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Mares or geldings?

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  • #41
    It seems as if the only mares I've really gotten along with were the super hot ones that no one else liked. Two stand out in my mind that were exceptional. One was a show horse that just about breathed fire, and was uber sensitive to everything. I was working for a breeder at the time and she told me that if I didn't get along with that mare, it was okay because no one got along with her. She and I clicked instantly and she was always my favorite horse to ride. The other mare was a rescue that a woman brought to me to start under saddle. She had been a broodmare - I think. She was very hot, very alpha and very distrusting of people. She ended up being a beautiful horse to ride. She was the kind of horse that watches you wherever you go, and knows the sound of your truck when you pull up to the barn. She was one in a million and regret not taking her when the owner offered to give her to me.

    That being said, I have no preference. I wouldn't discount a horse based on gender. And I wouldn't look for a horse based on gender.


    • #42
      I prefer geldings. Mares in heat are a PIA. And kind of gross.


      • #43
        I adore my mare and have had her for 17 years. She is, however, probably a 7 on the "hotness" scale. That has proven difficult at times. Of course, I can take the same mare on a low key trailride and just tool around as calmly as can be.

        I love my gelding, too. He's more of a 5 on the hotness scale and it works for my personality better. I am more relaxed in dressage with him than I was with her.

        I honestly (for me) think it's an individual thing, not a gender thing.


        • #44
          Mares. Can't think of a gelding that I rode that I enjoyed. The ones of known were just too ho-hum for me. That said, I learned to ride on a appy pony who was also a red headed mare (and a hussy to boot), so perhaps my basis for normal is skewed!


          • #45
            Although I will ride either, I love my mares. I have been fortunate (or lucky ) that my mares - strong-willed tho' they can be at times - have all been really nice to have around. My present two are mother and daughter - and the daughter, although more stubborn than mum, is turning out to be quite similar.

            Saying that, there are a few mares that I wouldnt touch with a 10' barge pole. And my last good horse (before the two mares) was a lovely stong-willed/minded gelding.

            I think the anti-mare people dont want to deal with the moodiness that some mares can get when they are "in season". When one of my mares gets like that, I just imagine a really bad period cycle and reach for the heat-packs . One of my male friends will only ride mares and he cossets them something chronic when they are in season - if he could, he would get them to lie on the couch under a nice blanket with a soothing cup of tea .
            Still Working_on_it - one day I will get it!


            • #46
              Another one in the mare club, though my heart-horse pony that I own now is a gelding. He certainly ACTS like a mare though, I definitely had to earn his respect, he doesn't do anything unless it's his idea, and he isn't half as good for anyone else as he is for me. He's "my pony" and it shows. (sorry to get all Black Stallion on y'all!)

              I've ridden and bonded with some AWESOME mares in the past, though. I just love their sass and opinions! If I went looking for a second horse, I would definitely prefer a mare. I like a horse that thinks like me.

              But like other posters said, there are amazing geldings, mares, and stallions out there. More than anything it comes down to individual personality.
              Proud member of the "I'm In My 20's and Hope to Be a Good Rider Someday" clique



              • #47
                I've previously only had geldings, but I must say I'm really enjoying my mare. She's very kind and doesn't have obvious heats, thankfully. She gets moody and grumpy but she internalizes it more than she really acts out. She's just more emotional than the boys and overreacts when she's in heat, but that's limited to a couple times a year. The mares I've ridden really have a nice work ethic and really seem to care about doing a good job.
                Born under a rock and owned by beasts!


                • #48
                  Some of the mares I have ridden have been stereotypically moody and at certain points of their cycles they sometimes morphed into monsters. I don't blame them - hormones are powerful! The last horse I truly fell in love with before my own was a mare. When she was happy she was absolutely wonderful, but during and leading up to ovulation she actually became dangerous to the point that it did not feel safe or fair to ride her and those experiences left me with some fear issues I'm still dealing with two years later! Had she been mine I would have looked into ways to help her through it and perhaps it could have been improved. Of course most mares are not so extreme but I did not want to take the risk when buying my own horse. So now I have a gelding whose drama comes only from his own wild imagination rather than hormones. I am not opposed to buying a mare but I would first have to know her through a full season to feel comfortable with it after my experience with that mare.


                  • #49
                    I've owned both and loved them all. The mare's personality variations just made them that much more interesting, and I found them to be more affectionate.

                    Among other people's horses, I get along better with mares.
                    The inherent vice of Capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings. The inherent virtue of Socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.
                    Winston Churchill


                    • #50
                      I'm a mare person, definitely. I currently have an extremely opinionated chestnut pony mare (The $700 Pony lol) and I couldn't be happier. I'm a fairly opinionated "chestnut pony mare" myself so we have our moments but she is amazing. She was very aloof and standoffish for about a year but now she's an in your pocket love bug if she decided that a person is worth it. She adores my SO. I wouldn't turn down a REALLY nice gelding, but I do truly prefer mares.


                      • #51
                        I was always a dark bay, minimal white, gelding person.

