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The Flemish Horse, Dutch: Vlaams Paard, French: Cheval Flamand, is a Belgian breed of draught horse. It became extinct in the nineteenth century when it was merged with the Brabant to create the Belgian Draught. From about 1993 it was recreated from some stock kept by Amish people in the United States. A breed association, Het Vlaams Paard, was formed in 1999.[3] In 2005 the breed was officially approved by the Flemish government, and the breed association authorised to manage the stud-book.[4]

Flemish Horse
Vlaams Paard Agriflanders (cropped).jpg
Conservation statusDAD-IS (2019): at risk[1]
Other names
  • Vlaams Paard
  • Cheval flamand
  • Flamand
  • Gros trait du Hainaut
  • Flanders Horse
Country of originBelgium
  • 1.65–1.75 m[2]:164
Colourusually flaxen chestnut
Harrison Weir, 1861, Flemish Horse (right) with Clydesdale (left) and Cleveland Bay (behind)
Engraving after Louis Eugène Lambert, 1869


Flemish horses became famous in Mediaeval times. They were among the gifts sent by Charlemagne to the Abbasid caliph Haroun ar-Rashid in 807.[5]:23

It is an endangered breed.[1] In 2013 total numbers were about 100 head, with about 35 brood mares and 5 stallions.[6]:443


The Vlaams Paard, like several other draught breeds with Belgian Draught ancestry, may be affected by junctional epidermolysis bullosa.[7]:124 Unlike the Belgian Draught, it is not susceptible to chronic progressive lymphoedema.[8]:260


  1. ^ a b Breed data sheet: Vlaamse Paard / Belgium (Horse). Domestic Animal Diversity Information System of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Accessed April 2019.
  2. ^ Élise Rousseau, Yann Le Bris, Teresa Lavender Fagan (2017). Horses of the World. Princeton: Princeton University Press. ISBN 9780691167206.
  3. ^ Histoire (in French). Het Vlaams Paard. Accessed June 2019.
  4. ^ Y. Leterme (29 July 2005). 21 Juin 2005 - Arrêté ministériel portant agrément de l'a.s.b.l. "Vlaams Paard" (in French). Le Moniteur Belge. Accessed June 2019.
  5. ^ Hynderick de Theulegoet (1911). Monographie du cheval de trait belge (in French). Bruxelles: Librairie nationale d'art et d'histoire.
  6. ^ Valerie Porter, Lawrence Alderson, Stephen J.G. Hall, D. Phillip Sponenberg (2016). Mason's World Encyclopedia of Livestock Breeds and Breeding (sixth edition). Wallingford: CABI. ISBN 9781780647944.
  7. ^ John D. Baird, Lee V. Millon, Susan Dileanis, M. Cecilia T. Penedo, Alexandra Charlesworth, Flavia Spirito, Guerrino Meneguzzi (2003). Junctional epidermolysis bullosa in Belgian draft horses. Proceedings of the American Association of Equine Practitioners 49: 122–126.
  8. ^ Kirsten De Keyser, Steven Janssens, Nadine Buys (2015). Chronic progressive lymphoedema in draught horses. Equine Veterinary Journal 47 (3): 260–266. ISSN 0425-1644. doi:10.1111/evj.122561.