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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 2, 2006
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    Default This is probably a stupid question...

    but can a herd sire, a stallion that lives out with his mares, also be a working a stallion under saddle? Or do they not tolerate being away from the herd?



  2. #2
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    Mar. 12, 2006
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    Western South Dakota
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    Our stallion, Lion King is fine that way. He can spend the night with the ladies, then come into the barn during the day for riding. Although the first thing he's always done after breakfast was take a long nap! He is fine at the shows too. Gets along well with everyone. I think a lot depends on the individual stallion. Lion King does not pursue the mares. If they aren't interested, he just goes to eating. If they are interested, they come to him, he does his duties and goes back to eating.



  3. #3
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    Jun. 11, 2004
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    Still here ~ not yet there
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    I think it really does depend. Kinor fretted so when he was with the mares that when I pulled him out to give him his grain ('cause if I tried to feed him with the mares, they would eat it all), he would only eat 1/2 of it because he was so worried about his mares.

    And he was constantly herding them, etc. Near the end of breeding season he looked like a scarecrow. That's why I went back to live cover in hand instead of pasture breeding...



  4. #4
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    Jan. 2, 2006
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    Colorado
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    Default

    Thanks. I wondered if it was possible.



  5. #5
    jsommer Guest

    Default

    Absolutely possible! My stallion lives with his mares all winter but when we pull him out, he is a wonderful pony to ride and show. (It is actually the mares that fret and worry when we take him from his girls.)



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct. 4, 2003
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    Oklahoma
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    We have had some come to the stallion test who were herd stallions and the situation was very tough for them. None were used to being stalled and never settled. Both were much more horse aggressive than the other stallions. I am sure that the owners had no problems schooling these stallions at home, but I don't see how they could ever be competition horses when managed in this fashion. Ultimately, we are breeding for competition horses and not mustangs.
    Silver Creek Farms - home of Apiro & Validation
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  7. #7
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    Aug. 14, 2004
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    Default

    where are all the pony peeps who keep stallions in herds and compete?

    i think it is a bit silly to say a stallion cant be outside with others and not be a competition horse.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar. 12, 2006
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    Western South Dakota
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by showjumpers66 View Post
    We have had some come to the stallion test who were herd stallions and the situation was very tough for them. None were used to being stalled and never settled. Both were much more horse aggressive than the other stallions. I am sure that the owners had no problems schooling these stallions at home, but I don't see how they could ever be competition horses when managed in this fashion. Ultimately, we are breeding for competition horses and not mustangs.
    I think it is important that the stallion be a riding horse first, before they are used for any kind of breeding. Lion King was used only for collection on a dummy first as a "beginner" stallion. Then as a mature horse, with many shows under his belt, we did some in-hand live cover with him.

    Only when we were sure he would be good with the mares was he introduced to group turnout with mares. He does not, however, live year round with the mares and he isn't turned out with mares and foals. We feel that mares with foals are too risky to the stallion as they can be overly protective. Many people run stallions with mares and foals with no problems, though. He is after all a "competition" horse first and we do try to protect him. The majority of the time he is in the barn and has "ordinary" turnout.

    Lion King is anything but aggressive. He can be hauled and stabled next to any horse. He doesn't even "visit". He is the quietest stallion I've ever been around in non breeding situations. He happens to be turned out with mares for breeding overnight DURING the show season. If we are going to a show, he gets loaded up and taken to the show. No muss, no fuss, because he KNOWS a show isn't a breeding situation.

    I think people get into trouble by letting a too young stallion grow up with mares and then start breeding them. That is all the colt knows when suddenly he is expected to become a well mannered riding horse.

    In our experience, live cover and pasture breeding stallions are no different and sometimes better than dummy collected stallions as far as manners. As long as the routine is ESTABLISHED in a way that is easy for the stallion to understand. They aren't stupid.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug. 26, 2006
    Location
    North Central Florida
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  10. #10
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    Jun. 7, 2002
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    Virginia
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by foxhavenfarm View Post
    Absolutely, take a look at our guy's page.
    You have a lot to be proud of there, foxhaven. Not only is he obviously a gentleman and an athlete, but he seems very, very happy with his situation as well.
    "Absent a correct diagnosis, medicine is poison, surgery is trauma and alternative therapy is witchcraft" A. Kent Allen
    http://www.etsy.com/shop/tailsofglory



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep. 28, 2006
    Location
    Grayson, KY
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    My guy! He lives out 24/7 with his 4 mares and is an actively competing eventer. He's as happy as a clam.