                        And now I have a chestnut with lots of chrome mare.

                        I got her and she was very distrustful and kinda a nut - but she has always been amazing for me, even though nobody else ever got along with her - including multiple local pros.

                        I can take her anywhere, no spook, great mind, willing to please, can't even tell usually when she is in heat. I am breeding her this year because I am laid up after some brain surgery and I am secretly hoping for a filly.

                        What has happened to me?

                        Oh, and I have a 1 year old TB filly too. LOL


                        • #52
                          I am much more likely to get along with a gelding than a mare, so I generally prefer them. I can and do like SOME mares, but but for some reason or another, we're also more likely to clash.

                          Oddly this parallels my relationships with people, too.

                          It greatly helps if the mare is one of those who isn't remotely "marish". I have a hard enough time dealing with my own hormones, I don't need to deal with theirs too. XD


                          • #53
                            Filly or mare any day over a gelding.......have owned 8 mares and 2 geldings.....

                            I did not feel a connection with the geldings....and with the mares I did......and I'm the type of person that HAS to have a connection.

                            My pet peeve is when people so OH no not a mare, or she's marish...etc..... I just don't get it..... so it's a mare and there may be issues but so what? in my opinion.... I'd rather have some personality than not...........

                            We are all different but for me I'd never buy another gelding......



                            • #54
                              I am a mare person too. I also prefer my other pets to be female, especially the dogs.

                              I agree with mares taking a while to trust, and then they give their whole heart.

                              Both of my mares are red heads too. :0)


                              • #55
                                I love mares. For whatever reason, I just seem to get along with them better. I like that they tend to be a little feisty and generally have lots of personality.

                                I never seem to "click" with geldings the same way I do with mares.


                                • #56
                                  I own mares, geldings and a stallion. I actually like the stallion the best because he is such a fun ride. I do prefer the mares as performance horses more than the geldings. I think there is a little bit more flair with a breeding animal.

                                  That being said, I could sell geldings until the cows come home. I've met many, many prospective buyers who won't even consider a mare. I figure it's there loss.
                                  Where Fjeral Norwegian Fjords Rule


                                  • #57
                                    Originally posted by IronwoodFarm View Post
                                    I own mares, geldings and a stallion. I actually like the stallion the best because he is such a fun ride. I do prefer the mares as performance horses more than the geldings. I think there is a little bit more flair with a breeding animal.

                                    That being said, I could sell geldings until the cows come home. I've met many, many prospective buyers who won't even consider a mare. I figure it's there loss.
                                    Here you can't hardly give a mare away as a riding horse, unless she is already performing well and winning, as arena or show horses.
                                    For the run of the mill horse buyer, both mare and gelding being the same otherwise, practically all geldings will sell much faster than mares and at considerably higher prices.
                                    Doesn't make much sense, but the customer votes with their money.

                                    I think that, as the horse market is changing more to weekend riders and competitors, mares are becoming more accepted.
                                    At the catalog horse sales, the average of geldings is still considerably higher than mares.


                                    • #58
                                      I prefer mares, I find they have more 'personality' especially under saddle, that's not to say there aren't geldings like that, I've ridden a few like this
                                      I find mares to be more challenging and I feel that much more satisfaction when we connect


                                      • #59
                                        I prefer mares but my current heart horse is a gelding. An OTTB, Storm Cat bred gelding...I tend to like my horses opinionated.

                                        What I want is a good, big dose of personality, opinion and brightness in a horse, and I find that more often in mares than geldings. That personality seems to be in a horse that WANTS to help you, will save your bacon if you get into a bad spot. My two favorite activities, eventing (it's been a long time and I don't know if I'll ever do it again) and working cattle demand a horse that not only knows what you are trying to get done, but wants to help you do it.
                                        I suppose I'd also like a mule's personality, or a stallion's, but I have no plans to have either.

                                        I'm in ranch country, too. For the most part, people take geldings when they're headed off for day work (being paid to help someone work cattle, move, brand, etc). But there are a few who have a mare. If you have a mare, she ought not to be currently in heat, and you will have to be able to toss her in the stock trailer with unfamiliar horses. I have two mares that are OK with that, one who isn't. I've seen geldings that you couldn't do that with. But I've also met a mare or two that could do it.

                                        And around here, if you go to a ranch horse sale, you'll find probably 80% geldings. The Red Bluff and Klamath sales (for bulls and horses) catalog only geldings. But if you find a mare at a ranch horse sale, she's probably pretty useful, because there are SO many outfits that are geldings only.


                                        • #60
                                          Oh, and as an aside...there are some good ranch horse breeding programs who make sure to ride the mares before they put them into the broodmare herd. Moody, cranky, can't-ride-when-she's-in-heat mares don't go into the breeding program. Trainable, athletic, sound and cowy, you have to have in mama as well as daddy.
                                          You have two ways of knowing a mare has the probability of producing a trainable, athletic, sound baby- ride her, or ride 3 of her colts. Lots faster to ride the mare when she's 3, than find out when she's 10 that her colts are not what you want to produce.