The Friesian Kind
Recently, we did a photo shoot with a majestic beast, named Douwe Van De Badwi, aka Valentino. This particular creature is a beautiful Friesian horse owned by local resident, Allison Lampuri.
The Triangle area has a vibrant equestrian subculture, however, not many people own Friesians.
Friesians originated in the Netherlands. Though the breed is generally known for their black coats, Friesians can also be chestnut or bay. Friesians nearly became extinct on several occasions throughout history, but these days, the breed is growing in numbers and popularity.
We thought we’d chat with several Friesian owners, including Allison, to learn more about these stunning equines.
Allison, who also owns a Paint horse, purchased 10-year-old Valentino from a marketplace in Geer, South Carolina. Lampuri grew up on a horse farm and has been riding since she was 2 years of age. She was drawn to acquire Valentino because she loves the overall beautiful look, and graceful movement of Friesian horses.
For others who are thinking about getting a Friesian of their own, Allison says, “They are amazing horses but make sure you have plenty of time to maintain the upkeep on all the hair they have!”
Laura Henagan, the owner and operator of Southern Charm Carriages based out of Selma, is the proud owner of Buckeye’s Jet, aka Leo. Laura had wanted a Friesian since childhood and finally acquired 8-year-old Leo to employ as a driving and riding horse for her business. She loves how fluid and graceful Friesians’ movements are and finds their long black manes/tails and feathered feet to be visually appealing.
Laura advises potential Friesian owners that the breed “can be more high strung, so I wouldn’t recommend them to a beginner horse person.”
Sonya Weaver proudly owns a 7-year-old, registered Friesian stallion named Marten TA (aka Bear). At her sport horse breeding farm, she stands two more stallions beside Bear.
Sonya jokes that Friesians “really are a different breed (who) think that they’re furry humans.” She muses that the breed is sensitive and bonds very strongly to their humans, whom they strive to please (sometimes to a fault).
For those interested in owning their own Friesian in the future, Sonya says, “The breed comes with its own special set of interesting issues. They can be prone to certain genetic faults. Research breeders well and find one that breeds for the right reasons, one who focuses on finding outstanding homes for their horses.”
This piece on Friesian horses was written by frequent contributor to The Papur, Lauren Connelly.