    Funny story... He's actually out with 4 mares and one of his foals (and a mini donkey). I took the foal's dam out to wean them and the foal immediately went to Trey and shadowed him and still is. They are too cute. It's like she knew that mom's gone so Dad would take care of her. LOL It's the easiest weaning I've ever had. Although now I'm afraid I'll have to wean her from Dad...
    There is no secret so close as that between a rider and his horse-Robert Smith Surtees
    Breeding TBs, Connemaras and TB/Conn crosses for eventing
    www.twistoffateeventing.com



  12. #12
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    May. 12, 2001
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    Kentucky bluegrass
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    The sire of my Connemara stallion was Big Bear's Special Order. His owner kept him on pasture with his mares all the time but rode him consistently and competed in endurance rides. I saw him both 'at home' with his mares and at competitions ... same horse no matter where he was or the circumstances.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug. 26, 2006
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    North Central Florida
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    Quote Originally Posted by JackieBlue View Post
    You have a lot to be proud of there, foxhaven. Not only is he obviously a gentleman and an athlete, but he seems very, very happy with his situation as well.
    Thank you! He truly is a special guy!

    Quote Originally Posted by twistoffate View Post
    Funny story... He's actually out with 4 mares and one of his foals (and a mini donkey). I took the foal's dam out to wean them and the foal immediately went to Trey and shadowed him and still is. They are too cute. It's like she knew that mom's gone so Dad would take care of her. LOL It's the easiest weaning I've ever had. Although now I'm afraid I'll have to wean her from Dad...
    LOL, we had that problem as well with last year's filly (having to wean her from dad). She LOVED her daddy and spent more time with him than with mom.



  14. #14
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    Dec. 27, 2006
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    Both stallions I have raised have been accustomed to being with and around mares. I think the easiest way to create a monster out of a stallion is to isolate him.

    With that being said, my stallions are also accustomed to being taken far away from their mares when it's time to work.

    One of my stallions I sold a few years ago. He was 11 years old at that time. I raised him from a yearling and he was my primary riding horse. He would take me anywhere - alone - without so much as calling to his "girlfriends." I was absolutely comfortable taking him down the road a few miles away from home. He was a great trail horse and I often had no one else to ride with. (Yes, I know that trail riding alone is not the safest - but I'm still here.)

    This "workmanlike" mindset I began instilling into him from the moment I first purchased him. I always made sure he was exposed to many different environments both with and without other horses. When the saddle was on it was time to work. I never gave him the chance to think otherwise.

    To put it simply - whenever possible I just treated him like a "regular" horse.

    I have done the same with my new colt and this system seems to be working well for him too. He can be pastured with mares or across the fence from mares. He can also be ridden with horses of any gender or alone. This is the way it has always been. This is his reality.
    We are all inclined to judge ourselves by our ideals; others, by their acts. ~Harold Nicolson



  15. #15
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    Oct. 27, 2010
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    Nevada
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    Quote Originally Posted by TaliaCristianna View Post
    Both stallions I have raised have been accustomed to being with and around mares. I think the easiest way to create a monster out of a stallion is to isolate him.

    With that being said, my stallions are also accustomed to being taken far away from their mares when it's time to work.

    One of my stallions I sold a few years ago. He was 11 years old at that time. I raised him from a yearling and he was my primary riding horse. He would take me anywhere - alone - without so much as calling to his "girlfriends." I was absolutely comfortable taking him down the road a few miles away from home. He was a great trail horse and I often had no one else to ride with. (Yes, I know that trail riding alone is not the safest - but I'm still here.)

    This "workmanlike" mindset I began instilling into him from the moment I first purchased him. I always made sure he was exposed to many different environments both with and without other horses. When the saddle was on it was time to work. I never gave him the chance to think otherwise.

    To put it simply - whenever possible I just treated him like a "regular" horse.

    I have done the same with my new colt and this system seems to be working well for him too. He can be pastured with mares or across the fence from mares. He can also be ridden with horses of any gender or alone. This is the way it has always been. This is his reality.
    This!! Most of my stallions have been under saddle before being bred. First breedings were in-hand. Stud behavior was allowed during breeding and at no other time/place. Later when turned out with mares they could do as they liked....and the first day was usually a bit more active...meeting and greeting everyone. Living with mares has been wonderful for the boys....they learn to behave around mares and foals and to know when a mare is actually receptive and when she's just being a flirt. They can ride in trailers with mares, pony mares (even ones in season), compete with mares in the cutting pen with them, ride in parades or on trails with mares... no problems. Being really well broke to ride first and knowing when/where breeding behavior is allowed are the two things I think helped immensley. Other than restrictions on stud behavior they are treated like any other horse.



