Freiberger Horses
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About Freiberger HorsesAbout Freiberger Horses



Freibergers (also known as the Franches-Montagnes) are a draft horse from Switzerland. They were widely used as draft and pack horse in the Swiss army. Breeding used to be heavily subsidized in Switzerland. Freibergers are the last representative of the light cold blood horse in Europe. Each year at the Marche Concours in Saignelegier, on the second weekend in August, Freibergers demonstrate how versatile they are in a variety of shows and competitions. Due to their character, willingness, and versatility, they are suitable for both driving and riding; they are a popular mount.    

They were developed by crossing native Bernese Jura horses with English Thoroughbreds, Anglo-Norman, Ardennais, and Arabian horses. There are two distinct types within the Freiberger breed: a broader, heavier stamp of horse with more muscle development and a lighter, finer type.  

Freiberger horses are found in Italy as well as all over Europe. They are used for light draft, farm work, riding, and competitive riding. They are a mountain horse and do very well in hilly and mountainous areas, being naturally sure-footed and tough and, in many cases, far better equipped for working this type of land than a tractor. They were widely used by the upland farmers of the Jura region and are also popular with the Swiss army, who favour them as pack animals and for use during patrols.

Many Freibergers trace back to one stallion, called Valliant, who had a mix of Norfolk Roadster, Anglo-Norman, and English Hunter blood in him. Another influential stallion was Urus, who also contained Norman blood. They are bred at the Avenches stud, the Federal stud, where their breeding is strictly regulated. They mature quickly into well-balanced, active, and calm animals making them easy work companions.

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