Kaapse / Cape Boerperd Breeders Society


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The Cape Boerperd

A Horse from South Africa for South Africa and all horse sport codes

link to DVD

Jumping; harness; 3 Gaited; Work


5 gaited; Endurance; Western; dressage etc.







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SA Championship results 2015

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SA Championships 2010 - results and Profiles on great Horses

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General info on the breed:

The Cape Boerperd breeders Society was formed in 1948. A group of horse enthusiasts realized that the horse was fast disappearing in our mechanical age. These people realized how popular the old Cape Horse was throughout the world. The Cape Horse was famous for it’s hardiness, endurance and it’s ability to work hard on minimum feed, yet still maintain condition. It was all these outstanding characteristics that made these people to raise a breed that would display all these characteristics and improve and refined to be ideally suitable for South African conditions. The Cape Boerperd is a multi purpose horse that can be used for work, pleasure and show.


The Cape Boerperd is used for hard demanding farm work, thus it must be a hardy animal with plenty of stamina. It must be comfortable to ride, with enough speed at various gaits to make it a pleasure horse for all who ride it. It must possess enough style and action to compete favorable in the show ring in any breeding, saddle or harness class. The Cape Boerperd is well known for it’s good temperament and thus very suitable for riders of all ages as a work, pleasure and sport horse. At present there are keen interest in the Cape Boerperd from other countries. Members of the Cape Boerperd breeders Society are spread across the country with a bigger concentration in the Eastern and Western Cape and Griekwas.

The Kaapse Boerperd (“Cape Boer Horse”) differs significantly from any other existing horse breed with regard to basic conformation. In 1948, a group of concerned horse breeders felt that the early Kaapse perd faces possible extinction and therefore initiated formal steps to breed and improve this horse breed. The early Cape Horse was universally popular and was one of the first horse breeds to be exported from South Africa to Australia. The Kaapse horse was renowned for its endurance as well as the ability to work hard on a meager diet and still remain in a fairly good condition. The horses had an easy, comfortable gait and could carry a big rider effortlessly over difficult terrain for extended periods.
These and other fine characteristics of the early Kaapse horse prompted breeders to develop a horse breed with the same features and to improve and upgrade the breed at the same time be a pleasurable riding horse with a good temperament. It was considered important that the horse had to be able to hold its own in the show ring.
Attempts were made to identify suitable breeding animals, but because of exports, droughts and other disasters, suitable animals were hard to come by. Stallions were especially rare. It was then decided to make use of stallions of other breeds that conformed to the basic requirements of the breed and which could make a positive contribution in terms of establishing the fledgling breed. Breeds considered in this regard included the Arab, Hackney and Flemish Horse and the American Saddle Horse. The saddle horse were selected because of the fact the Boerperd mares were used as foundation mares in the breeding program of the Saddle horse in South Africa. Stallions of these breeds were used in conjunction with Boerperd stallions to breed foals conforming to all the breed standards.
It was decided that all horses would be subjected to inspection and that those which passed would be entered into a foundation register. Foals born from foundation parents would then, after passing inspection, be entered into an upgrading programme. A stringent selection policy ensured that only desirable animals were allowed to the upgrading programme. Mares became eligible for inspection at two years of age and stallions at three years of age. The Boerperd Herd Book was initially closed in 1964 and no more “foreign” horses were accepted to the breeding programme. The herd Book was, however, re-opened in 1970 for a period of one year. In 1981 the South African Stud Book and Livestock Improvement Associations accepted the affiliation of the Kaapse Boerperd Breeders’ Society and animals with the desired qualities were again accepted into the re-opened Herd Book of F1 animals, after passing inspection.

In 1993 it was realized that the Kaapse Boerperd was beginning to lose its identity. A decision was taken to nominate specific stallions from other breeds to enhance some of the traits of the Kaapse Boerperd. In 1994 eight stallions were nominated and inspected by a specially appointed inspector. The progeny of these stallions were entered into the herd book as F1-animals. The Society followed the normal upgrading programme and no animal was registered without passing an inspection.

In 1999 the Herd Book was closed and no foreign material are permitted.
The Cape Boerperd was declared an indigenous developed breed.
With the long history of registration as a developing breed with horses registered as F1 – F4 Studbook and the Director of Animal improvement suggested that horses will be classified as follows in the future:

Basic herdbook will include all basic stock plus F1 animals of which the father and mother are not known. All F1 animals with parents on record plus offspring of basic herd animals mated to F2 stallions and higher will be registered in Herdbook A. All F2 animals with both parents on record will be registered in herdbook B. All F2 animals and higher with both parents and grandparents on record will be registered in the SP or fully registered section.

