses arrive with a sparkle in their eye, tired but purky.

And others need like 6 weeks to recuperate (is that the right word?).

Is it just that every horse is different and because of that responds different to the flight or can we do things to prepare the horse for its adventure?
 

MyBarakah

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Hi!

I just had a WOUNDERFUL experience selling a 2yr.old colt overseas to Pat with Mandrake Miniatures of the UK. It was just THEE best experience EVER! And now have a GOOD friend too
! I get updated with pictures all the time and know he got a wounderful home!
I also had a VERY good experience with Diane at EZ 2 Spot ranch in TX for the quarentine place. She was WOUNDERFUL to work with and knew my guy was well taken care of down there too!! I knew this colt adjusted very well to new surroundings so he took everything very good....

I think it's GREAT to have a over seas sale. It was actually a very "easy" thing to do! And hope to do it again in the near future!
 

divigo

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Hi!

I just had a WOUNDERFUL experience selling a 2yr.old colt overseas to Pat with Mandrake Miniatures of the UK. It was just THEE best experience EVER! And now have a GOOD friend too
! I get updated with pictures all the time and know he got a wounderful home!
I also had a VERY good experience with Diane at EZ 2 Spot ranch in TX for the quarentine place. She was WOUNDERFUL to work with and knew my guy was well taken care of down there too!! I knew this colt adjusted very well to new surroundings so he took everything very good....

I think it's GREAT to have a over seas sale. It was actually a very "easy" thing to do! And hope to do it again in the near future!
Don't you just love Dianne and Terry from EZ 2 Spot!!


I know I do they are so good at what they do and they love doing it!

Anyone else who ships horses????
 

Becky

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I've sent several horses overseas this past year and have another one to go soon. It's been a very good experience on my end and as far as I know, the horses have all arrived in good shape.

I am fortunate in that there are several quarantine facilities within a few hours drive of where I live (one less than an hour!) and it is easy and not too expensive to get the horses delivered there.

I think as long as the buyer has a good relationship with the seller and the quarantine facility, the shipping process should go well.
 

wildoak

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We had a little mare go overseas early this year who ended up in quarantine for several months due to scheduling difficulties. The buyer had a few horses going and for some reason they were unable to get a flight right away. I worried about them being there for so long - and I know she did too - but she says they arrived tired but in good shape. Aside from that, I think it's a win win situation for everyone.

Jan
 

Janis

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Hi Patricia,

As you know, our first horse is in quarantine right now getting ready to go to the Netherlands. I really enjoyed talking to you and Tom (the new owner). Terry and Dianne are great too! I worry about my baby going on his plane trip, but Dianne assured me that they will be with him at all times and that they do very well.

It is very exciting shipping one of your home grown babies overseas. It lets you know that your hard work is paying off and someone else sees what you see in your horses.

Thanks you for the job you do! It makes it easier for us.

Janis

Camelot Country Minis
 

Michelle@wescofarms

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The only downside of going to Europe for me - we're on the West Coast!!! So there is the added time in flight and the associated costs. That or I get people wanting pregnant mares or weanlings - that is a long flight for either from here so I've declined to send them.

What I've seen on the WC more horses go to Japan, Australia, Korea, South America, Mexico then to Europe - not that they don't but in general. That is where most of the International shoppers we get are from. I think its a cost factor.

It will be interesting to see with the every increasing cost of fuel how this will affect shipping both domestic and international.
 

AnnaC

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I just want to add that I live about 20 minutes away from Pat at Mandrake Miniatures UK, and my little Dragon also spent his quarantine with Ez2Spot and flew into the UK on the same flight as Pat's little horse - all credit to Terry and Diane, and my grateful thanks for all their help.

Thinking about the reaction of different horses to long distant travel, (apart from the fact that some will naturally be calm in temperament and others won't), I do wonder if stallions might fiind it more 'stressful' simply due to the fact that they are entires, and therefore spend a lot more energy on being 'aware' of their surroundings/other horses etc. It is their 'job' to know what is going on in their area, to suss out other horses, mares/stallions etc. In changing surroundings/different horses/different situations they must use up so much more energy, and therefore be possibly more exhausted by the time they arrive at their new homes?

