How Much Do Friesian Horses Cost?


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 15, 2018

The Friesian horse, considered to be the “gentle giant” of the horse world, is one of the world’s favorite breeds.

This breed stands out because of its dominant and striking characteristics, and aside from its shiny black coat and long, thick mane and tail, this horse is heavily built, extremely muscular, and is good natured.

Being one of the oldest domesticated breeds, Friesian horses have their share of contribution to the industrialization of 18th-century Europe.

Today, these horses are almost all over the world and are commonly used for driving, dressage, riding and even for light farm work.

Friesian by Just chaos, on Flickr
Friesian” (CC BY 2.0) by  Just chaos

How much do Friesian horses cost?

Depending on the age, the breeder, the quality and a few other factors mentioned below, a Friesian horse can cost anywhere from as little as $5,000 to as much as $32,000+.  Do not be surprised to see show quality horses imported from the Netherlands costing upwards of $50,000.   Refer to our table below to see what each classification could cost.

Depending on the degree of training, judge rating and gender, Tanbark Acres stated that most horses start at $10,000 and go up from there.

At the time of this writing, there were over 1,100 active listings on EquineNow.com, a popular online horse classified website, with prices ranging from $5,000 to more than $55,000.

ClassificationsAverage Price
Common mares with 3+ years experience$15,000 to $25,000
Star mares$25,000 to $40,000
Model mares$50,000+
Preferent mares$500,000+
Stallions$150,000+
Weanling$7,000 to $15,000
Stud fees$1,500 to $4,000

Factors that affect the price

Age

As mentioned, the age is a factor when pricing the horse.  The older the animal is, the costlier it gets. Youngsters are known to be more affordable than the older ones since the older horse have more than likely acquired training from their breeders and owners before they are for put up for sale.

Gender

Gender is important as this does not only determine the behavior of the horse but of the risks in owning one.  A mare, gelding and stallion vary in prices, but usually, stallions are the popular choice but are incredibly rare as a Friesian breed.  In fact, only 800 were registered in 1990.  However, the most expensive are the top-rated mares, top show horses, and the approved stallions.

Levels of training and personality

The training the horses went through help determine its current skill level.  This, in turn, can affect the price.  Needless to say, you will pay more for a tamed, trained, and experienced horse, not to mention that buyers will likely to pay more for horses with an excellent pedigree, personality, and looks.

Demand

As mentioned, Friesian horses are a rarity in North America, but they are still in demand.  Keep in mind there could be a good chance you would need to import/ship your horse.

Judging

It must be known that Friesian horses are “judged.”  This is a mandatory process wherein officials straight from the Netherlands come here in North America to evaluate the horses.  The thorough evaluation involves an on-hand assessment of the horse’s quality of movement and of its conformation.  The rating that the horses get will determine its rank on a “linear score” sheet given to the owner.  In general, the linear scores for all the offspring of each stallion are combined and published, and this is done to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses that each stallion passes on to his offspring.  Thus, the evaluation will be used as a basis for choosing the best match between sire and dam for the ultimate goal of continually improving the breed.

Studbook registry

If the horse, by chance, is registered by the stud book, then it can sell for much more than a non-stud book registered horse.  The registered Friesians will depend on the age, training, quality but must abide by the standard and ratings.

Friesian horses overview

Native to the Netherlands, Friesian horses of today still resemble their ancestors.  They typically have a beautiful front and thick and long mane and tail.  Their feathers accentuate their dominant black color while their lofty gaits give an impression of elegance and proud stature.  In addition, they have a well-proportioned conformation with a noble head placed on a slightly arched neck.  In general, Friesian horses are a charismatic and dominant breed.

While the only registered color is black, they can range from a black-bay, when shedding, to a true black color.

According to the Friesian Horse Association of North America, there is a favorable height for every gender or age before they can enter the adult studbooks.  Friesian stallions must be at least 1.60 M (15.3 hands) by the age of four and mares and geldings must be at least 1.54 M (15.0 hands).  As for the average weight, 1,300 serves as the standard.

What are the extra costs?

Depending on the location of the breeder, you may need to have your horse shipped, and the costs will greatly depend on the distance traveled.

As with any pet, food, shelter, vet visits and accessories all need to be considered when owning a horse.  Depending on how you’re housing the horse, the annual costs, for the average healthy horse, can cost close to $4,000.

Tips to know:

Some people use their Friesian horses for jumping; however, this is not encouraged as the weight and size of the horses are not intended for such activity.  The two demands that tend to increase the price includes riding and diving.  If the horse were registered and could perform these two tasks, then the prices you find will more than likely be on the higher end.

Of the 45,000 Friesian horses registered worldwide in the Dutch Friesch Paarden Stamboek and only 4,000 are found in North America.

Make sure the breeder buy the horse from is recognized by the Friesian Horse Association of North America (FHANA), a subsidiary of the original Dutch Friesian Horse registry (FPS).


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