What You Need to Know About Importing a Horse from Europe

While there is much to know about when importing a horse from Europe, one thing is for certain – when you work with the Alex Nichols Agency (ANA), who has been importing horses from Europe to the USA since 1962, your horse is in good hands. Our business is built on providing a complete service for our customers. This means giving clients that fly their horses with us a clear picture of what to expect, how much it will cost, and how quickly we can do it. We pride ourselves on zero surprises to our customers.

The Alex Nichols Agency imports horses from Europe to all major ports in the US. We use a network of affiliated offices worldwide, which makes our agency nimble and able to navigate through all local formalities and government laws. The agency imports from Europe to New York, Miami, Chicago and Los Angeles several times a week, so scheduling your last-minute horse air transportation is rarely a problem. For example, your horse can usually be on a flight within 7-14 days. In addition, The Alex Nichols Agency has direct computer access to the USDA (US Department of Agriculture), which allows for checking on availability of quarantine space and making a reservation at a moment’s notice. The Alex Nichols Agency takes your horse’s specific needs into account, as well as other factors like proximity to the destination. In addition, ANA can arrange the final delivery of your horse. This is one of the many reasons that the Alex Nichols Agency has a well-established reputation for assisting importers find the best combination of important factors such as quality of equipment, most direct route, and overall price.

When you need horse transportation by air, give the Alex Nichols Agency a call for a written quote. It will be valid for 30 days and if you are planning to ship more than one horse, we take into consideration the total quantity of horses to provide the best price. Unless other arrangements are made, the agency requires payment 72 hours prior to scheduled departure by bank wire transfer. The agency also accepts Mastercard, Visa and American Express, for which there is a convenience fee of three percent. Horses coming from 99.99 percent of the world will arrive in the US duty free. However, US Customs charges a small fee which ranges from $27.75 to $538.40 depending on the declared value of the horse. Another important factor to consider when shipping your horse to the US is whether you require insurance. It is important to note that while insurance is not part of the basic price for your horse’s air transport, the agency does offer a wide range of insurance options at an additional cost. Insurance coverage must be requested in writing.

Another important factor to consider when transporting your horse by air to the US is the size of your horse’s stall. If your horse is a normal adult horse, with no known shipping vices, then your horse will do just fine being shipped in a normal sized air stable or JET STALL. If your horse is a heavy draft breed, then the agency will provide a stall plus a larger JET STALL.

The next step for transporting a horse by air is to ensure that your horse has had the correct prescreening tests. Although the USDA does not require a blood test prior to shipment, for stallions or mares over the age of 2 that are originating from Contagious Equine Metritis (CEM) affected countries, the US does require proof of negative tests for CEM, which is a highly contagious equine venereal disease, within30 days of shipment. While in post arrival quarantine, all horses are required to test negative for four diseases: EIA (coggins), dourine, glanders, and piroplasmosis. You should have your horse tested within 30 days of shipment. With piroplasmosis, it is very important for the lab to use cELISA and the Compliment Fixation (CF) test because there have been instances when horses have not been released from post-arrival quarantine because the CF test was not done in Europe and the exporter andowner relied on the cElisa test as proof of the horse’s eligibility for transport. These tests gauge different periods of exposure to infection, so the USDA screens for both and sometimes horses come up positive for the CF test and negative for the cElisa test. The Alex Nichols Agency oversees all veterinarian work and health documentation for a hassle-free process.

The following step for importing a horse to the US is to locate and arrange the most suitable CEM quarantine for your horse. Horses or equines coming from CEM countries affected by CEM, require three days post-arrival quarantine. The list of countries from which a horse would be required for a 3-day quarantine can be found here, as well as the list of CEM countries. It is important to note that somehorses require a seven-day post arrival quarantine. The list of these countries can be found here.

The final step for transporting a horse by air to the US is to determine if a horse is affected by African Horse Sickness. Horses affected by this require a 60-day quarantine upon arrival to the US. The list of countries affected by African Horse Sickness includes Oman, the Yemen Arab Republic, and all countries in Africa except Morocco.

The bottom line is: ANA will be with you every step of the way. When you transport your horse by air to the US, you can rest assured that we handle all steps for you and will keep you appraised every step of the way. The Alex Nichols Agency makes horse transportation to the US easy and stress free.

What Will My Horse Be Fed During Quarantine?

If you are wondering what your horse will be fed during quarantine, please note that the UDSA import centers provide Timothy hay. By the way, you cannot visit your horse when it is in quarantine.

What Kind Of Care Is Provided At USDA Quarantine?

After the horses arrive the quarantine vet will assess the condition of the horse and take the horses temperature. If there is any issue with the horse we are notified immediately, we will then report to you on the vet’s findings. We do have blanket permission for our company’s private Equine Veterinarian to come to the quarantine should any of your customer’s horses need treatment or diagnostics.

Looking To Ship Your Horse By Air?

Contact us today for a Quote