Breeding my mare for the first time

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Posted 12/7/2009 11:30:38 AM


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I'm breeding my 12 y/o (she'll be 13 when i breed her) QH bay mare around March.  This is my first time to breed a horse, and I don't know very much about it.  Are there other plants toxic to the pregnant mare, like fescue?  Do I need to keep her seperate from my geldings at first (one is proud cut)?  It's about 11 months being pregnant, right?  I don't have a barn, so I was going to put her in the round pen when it got close to time to foal. 

Please share info or random tips on this stuff!  []  Thanks!

If you keep doing the same thing, you'll keep getting the same thing.

Post #311151
Posted 12/7/2009 11:53:56 AM


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Please, please, please do not breed your mare. I mean no offense, but it should be left to people who have the proper knowledge, experience and facilities for breeding. There are so many unwanted horses out there because of all the people who breed their mare "cause it would be fun" or "cause I want to raise a foal myself". The best advice I can give it to spend a LOT of time at a breeding farm. Learn how the whole process works. Give yourself the chance to fully understand the risks and responsibilities involved. Breeding horses is something that should not be taken lightly. Quality mares should be bred to quality stallions by people who can deal with any and all complications that might arise throughout the entire process. Consider adopting a foal that is already alive and in need of a good home.

 

I'd sooner have that horse happy than go to heaven." -- Velvet Brown in NATIONAL VELVET.

Post #311153
Posted 12/7/2009 1:59:09 PM


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Good luck with the upcoming little one and the adventure of breeding your mare.

I don't have much experience other than second hand and from what I have seen...breeding is dangerous and complicated and costly. Horses can be very difficult to breed. I know at my stables they lost two foals and two mares in the past year. Maybe it was just a very bad year, maybe it was bad luck...but my understanding is that baby horses are just more fragile than say your typical cow or goat.

Ask yourself why you're breeding and if you really 'need' to. Do you have experience with young (baby) horses? Is this new life worth the risk of losing one or both of the horses if bad luck strikes?





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Post #311159
Posted 12/7/2009 3:24:40 PM


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Thank you both for your concern.  I have thought long and hard about this.  I can't convince you that my mare is worthy to be bred, but I believe she is.  Also, I am breeding for a well conformed foal that I can train and compete with.  I don't want the foal out of the goofy mare that got in the pen with the crazy stud. []

I understand that there are many unwanted foals out there, and mine will not be one of them.

If you keep doing the same thing, you'll keep getting the same thing.

Post #311173
Posted 12/7/2009 3:57:42 PM


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[quote]On Par (12/7/2009)
Thank you both for your concern. I have thought long and hard about this. I can't convince you that my mare is worthy to be bred, but I believe she is. Also, I am breeding for a well conformed foal that I can train and compete with. I don't want the foal out of the goofy mare that got in the pen with the crazy stud. []

I understand that there are many unwanted foals out there, and mine will not be one of them.[/quote]

I have had friends who have both bred their mounts to stallions and I honestly will say that I would be terrified to breed my mare - even if she was a fancy $400,000 conformationally correct horse. Why? Because so many things can go wrong. The mare can die during labor, the foal can die, both can die, the vet bills, the cost of upkeep... it just scares the crap outta me!

If it is your first time breeding and you believe that your mare is conformationally correct and will produce a show stunner, I suggest you talk to your vet long and hard about the procedure of foaling, caring for a foal and the breeding process. A Vet is the ultimate book in keeping your mare healthy. I would also suggest in getting a LOT of books and reading up everything and ANYTHING you can, including things that can go wrong during pregnancy and delivery. Horse breeding is a very serious thing, it should never be taken lightly, ever. So many things can go wrong and so many things can go right.





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Post #311181
Posted 12/7/2009 8:31:55 PM


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I understand that it would not be an "unwanted" foal. Of course you want it. It will be cute and fun. The real question is can you handle it? You haven't said anything to indicate that you have experience handling foals. It's not as simple as you might think, especially if you have a colt who is full of himself. I have dealt first hand with many people who had the same attitude. They believed that their mare was worth breeding so they did it without thinking about how much is involved.

One girl I knew ended up with a colt that she thought would eventually be her future superstar. Unfortunately, she had no experience raising a foal and it quickly turned into a very dangerous situation. She didn't work with him every day and when she did he wasn't handled properly. He got more and more bull-headed and mouthy with each passing day. Before long he was lunging at everyone with his teeth bared. It was impossible to enter his stall without something (pitchfork, whip) to protect yourself. She got pissy with me because I didn't spend enough time working with HER animal to teach him manners. I was only paid to feed and clean stalls, not to train. Because of her irresponsibility my job became much more dangerous than it ever should have been. She quickly became scared of her own horse.

