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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2012
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    Default Breeding Contracts

    From a breeders perspective, I am wondering what people hesitate over in a breeding contract? What is the deciding factor in choosing a stallion? Does the contract have as much to do with the stallion itself?
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 3, 2008
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    25

    Default

    As a person who breeds one mare/year and keeps the babies for herself . . . aka amateur.

    I look for an up to date website and want to see clear conformation shots as well as good videos of the stallions. I would like to see at least w/t/c and jumping if that is what their bloodlines suggest they do.

    I was amazed at how many stallion owners don't even have those basic items.

    Once I have narrowed my search down by those criteria, for me it really hinges on reputation of the stallion owner and ease of contact with the stallion owner.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 30, 2005
    Location
    Northfield MN
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    Default

    I have changed my mind about using a stallion after reading the breeding contract, but I've never selected a stallion just because he had a good one.

    As a mare owner, I want a contract that indicates the stallion owner wants a foal on the ground as much as I do. I want reasonable availability for collection/shipping and fair fees. I also want the ability to substitute a mare should that become necessary.

    I lost my shirt once trying to breed to a stallion with very limited availability (not disclosed in the contract), very high fees, and shipped semen ranging from 10-30%. There was never paperwork included and the SO's response when I contacted her and asked for pre-shipping numbers on the last bad batch...."It looked fine when it left".

    I have also gotten a call from an SO, while my vet and I stood in the barn aisle waiting for FedEx, to tell me, "Oops, the equitainer is still here".


    There are too many SOs and managers willing to go above and beyond (IME Edgar and Barbara ) to take a chance on anyone who presents a one-sided contract. I'd rather take my chances on frozen from Europe.


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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 19, 2005
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    1,905

    Default

    I have thought twice about using a contract that required a fee 3x plus the worth of the equitainer if i was not returned or was damaged. I can see trying to discourage folks from keeping your equitainer in the middle of a busy breeding season but accidents do happen-- equitainers get lost/damaged shipping, etc and I was not sure (and did not want to find out) whether FedEx would compensate 3x the market value of the object damaged or lost. (Of course, solution is to use your own equitainer but it gives one pause about contract in general).

    Also did not have success with a MWF contract (plus required 24 hour prior notice to collect) and difficult mare (and it did not help they shipped once without semen.) So because of that I would never go w MWF contract again even though I know good repro vets should be able to work it.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 29, 2000
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    SE WI- Midwest
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    Default

    Very well said Tuckaway!

    I dont think for me the contract is the sticking point, because I guess I'm of the opinion that if I dont like something in it, I will approach the SO and discuss altering it to where we are both comfortable. If we can't come to an agreement, then there is a problem.



  6. #6
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    Mar. 11, 1999
    Location
    Clayton, CA USA
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    Default

    MWF collection schedule is a deal breaker for me, even if the SO says that they will try to do more. I love a couple of stallions I will never use because of that. High collection and shipping fees are another. I haven't ever had a requirement to pay a big container deposit, but when I see it, it gives me pause. Count me as another who won't contract with a stallion who has limited availability.
    Mystic Owl Sporthorses
    www.mysticowlsporthorses.com



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 11, 2009
    Posts
    488

    Default

    Agree with Tuckaway- contracts are not a deciding factor, but a contract will turn me away from a particular stallion. MWF for fresh is a no-go, and, personally, I will never ship fresh from Canada again (major problems last year). Also, cost of collection and shipping is a factor. And agree with above poster- Edgar and Barbara are both fantastic to work with.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct. 29, 2008
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    1,641

    Default

    I think a MWF collection schedule would give me pause. Plus strictures that the mare must be checked for pregnancy at 15, 28, 40 and 60 days. A lot of expense added there.
    And high collection fees - also a consideration.



  9. #9

    Default

    Agree with a few posters here.
    Show me you want a foal on the ground as much as I do and that your contract is not just there to cover your ass and get out of any responsibility.
    I have definitely eliminated stallions based on too restrictive contracts. Lot of stallions , its competitive out there.
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 24, 2005
    Location
    Fort Collins, Colorado
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    492

    Default

    I dislike contracts that are only good for one year. I bought a breeding and the stallion had dead semen when it arrived and came with no paperwork. The mare didn't get pregnant that year and I was out of luck and the stud fee.

