Issue with gelding and seperation from mares

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Issue with gelding and seperation from mares

This is a discussion on Issue with gelding and seperation from mares within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Do geldings still know when a mare is on heat
  • Will a gelding forget about a mare with seperation

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    08-16-2012, 10:54 PM
Issue with gelding and seperation from mares


I bought a 9 yr old gelding on July 23. He was pastured with two geldings for two weeks. He was getting picked on a alot (bit marks and such) so I moved him in with 4 mares. On Tuesday, August 7 (after spending just 2 days with the mares) I pulled him from the herd to ride. Tied him in the barn for grooming and saddling. He was pawing kicking and pacing. After about 5 minutes of this he ended up rearing, hitting his head, and getting stiches. Im guessing he was upset cause none of the girls were with him. By Thursday he starting breaking out in hives (thinking allergic reation to the antibiotics) he is still in with the mares. By Saturday the hives covered his body a LOT. Still with the mares. Vet gave recovery shot. By Sunday, hives were still bad and so the vet gave him steriods for a few days. Still with the mares. By Tuesday, August 14 the hives were gone. Still with the mares. Now its been just over a week, tried to ride and was pretty naughty and anxious to get home so we decided he need to move out from the mares. Now the geldings he was patured with first are gone so he went to his own pasture. After a day he started to settle down, but his primary focus is still "where are the girls?" Today, we brought one of the geldings back to try and get him focused on him instead of the mares. We turned the mares out into their normal large pasture. (We kept them closer for the first few days so that they were always visable.) When he saw them take off, he started running the fence line.... again. Didn't even care that the other gelding was there with him. Im just looking for some feedback on how long this might last. It's total stressing me out!! Thank you!!!
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    08-16-2012, 11:06 PM
IMO, two weeks isn't nearly enough time to settle herd dynamics. You didn't really give him a chance with the first herd. He's since had to adjust twice more. I've seen some horses not truly settle for 6 months, maybe more. Give him a chance. A few scrapes and bites never killed a horse and at least he wasn't bored. It's all part of heirarchy establishment.
smrobs likes this.
    08-16-2012, 11:15 PM
Thank you for this. Everyone keeps telling me to give him time. Trust me, I regret moving him from the geldings the first time. He was doing so good with everything during that time. I'm kicking myself profusly and just trying to get things back to the way they were before I moved him. 6 months... I hope it doesnt take him that long to get over the mares. I'm affraid he is going to hurt himself. Today he came running down the hill and slide right thru the electric rope fence (it had rained so there was no stopping).
    08-16-2012, 11:26 PM
Green Broke
Worked for a guy who always said that the best way to ruin a gelding was to run him with mares.

The time period you left him the other geldings doesn't sound like enough time to establish a pecking order. But the time period varies and some horses are just aggressive, especially during feeding time.

Another option is to maybe pair him with one gelding? I don't think he should be with mares. Some geldings do fine with it but others turn into idiots.
Cherie likes this.
    08-16-2012, 11:27 PM
Wow he is wound up tight for the ladies!!!LOL I wish I had a solution,for you I have two geldings that have been together for 10 years that are like that for each other, they share a stall(a really really big one) but they still do their work and stand for the farriar, I think maybe you should pull him out everyday and make him do a "job" whatever it is, stand tied start out 10-15 min, then after a couple of day increase a little, try distracting him with moving his feet, if he wont stay tied, that is a real tough one , it doesnt sound like it but that is a very difficult one, because the problem has to do with "off" time not "work" time. I hope someone on here is more help than I am!!! I guess all I really can offer is moral support!!
jenwilson likes this.
    08-16-2012, 11:39 PM
@cowchick77 - I would have pulled him out of the mare heard after the first incident with the stiches, but since he was hurt I wanted him to remain calm and new moving him solo was not going to be the answer. Then when the hives came I thought the same thing. Was reading that stress can cause hives. There were supper bad. I'd post picks but don't know how. He clicked with one of the mares right away. Inseperable. Sickening really. This mare hardly ever shows heat but she did with my gelding out there. Asked pervious owner to buy him back but she said no. I feel like I have ruined him...
    08-17-2012, 12:09 AM
Mares make geldings do stupid things. Keep him away from girls and he will forget in time.
Cherie likes this.
    08-17-2012, 12:14 AM
Green Broke
You didn't ruin him :)
You just need to find a situation/pasture mate where he doesn't get the crap beat out of him yet not stressed when taken away. Most of that is learned(herd bound) but it can be multiplied by being in with the mares, from what I have learned.
Some of it can be helped with training, getting him away from the mares will help greatly. The personality of the horse makes a difference too. Some never seem to mind being by themselves while others are very insecure by themselves.
Cherie likes this.
    08-17-2012, 11:15 AM
You set him up to fail right out of the gate by turning him out with only 2 other horses that already are an established herd. He had no one to pair up with. Turn out the new horse with only one other horse or 3+.
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    08-17-2012, 08:19 PM
Why I don't like geldings I have too many mares. :( everyone I've had come to the ranch had been like this but some stall time always works. Put him in a stall excersize him everyday and give him a chance to bond with you instead of any other horses. He also needs to be able to be secure by him self which it sounds like he has a problem with.. Good luck :) I hope it helps
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