I do have to endorse that importing horses from you guys in the US is a brilliant way to make new friends! But would also add a huge warning to those importing into the UK. Remember the dreaded VAT Tax - it can add a large amount to your purchase price, and has to be paid 'up front' at the airport, before you can take delivery of your new baby!!

Anna
 

buckonranch

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I have been involved with exporting for quite a few years.. We feel it is one of the highest rewards to have your stock become a foundation program in another country. I am willing to do what I can to help our international buyers be satisfied with the horses we recommend to them.. The internet sales to Europe has turned our market into a visual industry.. with web photos and web cams...the tools used to purchase our product...

I like to recommend the shipping companies that have prooven to be the best cost for the quality care.. We use EZ2spot in Texas for our exporting.... If i had one opportunity to make a change in the exporting industry.. I would love to have the opportunity of exporting available up in our Northern areas so our horses do not have to be shipped all the way across America.. which is stressAND $$$$$ enough.. then they have to adjust to a totally different climate.. feed sources that are not familiar to them.. change in water, new caretakers that are unfamiliar to them and not part of their herd.. and a totally different management practice. During these 30 days while going thru all these major life changes we are expecting they can keep themselves in top condition to impress the new owners... I am told the plane ride can be exhausting for the horses, and I recommend a export which hopefully includes a person accompanying them on the plane ride.. for safety and comfort..so they can at least have a drink and some hay which usually is a comfort to them... once they arrive and are released from the crates.. they may spend another night in a strange place before the new owners finally get the see them.. Do you think they look like the photos we sent to the new buyers when they were purchased???? LOL>> Probably not...... Next.. their last journey home.....to see the new owners.. change of climate.. new feeds.. new managemnt practices....I would like to recommend to new buyers you use a well know shipper to pick up the horses when they come in the country.. this can be another LONG and dangerous journey for them until they reach their new homes. I think Divigo has been a boost to the importing industry on the European side.. It is great to have some to recommend....

I would just like to make one more comment.... all breeders have a different opinion in what quality and type are in a miniature.horse. You can see at a sale.. or a show.. everyone likes a different size.. color.. style.. bloodline..

I may recommend a certain horse or bloodline that trips my trigger... while.. another farm may tell you totally the opposite of what I think is the best horse... lets face it .. who has the Best Breeding Programs.... WE DO!!!!!! There is not a cookie cutter pattern so we are all offering a different look and quality to the European Buyers.. Does that mean they are wrong and I am right in our recommendation.... NO.. not necessarily, we just have a differnt eye for a horse....

I find European buyers are very interested in the pedigree of the horses they are buying. They like National or World Champions titles in their pedigrees.. European buyers put a greater presidence on the mares side of the breeding program than on the stallions like we do in America. Many European buyers tend to hook up with a American Breeders as a sister farms. which I think is wonderful for both parties..I have found becoming involved with starting new breeding programs has become like a new lease on life... learning new cultures.. languages.. making new freindships.. this is a TOTAL boost to the Miniature Horse Industry..
 

divigo

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Hi Patricia,

As you know, our first horse is in quarantine right now getting ready to go to the Netherlands. I really enjoyed talking to you and Tom (the new owner). Terry and Dianne are great too! I worry about my baby going on his plane trip, but Dianne assured me that they will be with him at all times and that they do very well.

It is very exciting shipping one of your home grown babies overseas. It lets you know that your hard work is paying off and someone else sees what you see in your horses.

Thanks you for the job you do! It makes it easier for us.

Janis

Camelot Country Minis
Hi Janis,

Thank you for your kind words.

Don't worry about your beautiful boy, between EZ2 spot, Divigo and his new owner Tom...he will be just fine!

I really ejoy my job and love mediating between buyer and seller as I have been fortunate to speek English as if it were my birth language and because we know how to complete the deal and bring the horses to Europe.

Soon the circle will be complete as Divigo now mediates, transports, trains, shows horses and sells tack.

