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When Eventer Sarah Gibbons lived in the United Kingdom and was shopping around for a new stallion, she thought of the time when her friend showed her a Knabstrupper stallion that she was going to breed her mare to. “I liked the idea that they were toGibbons 1 the best of my knowledge the only spotted warmblood around,” says Sarah, “and were so easily trained, easy to work with, and so colorful without compromising on temperament.”

Knabstruppers are a rare breed, even in Europe. Originating in Denmark, they have the conformation of a Warmblood, with the colouring of an Appaloosa, although they developed independently of each other. However, in 1971, three Appaloosa stallions were imported to Denmark to add new blood to the breed. The first Knabstrupper was born in North America in 2002.


Credited with breeding the first Canadian-born Akhal Teke, Bold Vantage Farm out of High River, Alberta, is determined toBold Vantagesm continue breeding this rare breed to expose it to more Canadians. 

Originating in what is now Turkmenistan, there are now fewer than 4000 Akhal Tekes in the entire world. Just over 400 of these desert beauties can be found throughout North America and Canada is home to around 75.

Bringing it back to Alberta, Cynthia Swensen of Bold Vantage Farm has 25 purebred Akhal Tekes, and produces 3-5 foals a year.  The horses produced at Bold Vantage Farm are being readied for the disciplines of show-jumping and eventing primarily.

“It’s just really hard for people’s perceptions to change as to what the ‘ideal’ is for their sport,” comments Cynthia. “And honestly, at first glance, an Akhal Teke doesn’t usually fit the perception.  We need more people in the horse world that know ‘not to judge a book by its cover!’” 


Mike and Sheena Steenhart from Morning Sun Arabians were expecting five foals from this year’s foal crop.

They got six.

First-time dam, MSU Seraphim, was only bred last year on their vet’s advice that time off and pregnancy would help heal theRuthsm strained ligament in her back. After all, the seven year old mare and 2010 Canadian National Champion Hunter Pleasure Jr Horse was purchased as a show horse, not a broodmare.

“We were there when they were born,” says Mike. “So, the filly was born first and then the mare got up and we were looking at each other like ‘holy cow this thing is little.’ And then she got up and laid down the other way.”

Sheena laughs and says, “and we thought ‘that can’t mean there’s another one!’”


Suzanne Spierenburg had never heard of the Canadian Horse when she was introduced to them by Alfred Cartier. She rode his stallion, Fox, in Spruce aherd_in_the_fallMeadows Battle of the Breeds and was astounded at his jumping skills. “He was a real handful but he had the highest score of any horse there in jumping,” Suzanne comments.

It was enough to get her hooked. Suzanne started training Alfred’s young stock and eventually she and her husband Ron purchased three fillies and a stallion from him. Since 1997, Willow View Canadians has been proudly producing Canadians near Rocky Mountain House. That initial herd of four horses has grown into 30 horses today, with about 25 of them being Canadians.


It began in 2006 on a trip to Saskatchewan. A newly formed trio of Appaloosa aficionados hit the road with an empty horse trailer, a joint bank accountaRPR_High_Pressure_and_dam and a mission. They returned home to Alberta, the trailer considerably heavier, the bank account lighter.

They bought four broodmares bred by High Noon from Saskatchewan. “It was very exciting to bring them home with the 4 beautiful foals they had at side,” says Pat Hyndman, the “marketer” of the trio. “But the most exciting and memorable time was the following spring when these mares plus our own mares all produced beautiful foals from our own stallion, Mr. High and Mighty. They just kept coming out one after the other- each one so beautiful and healthy. We had eight foals that year.”

Rejean Gariepy, Pat Hyndman, Rick Miller comprise RPR Appaloosas. They were long-time friends and experienced horse people who saw an opportunity to partner and further promote the Appaloosa breed.



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