  16. #16
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    Jan. 2, 2006
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    Colorado
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    Default

    I guess I would worry most about their physical safety. I wonder if you could even insure a competition horse as a breeding-in-the-herd stallion? Are there any upper level FEI type stallions that are also herd stallions? (I just can't imagine this scenario, whereas I can image a top Western stallion being a herd sire. hmmm)



  17. #17
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    Dec. 27, 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Molly Malone View Post
    I guess I would worry most about their physical safety. I wonder if you could even insure a competition horse as a breeding-in-the-herd stallion? Are there any upper level FEI type stallions that are also herd stallions? (I just can't imagine this scenario, whereas I can image a top Western stallion being a herd sire. hmmm)
    There is always inherent danger when breeding live cover. Whether in a herd environment or by hand-breeding. Most insurers do not ask the details of the breeding stallion's management. It's a yes or no question on the insurance application.

    Yes, if you suddenly turn a 10 year old stallion, who has never been close to a mare in his life, out into a herd he (or the mares) will likely get hurt.

    This can be avoided by conditioning the stallion to behave around mares early on. Often young colts are turned out with already pregnant broodmares. Those mares are amazing teachers.

    I do know of several high-end breeders that routinely keep their six-figure show stallions pastured with at least one mare. Many breeders believe the mental benefits of this far outweighs the risk. The stallion just lives a happier more natural life this way.
    We are all inclined to judge ourselves by our ideals; others, by their acts. ~Harold Nicolson



  18. #18
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    Oct. 4, 2003
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    Oklahoma
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    Agreed. No offense, y'all, but I just can not see that it is worth taking the risk. Maybe if you have a stallion who's value is minimal, but not for a $100,000 plus stallion. Please show me any horse that is competing successfully at the international level and is living out 24/7. This is not the way to manage their condition for upper level sport. Any horse, not just stallions.


    Quote Originally Posted by Molly Malone View Post
    I guess I would worry most about their physical safety. I wonder if you could even insure a competition horse as a breeding-in-the-herd stallion? Are there any upper level FEI type stallions that are also herd stallions? (I just can't imagine this scenario, whereas I can image a top Western stallion being a herd sire. hmmm)
    Silver Creek Farms - home of Apiro & Validation
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  19. #19
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    Oct. 27, 2010
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    Nevada
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    Quote Originally Posted by showjumpers66 View Post
    Agreed. No offense, y'all, but I just can not see that it is worth taking the risk. Maybe if you have a stallion who's value is minimal, but not for a $100,000 plus stallion. Please show me any horse that is competing successfully at the international level and is living out 24/7. This is not the way to manage their condition for upper level sport. Any horse, not just stallions.
    I know of a number of high level western event stallions (ones whose offspring have earned in the millions of dollars) who either were (now deceased) or are living with at least a small band of mares. These are stallions that have sold for way above $100K (in fact, several of them have foals that have sold in close to that price range). Most western events are not competed internationally (except perhaps reining now that it is FEI approved)....but domestic competition in cutting for instance pays out more money than the Triple Crown of TB racing....and many do compete between the US and Canada while some are making trips to S. America and Europe...so I suppose this would be international although the events themselves are mostly national/regional. Many more are living with just one favored mare... and it does make a huge difference in them mentally. With plenty of room and the right stallion, there's no reason a stallion cannot live with his mares IF he's been properly trained/taught about behavior around mares to begin with. I introduce young stallions to a herd of bred mares when they are two or three....and he learns lessons that will remain with him for life. There is always some risk to this but so far I've never had a stallion collect more than a few bite marks and a loosened tooth from this (over 30 years of horses). Sure makes them easier to handle for live-cover breeding too as they are very aware of mares receptivity and her ability to say "NO" in a way that he respects.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct. 4, 2003
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    But, were these stallions living out while they were compaigned? Or after they retired? Did they compete heavily or just go to the occassional weekend event? Keep in mind that many western horses are retired from competition by the time sporthorses are really getting started.

    I know a lot of folks who have really top notch stock horses that live out but they also spend a huge amount of time tied to a fence or trailer. This is a whole different world than a horse that may need to live on a winter circuit for 3 months and compete 3 out of 4 weeks.

    Being from Oklahoma, I know quite a few of the cutting and reining trainers and I don't know any who pasture their stallions with the mares and leave them out 24/7 while they are also being competed. Of course, once they are retired, it may be another story. Do you have an example?

    I am not trying to be argumentative, but this is one point of view that I will never agree with and it is from first hand experience and knowledge gained from managing many, many SPORTHORSE stallions. If you have a high quality stallion that is slated for upper level sport, please don't turn him out with a herd of mares or let him live out 24/7. Put him in the hands of a respected trainer and give him a job. If he is having stallion related behavioral issues, geld him.
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