    High collection costs discourage me, and ridiculous fees for using disposables (most of know what they cost....). Same stallion owner as above charged $60 or so for a disposable, which I could almost swallow, until it had a 1/2 inch thick layer of shipping labels on it and was one of the old original disposables that looked like it was from 1990. Of course, he required I mail it back so he could use it for the next guinea pig.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    May. 16, 2008
    Location
    Panama City, FL
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    Default

    I loose an equitainer or two every year and I don't charge a deposit mostly because it's a pain to return and most mare owners ar great about returning the containers, every now and then you may have to remind them to ask there vet about the container. I think all the ones I've not had returned were from other stallion owners.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun. 8, 2009
    Location
    Ontario
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    555

    Default

    Personally I like to narrow my choices down to a handful of stallions I really think will cross well with my mare(s). Then from there I check the contracts. A big deal breaker for me is high collection fees, no LFG and limited availability. I also feel much better with a 2+ yr contract should a mare be hard to settle and need another year for whatever the reason. I am a little gun shy with stallions from the US right now because of the CEM issues and importing… but I am breeding my mare to one of Edgars’ stallions and he has been SUPER (as usual!) and has gone above and beyond to make the process as smooth as possible. It does make the crazy gambol of importing worth the high risks! His contract also meets or exceeds my “wants” in a contract! 



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar. 28, 2006
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    Oregon
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    3,373

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by aquafarms View Post
    I loose an equitainer or two every year and I don't charge a deposit mostly because it's a pain to return and most mare owners ar great about returning the containers, every now and then you may have to remind them to ask there vet about the container. I think all the ones I've not had returned were from other stallion owners.
    I realized this year as I perused my stack of Equitainers, that at least two of them have disappeared in the last breeding season or two. Sigh..... No idea who might have forgotten to send them back. They are pretty much just gone forever.
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  14. #14
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    Apr. 28, 2009
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    Alberta's bread basket
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    Default

    I have never chosen a stallion based on contract, but I've decided against stallions based on really nit-picky contracts and lack of availability. I won't do fresh semen that doesn't have at least 2-year LFG. In my view, fresh semen is very time-sensitive and labor intensive. The timing for shipping has to be perfect or you lose a cycle. So, I figure, if I'm doing a risk with fresh chilled shipping, then I should have at least a couple years to get my living foal. Otherwise forget it, I'll just do frozen, which in a lot of circumstances, done correctly, can actually be cheaper and be a whole lot less stressful.

    The best contract I've ever signed was a 3-year LFG and so I'm a repeat customer (Canadian stallion station).

    I won't sign a contract unless the stallion owner has given me exact dates that the stallion isn't available due to showing - then I can decide if that matches with our schedule and go from there.

    With all the demands of the contract placed on fresh chilled, there is a lot going for the freedom of using frozen, espcially the freedom of scheduling/cycling the mare to suit me and the vet. But not all mares are suited for frozen.

    Shipping up from the United States to Canada can be a royal pain in the you-know-what, unless the SO tends to do it a lot - like Edgar of Rainbow, or Hilltop.

    For Canadians, a lot of stallions become non-usable, because the SO is not willing to become CEM-free certified or have their stallion collected at a CEM-free certified facility, so they lose my business. I'm willing to get all the permits and pay for the health certificates State-side, but it's amazing how many stallion owners would rather lose customers and possible repeat business year after year. It's the repeat business that really adds up to lost sales revenue.

    So, for those reasons, I tend to stick with stallions that are either in a CEM-free certified facility, or with stallions in Canada, or I go to Europe.
    http://www.mariposasporthorses.com/

    Practice! Patience! Persistence!



