We see our horses as partners and we value the welfare of the horses.
The majority of the horses that live on the Desempenho Farm were bred, gentled and trained by us and are of the Brazilian breed of gaited horses Mangalarga Marchador. We have been breeding horses for over 30 years and see them as a large family. Recently we decided to stop breeding horses, but before stopping completely we bred some Lusitano horses and Lusitano - Mangalarga Marchador cross. Through our our partner Caminhos Mata Atlântica we have access to Peruvian Paso horses, who are great for trial rides.
We also have some horses, which were donated by their owners, which were retrained.
The main part of our herd live semi-free in large fields with ample access to water, in separate groups of males and females. The horses can interact amongst themselves and with humans.
Photo : Mares in the field (Ariane Janér)
Some horses live in smaller enclosures or in a combination of stable and enclosure. We do this with horses we host and also with horses, who did not adapt well to life in the herd.
Every morning the horses come in for breakfast. This also permits the stable hands to check how they are and separate the horses that will be used for lessons.
We teach all our pupils to clean, groom, saddle and unsaddle the horse and how to give a bath after the ride, under supervision of the stable hands.
This "natural" management translates into confident and content horses.