The Horse Trust have joined ERF in publicising the risks that surround purchasing equines of unknown origin from France via a photo on a website and transporting them to the UK. This support from the world’s oldest horse charity, which is renowned for the its investment into equine science, welfare and education, adds weight to the campaigning led by ERF and their supporters. Following closely on the heels of the recent Defra guidelines (see here) it demonstrates the growing public concern at this trade.
Regular followers of ERF will know that we have had to rescue horses that these websites had ‘rescued’ and were holding in France awaiting transportation to the UK . They were being kept in appalling conditions and were in very poor health.
We urge anyone in the UK who is contemplating buying through one of these ‘rescue’ websites to listen to the advice being given by Defra, The Horse Trust, WHW and Redwings amongst others and consider rehoming a UK horse in need instead. If you decide to purchase from France, please ensure that:
- you or someone you know speaks French so you can communicate directly with the current owner.
- a full vet inspection is given to the animal before transportation including blood tests.
- the animal has an up-to-date Haras Nationaux passport including microchip details (now a legal requirement in France).
- your money is passed /transferred directly to the owner once the horse is loaded and that you receive a receipt in return (including the VAT payable). Beware of middle men/women that you do not know.
- you use a reputable transporter who abides by the transport regulations laid down for transporting equines.
- you arrange a vet visit within 24 hours of the animal reaching the UK.
If you need any help with the above, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org . If in any doubt, do not part with your money.