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View Full Version : How common is it for big farms to breed for broodmares?



City Ponies
Oct. 19, 2009, 08:18 PM
So I has *assumed* that my new mare had at least been track broke, too slow, and just never raced. But then a lightbulb went off, why would she have been bred as a 4 yr old if she didn't show any signs of running herself? Wouldn't she have been just either rehomed or sent down the line? So now I'm pondering a bit and a little puzzled. Is it common for big breeding farms, like Harris where she was bred, to breed strickly just for a broodmare? Harris' website has pictures of all the foals EXCEPT her foal picture (though she was listed as being born) and none of her foal in 03' but all the other foals. She was sold through Barrets and her two foals sold through auction (both under $10k). She was not offered herself as a yearling or 2 yr old through sale which most of their horses seem to be. Not tattoo'd though I have her papers and listed as unraced.

I know some buyers will purchase yearlings at sales as broodmare prospects but from what I can interpret, it was almost like she was bred as a replacement for her dam who had 1 foal after my mare.

She has great conformation, completely sound, been a broodmare (from what I can tell since she was 4 -now 11). It's just dawning on me, that I may have an unbroke 11 yr old mare :eek::lol::cool: Either way, I have very high hopes for her, just make take a little longer than expected :yes:

Pronzini
Oct. 19, 2009, 09:13 PM
So I has *assumed* that my new mare had at least been track broke, too slow, and just never raced. But then a lightbulb went off, why would she have been bred as a 4 yr old if she didn't show any signs of running herself? Wouldn't she have been just either rehomed or sent down the line? So now I'm pondering a bit and a little puzzled. Is it common for big breeding farms, like Harris where she was bred, to breed strickly just for a broodmare? Harris' website has pictures of all the foals EXCEPT her foal picture (though she was listed as being born) and none of her foal in 03' but all the other foals. She was sold through Barrets and her two foals sold through auction (both under $10k). She was not offered herself as a yearling or 2 yr old through sale which most of their horses seem to be. Not tattoo'd though I have her papers and listed as unraced.

I know some buyers will purchase yearlings at sales as broodmare prospects but from what I can interpret, it was almost like she was bred as a replacement for her dam who had 1 foal after my mare.

She has great conformation, completely sound, been a broodmare (from what I can tell since she was 4 -now 11). It's just dawning on me, that I may have an unbroke 11 yr old mare :eek::lol::cool: Either way, I have very high hopes for her, just make take a little longer than expected :yes:

I doubt she was bred as a broodmare. Most probably she had a soundness issue either during training or as she was being raised and the breeder(s) didn't want to put the money into bringing her up to the track if they doubted she'd make it. The fact they didn't put her foal picture up implies something went awry early because that's a marketing gimmick.

Was she bred by Harris or at Harris? There's a difference.

Timex
Oct. 19, 2009, 09:51 PM
Doubtful. There's lots of reasons why horses don't make it to the track, from soundness (even the most minor of things that you might never have seen in your mare, but she exhibited in training) to temperment to finances to speed (or lack thereof). Sure, some people consider a long-term plan, like whether or not breeding would be an option, but I've never seen a breeder specifically breed just for a broodmare. FWIW, my big broodie was bred as a 4 year old too. Not so uncommon.

City Ponies
Oct. 20, 2009, 08:35 AM
She was bred by Harris, listed as the owners til she was 6, sold by Harris Farms in 2004. Hymm. Maybe speed was a factor, or a very early injury. I've seen a lot of horses that just don't make it for injury/speed related that still have tattoos b/c most tracks I've known require it for gate training (East Coast). She's a Cali baby, IDK the rules at DelMar and such. I'll try to do a little more digging. We haven't thrown a saddle on her yet, but she seems to really grasp the concept of lunging like she's been there done that.

SleepyFox
Oct. 20, 2009, 09:37 AM
She was bred by Harris, listed as the owners til she was 6, sold by Harris Farms in 2004. Hymm. Maybe speed was a factor, or a very early injury. I've seen a lot of horses that just don't make it for injury/speed related that still have tattoos b/c most tracks I've known require it for gate training (East Coast). She's a Cali baby, IDK the rules at DelMar and such.

A horse needs a tattoo for an official gate work, which is usually done fairly close to starting. So, just because she doesn't have one doesn't necessarily mean she doesn't have much under saddle training. (But, I'd err on the safe side and assume she doesn't. :)).

Pronzini
Oct. 20, 2009, 10:02 AM
A horse needs a tattoo for an official gate work, which is usually done fairly close to starting. So, just because she doesn't have one doesn't necessarily mean she doesn't have much under saddle training. (But, I'd err on the safe side and assume she doesn't. :)).

In California the rules are different. You can have the horse tattooed the day before the race. In fact, I may have had a horse tattooed the morning of her debut but I don't remember now.

monicabee
Oct. 20, 2009, 10:52 AM
It really depends how large the track is, East Coast or West. So many trainees wash out that the major NY tracks don't waste their tattooer's time until the horse is actually entered - my horse was tattooed the day before his first race. Here in the PNW, there are plenty of tattoed horses who have never been in a race, so obviously it is different.

There are so many reasons youngsters leave training - injury, lack of speed, breathing problems, foot issues, bucked shins - sometimes not serious things but with $100 a day in training fees to keep them at the track, they go back to the farm for layups. If it is spring and someone has a stallion share, it is easy to see how a filly might become a broodmare rather than return to racing -- at least at a time when there was more money in breeding than in racing. She might indeed never have gone to the track at all. As for being four, she could have conceived and lost the foal before putting one on the ground. All hypotheticals, but all entirely possible.

You probably know this already, but being a broodie can be challenging for a mare's body. I started one with ten minutes of walking and slowly built up from there because she just had no muscle - it was amazing how unfit she was at thirteen. And that's the muscle part - the bone and tendons take twice as long to be readied for real work.

So if you presume your mare is not started, you can do some of that fitness and training work from the ground. You can get her going exactly the way you like, soft and responsive, which will help when you get aboard.

Good luck with her and have fun.