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2012
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    Barboursville, VA
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    Default

    It's great to read the responses and thank you for the input! We have tried to be as user friendly as possible without losing our shirts. I think when writing a contract one has to write it in a way that tries to eliminate abuse of time, vet costs and stallion health. Yet, one thing I will add is that I am always willing to work with mare owners within reason. So before you eliminate a stallion from your list of choices talk to the stallion owner. I have come across many stallion owners who are very willing to reach outside the boundaries of that contract to work with the mare owner.

    Best of luck this season to all you breeders out there!

    Cheers
    Hyperion Stud, LLC.
    Europe's Finest, Made in America
    WWW.HYPERIONSTUD.com
    Standing Elite and Approved Stallions



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov. 28, 2000
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    Ontario, Canada
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    Default

    As well as being a stallion owner, I am also a mare owner who has always bred to outside stallions, with sisters and daughters of my own horse.

    I agree with tucktaway and others who said that while the contract will not make me choose a particular stallion, it may and has made me change my mind.
    I hope that my contract is designed to protect both of us,stallion and mare owner, and is as simple and user-friendly as possible.

    One thing that I question is having to repay the booking fee.
    I just read a contract yesterday and while the LFG is for two years, if the mare does not conceive in this breeding season, another booking fee ($500!) must be paid for the subsequent season.

    I would think the booking fee, which is in reality a deposit on the total stud fee, is paid only once.
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  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb. 23, 1999
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    Cypress, near Houston, Texas
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    Default

    Ditto most of the above and would add that unless you are breeding to a TB stallion, there is absolutely no point or purpose of a booking fee.

    The booking fee was used to reserve a spot on a stallion's schedule when live cover is used. Reasons were that if using live cover, the stallion has only a limited number of mares that he can breed (no way to split doses, etc) and a stallion's "Book of mares" was usually limited to 40 per season.

    So, you paid up front to make sure your mare had a spot "in the book."

    But with fresh cooled (which can be split into multiple doses) and many many mares can be bred, there is no reason for a booking fee at all - much less an additional booking fee every year.

    So, I will not use a stallion whose owner requires additional fees the next year if the mare did not get pregnant.
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  18. #18
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    Apr. 28, 2009
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    And yet, I have NEVER seen a contract where there aren't booking fees required to fulfill the LFG.

    But I also agree - booking fees are literally a cheap stud fee and the SO's attempt to have the MO pay their expenses. If the LFG was not fulfilled, there should be no further fees required of the MO.
    http://www.mariposasporthorses.com/

    Practice! Patience! Persistence!


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  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb. 11, 2003
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    Lincoln, CA, USA
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    Well then you have not seen our breeding agreement. We use a booking fee when initially offering a discount and somebody can book and hold that discounted breeding fee of which the balance is then paid in full later in the year. The booking fee is just a part of the total breeding fee and more a down payment that guarantees the agreed upon discounted price than anything else. If the mare loses her foal or does not conceive we re-book without any additional charge or booking fee for the next spring.

    I find that it ads insult to injury when a mare owner pays for a breeding fee , vet etc. sometimes a hospital bill loses a foal and then has to pay me for part of the breeding fee again??? They pay the collection and shipping expense any time its shipped which is enough for me to make sure the initial goal is met. It is our and the mare owners goal to have a nice foal on the ground the year after the mare owner pays the breeding fee, not to cause more financial hardship on top of their bad luck if we can help it.
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  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb. 9, 2011
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    117

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Edgar View Post
    Well then you have not seen our breeding agreement. We use a booking fee when initially offering a discount and somebody can book and hold that discounted breeding fee of which the balance is then paid in full later in the year. The booking fee is just a part of the total breeding fee and more a down payment that guarantees the agreed upon discounted price than anything else. If the mare loses her foal or does not conceive we re-book without any additional charge or booking fee for the next spring.

    I find that it ads insult to injury when a mare owner pays for a breeding fee , vet etc. sometimes a hospital bill loses a foal and then has to pay me for part of the breeding fee again??? They pay the collection and shipping expense any time its shipped which is enough for me to make sure the initial goal is met. It is our and the mare owners goal to have a nice foal on the ground the year after the mare owner pays the breeding fee, not to cause more financial hardship on top of their bad luck if we can help it.
    THIS is why we want to breed to one of your stallions



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