This thread is very helpful. Thanks to all who have chimed in!
For those who have stated that keeping mares in Europe is "cost effective", could you possibly PM me and give me a clue as to what a comepeteive monthly board price might be? For those who have leased, what were the terms?
I work with Friesian Sporthorses, and I like to use primarily Friesian mares (and the Warmblood stallions I'm interested in right now are also Dutch) but I'm not completely adverse to using Warmblood mares. But this is my primary reason for thinking "The Netherlands" over Germany.
Well it can range from to. As I do not have an own farm (and am often on international business trips) I am in the same sort of situation. I needed a farm I can trust and that does things the way I do want it to be done. Of course one can find places that advertise 130€ per month, But honestly I have no clue how they do it and what happens not to happen.
I want a place where I know appart from eating gras, they get a balanced feed. Not just throwing oats in a big pot but feeding them including minerals or whatever they need for their current situation (lactating, in foal, growing up...). I want someone who has an eye on them daily. Not just looking with some specs at the feild "Ah 10 in it, standing, all is well" , but a is water running, fences look good, anyone having a wound ? That is time consuming and hence needs to be paid ! This close watch pays of for me in the end as heat cycles are much faster detected and the mares are better known. Hence vet is only doing one or two checks and not every two days over weeks. Better for my purse and for the mare. I also want fair and good handling of my horses. All my young ones are handled so that they easily trailer, can be lead or tied already at early age. Not something you can count on in Germany at all places. A lot of breeders do not handle their own and also not the customer's horses in such a training way. So yes, you find cheap places, but you get cheap for cheap. And it also costs time plus scills (language, video, computer...) to update the owners with pics, video etc. Also something that not every german breeder understands and is able to provide.
As people summarized: you have to get to know the right people with recommendations that one can really trust. I have been around with people from CDN or the US to look at their horses and there have been cases where I really needed to stay calm and polite towards the people these horses were boarded at.
So expect more something of the 7,50-10€ per day if you want top quality.
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