Horses, horses, horses all day long. We love it!!!


Simply heaven on earth.

We will keep you posted on how your boy is doing in Europe!.

Trisha
 

divigo

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I like to recommend the shipping companies that have prooven to be the best cost for the quality care.. We use EZ2spot in Texas for our exporting....

I think Divigo has been a boost to the importing industry on the European side.. It is great to have some to recommend....
Thank you Buckonranch, for your kind words.

It is a huge compliment to reed those words on an American Miniature Horse Forum.

We will do our very best to keep up the high standards and try to offer our transports for the best possible prices. Unfortunately it does go wrong sometimes as people forget how to get their horse home and use the cheapest possible transporter. It breaks our heart when we learn about certain transport incidents in Europe.

Thats why I asked this question about shipping to Europe as we are trying to improve the service.

It is great to work with Terry and Dianne from EZ2 Spot and if I may say so myself I think we make a great team.

Maybe Terry and Dianne will be willing to start up another business up north?
 

Joanne

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We have had our horses shipped to Australia as well as Europe and have had great interactions with the clients.

In Australia and New Zealands case there is only one transport company allowed to organize and ship the horses in. They have been great to work with.

Being on the West Coast has not stopped the European buyers from wanting our horses and we get a lot of inquiries. There are non stop flights to Europe from the west coast and quaranteens available here as well.

Like all other buisness transactions, communication is key. It is important for the client to understand certain things, such as that clipping the horse in winter, is not advisable before the journey, and that if they are buying a mare in foal there are deadlines in which we must ship to insure that the horse has the best chance of foaling for them are key.

Having excellent quaranteen facilities and transporters that take care of the mass of paperwork is important. So far we have had excellent people that we work with that have kept both us and the clients updated on the horses.

Personally, I love it when the client buys more than one horse at a time as the two have company in transit, and have company on arrival. I think that reduces stress fo rthem as well. But that of course is not always possible.

With the American dollar at a all time low right now it is a GREAT time for the rest of the world to get some outstanding horses at a low cost, even with the transport charges.

I also prefer to work with transporters that have experience with shipping miniature horses.

Great topic. Thanks for starting it.
 

divigo

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We have had our horses shipped to Australia as well as Europe and have had great interactions with the clients.

In Australia and New Zealands case there is only one transport company allowed to organize and ship the horses in. They have been great to work with.

Being on the West Coast has not stopped the European buyers from wanting our horses and we get a lot of inquiries. There are non stop flights to Europe from the west coast and quaranteens available here as well.

Like all other buisness transactions, communication is key. It is important for the client to understand certain things, such as that clipping the horse in winter, is not advisable before the journey, and that if they are buying a mare in foal there are deadlines in which we must ship to insure that the horse has the best chance of foaling for them are key.

Having excellent quaranteen facilities and transporters that take care of the mass of paperwork is important. So far we have had excellent people that we work with that have kept both us and the clients updated on the horses.

Personally, I love it when the client buys more than one horse at a time as the two have company in transit, and have company on arrival. I think that reduces stress fo rthem as well. But that of course is not always possible.

With the American dollar at a all time low right now it is a GREAT time for the rest of the world to get some outstanding horses at a low cost, even with the transport charges.

I also prefer to work with transporters that have experience with shipping miniature horses.

Great topic. Thanks for starting it.
Joanne, I could not agree with you more.

We don't just deliver a horse to our clients we tell them as much about their newly owned horse a possible to make sure he stays in the good shape we left him in.

First time importers just don't know there way around within the process as there is no guide book to help you, so they don't know what to expect. And there is the language barier of course.

Sometimes it is difficult for us to keep people up to date as we are so busy and time flies, but communication is very important.

Thank you all for responding to the topic, it's nice to have a good discussion on the subject.

Trisha
 

Joanne

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Trisha, could you please PM me and let me know how your service works?

Thanks, Joanne
 

River Wood

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We have sold overseas and Terry and Diane at EZ 2 Spot made the transition for the horses much easier with the excellent care that they received.
 

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