Buying Horses In Europe Part II: Importing & Quarantine
You’ve gone to Europe, searched through over 20 some odd horses, you’ve been in the market for what seems like years and you’ve finally found him… The horse of your dreams! Now it’s time to send him home…
What you need to consider when deciding to import a horse.
It sounds so glamorous, my horse is “imported”, in fact it turns into a number one selling feature if you can say “imported” in your add. Importing has always been, and always will be EXPENSIVE!! It will cost you roughly between $8-$10 000 for the flight alone depending on currency exchange and the market.
Your horse is not allowed on that plane without insurance, including the must “biserk” insurance. I am going to say that if you are importing, you are spending a solid amount on your new friend and therefore are looking at a minimum of $1500 on insurance alone.
Depending wherethere you bought a stallion, mare or gelding quaratine times vary. It also changes whether or not the horse is coming into Canada, or the US. It is costly, at $500 a day. Your horse will usually be a bit out of sorts, sick, and you are not there to make sure he is ok. Horses often go through a traumatic experience on the plane. Most horses lose it at the sight of a tarp or unidentified object on the ground, never mind flying. We often don’t think how the horse feels after he has flown half way across the world. We cringe at the thought of putting our beloved dog Scruffy in the cargo lane… So why do we neglect to feel this way about our horse? In fact any non horse person I tell that I “import” my horses, cannot believe the concept!! So it is very crucial to keep this in mind when your horse arrives. That being said, there are some amazing quarentine places where the care is above, with phone calls daily updating you on your horses progress.
Typically quarantine is not close to home. Therefore delivery arrangements are usually made. Excepect to easily spend another $1000++ to get your horse safetly to your doorstep.
Border and Taxes
Yes we have to pay taxes when shipping horses aross the boarder! You will have to contact a border broker and have your horses coggins and new CEM (Contagious Equine M….) certificate as well as the paid border brokerage completed before going through to Canada. As mentioned above this can all depend on how much you paid in the first place for you horse and this is the $$$ icing on the cake!
Finally your horse has arrived! But you’re not off the hook yet. He doesn’t yet know what has happened to him, the food tastes different and people don’t speak his language. It is important to take his temperature at least 2 times a day and usually some electrolits and some sort of bran mash for his intestines to make sure all is running smoothly. Some adjust easily, others take a while… So make sure you’re sensitive to your horse’s needs and give him all the time it takes, and when you do decide to start with riding -take it slow!