The ideal Kaapse Boerperd must be of medium height (between 14,2 and 16 hands), strong without being clumsy and have quality, especially in its legs. As the Kaapse Boerperd is primarily used for arduous and demanding farm work, the horse must be robust, have good endurance and be fast and surefooted. The Kaapse Boerperd should ride comfortably with enough speed in its various gaits. This will ensure that it can also be used as a pleasure horse. Above all, the horse should not tire its rider. It is also important that the Kaapse Boerperd have enough grace and action to hold its own in the show ring, in breeding and in the riding classes.

A Kaapse Boerperd is allowed to display a lot of quality, as well as a fiery posture and action, on condition that it meets the stringent standards of conformation and type. If an animal has an unnatural stretch for a stance, which may hide aspects of its conformation and appearance, it is desirable to let such an animal move around. The Kaapse Boerperd has a proud head and high rolling action. The horse has a good temperament and may be ridden comfortably, but with action, grace and style. The horse does not scare easily and is not excitable. The Kaapse Boerperd has the ability to maintain good condition on a meager diet and adapts to a wide variety of circumstances.

The Kaapse Boerperd is a registered breed with SA Studbook. At present there are about 650 horses on record. The Breed Society and SA Studbook is in the process of updating all records.
All foals from registered parents are registered in the foal book. At age three these young horses are inspected by a panel of 3 or more inspectors appointed by the Breed Society.
Only about 25% of all registered Cape Boerperd end up in the “Saddleseat” showring. The rest are used for pleasure riding, dressage, jumping etc.

The Cape Boerperd is a multi purpose horse that can be used for work, pleasure and show. The Cape Boerperd is a very versatile horse and it is the aim of the Breeders Society to show the Cape Boerperd in all its diverse forms. We have a “saddle seat” as well as a “standard seat” division at shows. Horses are also exhibited in harness classes as well as in Carriage driving. Cape Boerperd are also used for show jumping, dressage, out rides, endurance riding and game viewing.

During 1997 a rulebook for the Cape Boerperd was published by the Breeders Society. This book is updated annually and is available in English and Afrikaans. This rulebook is used by judges, breeders etc to learn more about the Kaapse Boerperd.

The year 2001 saw the start of a website for the Cape Boerperd. www.capeboerperd.co.za  Information about the horse itself, the SA Boerperd Amateur union, board members, the youth program, “For Sale” page etc are available on this website.

Cape Boerperd Youth Program (CBYP)

In 2004 the Cape Boerperd Youth program was started.
The youth program of the Cape Boerperd Breeders Society and the SA Boerperd Amateur Union aims to introduce the Cape Boerperd and it’s versatility to all horse loving children. We aim to involve the youth in all aspects of the horse industry. The CBYP is a program for young people with a common interest in horses. CBYP offers a variety of programs and competitions that challenge members to become involved, to learn, and to develop competence in all areas of the horse industry.
While working with the Cape Boerperd, members develop a sense of sportsmanship and fair play, learn citizenship skills, master leadership skills and develop discipline and responsibility for themselves and their horses.
The CBYP is designed to bring out the best in its members - no
matter what their skills and interests

Since the early 1992 regular Boerperd courses are held under the auspices of the Breeders Society and the Amateur Union. Since the early 1900 regular symposiums and judges courses are also presented by these societies.

(SABAU) SA Boerperd Amateur Union

In 1990 a long awaited ideal was realized when the Cape Boerperd Breeders Society initiated a sport organization using the Cape Boerperd as sport horse. In 1990 this organization was allocated Amateur Status by the Dept of Sport and SABAU was formed.
The country is divided into provinces. In each province riders compete at club and regional shows and competitions. From these results provincial teams are selected to compete for the “Pietie Joubert” shield at the South African Boerperd Amateur Championships. A National team is selected on an annual basis to compete against teams from other countries.
The SA Boerperd Amateur Union (SABAU) caters for its members in a lot of different divisions. At present there are a “Saddleseat” division, a “Standard” seat division, “Pleasure” ride and “Carriage” driving division.
Development and advanced training courses are held on a regular basis. SABAU is a fast growing organization with members from all walks of life. SABAU is a member of ESSASA.
SABAU chairman:

Participation in shows is growing continuously and because of its affordability, the Kaapse Boerperd is enjoying growing popularity.

Links to members websites