Foals are a LOT of work. You have to spend time with them EVERY SINGLE DAY. You will constantly have to discipline in order to raise an animal that respects people and knows it's place. They're a lot like kids, they are always testing to see what they can get away with. If they get away with something once it will be twice as hard to correct them the next time. People don't realize what a handful foals can be. I have seen a foal rear up and strike at someone and chase the person out of the field. If you don't know what you're doing it's really easy to screw them up and create a monster that no one wants to deal with.

On top of all that, you mentioned that you do not have a barn. It sounds like you are not properly set up to have a pregnant mare. She should be inside at night as it gets close to foaling time. She should have a warm, quiet stall where she can feel safe and relax. She will need to be monitored closely. Your vet will be rather upset with you if she foals at night in the rain and you have to call for his/her help. It's just not the ideal situation for foaling. Yes, they do it in the wild, but your horse is domesticated. You made the choice to own her, you are expected to make responsible decisions and care for her the best you can. If you don't have the FACILITIES, KNOWLEDGE and EXPERIENCE than you have no business breeding.

If I seem harsh and/or offensive I apologize, but it's how I feel and I'm not going to sugarcoat it.


 

I'd sooner have that horse happy than go to heaven." -- Velvet Brown in NATIONAL VELVET.

Post #311199
Posted 12/8/2009 8:27:55 AM


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Thanks again for your helpful posts.  But I must ask that you stop trying to convince me not to breed my mare.  I know the risks, and I know what will be required to raise the foal.  Please understand that I'm not going to change my mind becuase somebody I've never met asks me to over the internet.

So, if somebody can help me make this the safest possible for my mare, me, and the foal, that would be nice.  I will breed my mare, and I want to know if I need to be aware of certain plants, feeds, etc to watch out for.  Thanks!

And yes, I believe I can handle a foal.  Again, nothing I can say will convince anyone, since I could be lying, but I have full confidence in my abilities.  Fun fact: I bought a two /o and she turned out to be a rather dangerous horse.  I always cautious around her, but I was able to teach her that I am boss, and am to be respected.  She was halter broke when we bought her, now she fully accepts saddle, bridle, and rider.

If you keep doing the same thing, you'll keep getting the same thing.

Post #311204
Posted 12/8/2009 9:55:32 AM


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You see, we have several professional breeders among us, and I train for a living; Hoodsey I know, does both. Others are apprenticing or studying equine science in college. All of us just have seen firsthand the unfortunate results of when people, with perfectly good intentions, perhaps even a rough idea of what to do or some experience, choose to breed. It's too bad if we can't change your mind, and I for one respect your right to do whatever the heck you want - until the point that it hurts someone or something else. I can only pray that your determination pays off in a successful outcome.

So please understand that I'm not trying to chase you off, but I think that as far as advice/help for breeding your mare goes, you might want to try a different forum. This forum is very strongly anti-backyard breeding as you've discovered, and I doubt you'll get much in the way of support on your chosen path here.


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Post #311209
Posted 12/8/2009 12:45:38 PM


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Ph! *blows hair out of face in annoyance*  I am glad to see that people are concerned.  Let's try a different approach, since it seems no one wants to help me help my mare.

I'm not breeding my mare, I dunno what ya'll are talking about. (wink, wink)  I was wondering, when you breed your horses, what are precautions that you take to help ensure a healthy baby?  Like, special feeds or hay.  Maybe a special turnout schedule?  What plants do your check your pasture for?

Also, how big is a foaling stall?  And is that the same stall you'd keep mother and baby in?

If you keep doing the same thing, you'll keep getting the same thing.

Post #311218
Posted 12/8/2009 4:22:01 PM


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[quote]On Par (12/8/2009)
Ph! *blows hair out of face in annoyance* I am glad to see that people are concerned. Let's try a different approach, since it seems no one wants to help me help my mare.

I'm not breeding my mare, I dunno what ya'll are talking about. (wink, wink) I was wondering, when you breed your horses, what are precautions that you take to help ensure a healthy baby? Like, special feeds or hay. Maybe a special turnout schedule? What plants do your check your pasture for?

Also, how big is a foaling stall? And is that the same stall you'd keep mother and baby in?[/quote]

Please don't be rude. Woodrow was actually very helpful.

I already stated what you should do. If you don't know what you need before breeding, talk to your VET. You will be dealing with them a lot when your mare is bred. Also, I suggest maybe holding off on breeding until you actually KNOW things. You said you know all about breeding horses and the foal and care involved, but here you are, asking questions. Get information then breed.





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