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Can you breed a small mare and get a nice sized horse?

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  • Can you breed a small mare and get a nice sized horse?

    I have a lovely TB mare that is small (15.1) and compact - perfect for pony breeding which is why I got her. A friend recently inquired about possibly leasing her to breed to something larger - e.g a warmblood or even TB to get a horse instead of a pony - she asked how big a stallion she should look for - she's not a huge person - would want something around 16H - I had to admit I wasn't sure what to tell her as I hadn't considered such a thing so for those of you with smaller mares or lots more knowledge than me -- what sort of height should I be looking for in a stallion - obviously I don't want a just over large pony or a too small horse. Are there any dangers with a too large foal if stallion is really large or does mother nature keep an eye on these things - currently she throws a nice large pony when crossed with a small pony stallion

    Thanks for any help

  • #2
    My mom has a mare that is the same size and her sire was 16.1 & dam was 15.2. We've bred her to 17 & 17.2 hands with foals that are maturing out to be in the 15.3-16.2 range. Her oldest is just 3 but the youngest will probably push past 16.1.

    *knocking wood* Foalings are attended, no complications but the possibility exists. Fortunately, she tends to go around 330 days, so the foals are good sized but not huge. This year's colt has never been able to scoot under her belly but he is all legs.

    The temptation to breed for a pony is _very very_ large but we keep going with horse stallions as the quandry of what to do with the pony exists...
    Watermark Farm
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    • #3
      We have bred Ironman to a number of smaller mares, 15 h to 15.1 2, and usually get 16 to 16.1 hands, but then he throws size in general-

      Nancy
      Home of Ironman: GOV, BWP, RPSI, CSHA, AWR, ISR Oldenburg, CWHBA, CSHA, CS, and PHR.
      www.ironmanonline.com

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      • #4
        maybe!
        When we had Boomer (he was 16.1H o/o a 16.1H dam and 16.3H sire/grandsire) he was bred to 3 mares that were 15.1H: one filly is looking like she will mature at 15.2H and the 2 colts will be about 16.2H. He was also bred to a fourth short mare but that MO has not kept in touch/I have no idea the size of that one (now a yearling).
        Providence Farm
        http://providencefarmpintos.blogspot.com/

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        • #5
          We have a small TB mare. Bred her to a 16.3 stallion, as a yearling filly was 15.2 and string tests to 16.2. Her colt this year by a 17hh stallion also looks to go way past her. Both stallions are known to add height. I would not have bred her as a maiden to the larger stallions. Passing the shoulders, have been real work for her and we had to assist this year.
          Epona Farm
          Irish Draughts and Irish Draught Sport horses

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          • #6
            Bred a 15.1 quarter horse clyde cross to Daimler a holsteiner (16.2) ..........the filly is now 3 and is 16 hands........thinking she might finish 16.1.

            Dalemma

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            • #7
              I've heard the problem with big studs and small mares is usually the stallions penis is too big. However if you're AI, the mares body won't produce a foal she can't carry. Although I wouldn't breed a pony mare to a Clyde or anything I don't see a problem with big stallions and smaller mares.

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              • #8
                Breeding a small horse to a large horse does not make a medium sized horse. As a basic rule of thumb, you have a 50% chance of getting the dam's size (within 1 to 2 inches) and a 50% chance of getting the sire's size (within 1 to 2 inches). To make this a bit unpredictable, some horses genetically throw a size that they are not. My suggestion would be to go with a stallion that consistently produces offspring who mature at height that you are wanting.

                For example, my friend bred her 15.2 h TB to two different 17.0 h stallions. The first foal matured to 16.3 h (basically the height of the sire) and the second foal matured to 15.1 h (basically the height of the mare).

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                • #9
                  I have personally not seen a correlation to horse size with penis size. There are ponies with huge penises and big horse with little penises.

                  Originally posted by ThreeBarPocoGal View Post
                  I've heard the problem with big studs and small mares is usually the stallions penis is too big. However if you're AI, the mares body won't produce a foal she can't carry. Although I wouldn't breed a pony mare to a Clyde or anything I don't see a problem with big stallions and smaller mares.

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                  • #10
                    I agree with the penis issue.

                    I have a small TB mare and her offspring were all over the board. Your friend should decide that she could be happy with a foal that matures at 15 hands BEFORE breeding. Basically, you just won't know what you will get until it is grown. What is the size in the mare's pedigree?
                    Chris
                    Ladybug Hill--Hunters and Ponies
                    WWSD? (what would Suerte do?)

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                    • #11
                      Yup. Do the punnet square. Size is genetic, not quantitative.

