I originally posted this in the Off Course Forum but people thought I should post it here.
I have recently been offered a stallion that is a Belgian Warmblood. He is a pretty reasonable guy but hasn't been ridden in 4 years. He was schooling 3'6" and doing second level dressage prior to that but his owner broke her back (not related to him) and just stopped with him. He has been hanging out in the field breeding and he has some pretty nice babies on the ground and I have been looking for a project horse for myself. I have finally made the decision that my current mount is not going to be what I need him to be and I don't think it is fair for me to push him to try to be something he is not.
This guy is more what I'm looking for and I am not sure I am ready to cut him at this time. He hasn't been doing much but hanging out in the field with his mare for the past 4 years but I have been over to her house and done ground work with him and he seems to want to work.
What is everyone's thoughts on if you can put a stallion back to work after this long of a time off and he be like he was (he was breeding when he was in work back then too). I have a small breeding operation and this guy has not been getting many outside mares, but his babies are sought after locally. I do plank on breeding my warmblood mare to him as soon as she cycles again.
I know several SOs now who have done just that. They either gave the stallion time off for some heavier breeding, or he came into their hands similarly to what you would be doing, and just put him back to work.
______________________________ The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET
He is a pretty good guy. He is settling in and getting used to the routine at my place. I do want to breed him to my warmblood broodmare as soon as she is ready for him She foaled in late March. I think he will give her size as she is on the smaller size even though she has big genes. I will not be advertising him as a breeding stallion but the person who had him will be directing anyone inquiring to me. That being said I really think he will be happier with a job rather than just sitting in the field. I'm going to give him some time to settle and see how it goes. I am planning on starting over with him and seeing what he remembers.
I put my Guaranteed Gold stallion back to work after being off for 10 years. I wanted to get some updated pictures and footage of him being ridden more like a hunter than an eventer and thats what we accomplished.
He was horribly unfit and overweight as well and 1 turn around the arena had him huffing and puffing but the lady I had him with took it slowly with him and in 6-7 weeks, he could start to self carry himself once again, was fit enough to jump and was looking fabulous. According to her, he hadnt forgotten a thing. There were no hysterics, no bucking or rearing - nada. She let him go a few turns on the lunge line with tack on, had someone hold him when she got on, she let him go and they walked off like he had been ridden yesterday
I truly believe its in our minds - and not theirs - how long its been since they were last ridden. I dont believe they have any concept of time like we do. They understand what is expected of them under saddle and thats it
My stallion was (and still is) a breeding stallion - live cover and AI - and it didnt make any difference with him at all being ridden again
Agreed, not a problem at all. I've just put one of my stallions back to work, he's been just a breeding stallion since 2008. Obviously fitness is a concern, but he's doing great, and his mind is just as wonderful as it was back then Good luck!!