                      My stallion has 16h relatives close up. He is 14.3. Out of the same 16h mare he's thrown 2 16h'ers, and a 14.2. Haven't heard where #4 is, but he was well on his way to 16h last year as a 2yo.

                      Naturally, the 14.2 was for the tall, leggy rider.

                      Some stallions do stamp their size more predictably.

                      You CAN have trouble (foaling) breeding a small mare to a big stallion--but it's far more about bone than actual 'height.' Some not-huge stallions throw very large boned foals, and you *would* want to watch out for that, IMO.
                      InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs
                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                      Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)

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                      • #12
                        I bred a 14.3H Anglo Arabian mare to a 17.2H TB (Alota Gator Bait), and got a 16.3H Anglo Arabian gelding.
                        The Inverted Y
                        Thoroughbred and Anglo Arabian Sporthorses
                        2005 and 2007 USEF Breeder of the Year.
                        www.allanglos.net

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                        • #13
                          I think speaking with the stallion(s) owner to see what the stallion "typically" throws from a range of mares is a good place to start.

                          With that being said, at times it's a crap shoot. I have put on the ground 3 full siblings. Sire is maybe 16.1 my mare is 15.2 to 15.3. First baby is 15.2, second (and still growing) is 16.3 and her third, who turned 3 this summer is 16.2 already.

                          I have two WB mares who are 15.1. My dutch stallion is 17 hands and we have never had an issue with cover and foaling out. He throws SIZE and nearly all of his babies, no matter what the size of the mare, get at or near 17 hands and few have gotten over 17 hands. I have to foals who are out of my 18 hand Irish mare who will no doubt make 18 hands themselves.

                          I think too that she should look/think about far more then just how big the potential foal may be.

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                          • #14
                            I bred a 15.2h Han/Arab mare two years in a row to Feiner Stern, who was 17h. I sold the first filly at age 2 and am not sure how tall she ended up, but I still have the second filly. We haven't put a stick on her but she is somewhere between 16h and 16.1h at age 7.

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                            • #15
                              I have a TB mare who is between 15.1 and 15.2. I bred her to a 16.1 Hanoverian stallion, and the resulting offspring, a mare I still have who is 9 this year, is 16.1.
                              Mystic Owl Sporthorses
                              www.mysticowlsporthorses.com

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                              • #16
                                I think it is not so much the size of the stallion as it is what he produces. Choose a stallion that you know will produce height since a 16.1hh stallion that consistently produces height is a better choice than a 17hh that may or may not. Your mare contributes too so it also depends on the size of horses in her pedigree. Either way, there are no guarantees in breeding for a larger (or smaller) horse.

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                                • #17
                                  My mare is about 15.2h, and I bred her to a 16.1h Lusitano stallion who is known to sire babies that mature 16h to 16.2h. The resulting filly is only 5 months, but I am positive she is going to be taller than her mother, probably 16.1h or so.

                                  My mare is big-boned and wide through the hips, and this was not her first foal. She had no issues whatsoever delivering the filly, but I was present just in case. Had my mare been delicate, I would have been more concerned about breeding to something larger.

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                                  • #18
                                    It's always hard to predict size, I agree. We have had some strange cases ourselves - for example, a 16.1h mare and 16.2h stallion and the filly is 14.3 at 2 years. Then a 15.2h mare and 16.3h stallion and resulting filly born same year as the previously mentioned one, is 16h+ at 2 years. Go figure. We all do our best to make an educated guess, but it still can be a crapshoot!
                                    Signature Sporthorses
                                    www.signaturesporthorses.com

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                                    • #19
                                      Our best broodmare of all time, Risque', was only 15.2 but she never produced anything under 16 hands - and most were 17+! - from 3 different stallions (for a dozen foals). Her dam was 16.1 and her sire 16.2.

                                      Welt Marke is only 16.1 (sire 16.3; dam 17.2) yet all of the babies we can track are 17 hands or over.

                                      Dr. Roland Ramsauer always said you have to look back 3 generations when looking at size and we found this to hold true in over 20 years of breeding.
                                      Pat Belskie - ASHEMONT Farm

                                      PnP Distributors - KUTZMANN Carriages
                                      Ashemont2@gmail.com

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                                      • #20
                                        I agree with Pat about looking at the size in her pedigree. My competition mare, 16.1 produced a 17.1.1/4 gelding in Germany, don't know the sizes of the 2 fillies she had, but I have a daughter who is 16.2 (sire is 17.0).

                                        I have another mare who is 16.0, her sister is maybe a tad smaller and a full brother is 17.3, everything my mare produces is very tall, again genetics plays a much bigger part in this and yes, most times it is a crap shoot no matter what you plan.

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