Breeding a 3 year old mare?
Are you for or against it? Pros/cons? Personal experiences?
Absolutely against it. Horses aren't done growing until they are 5, sometimes 6.
People that breed 3 year olds are completely irresponsible.
I've bred a two year old mare and she had her baby just fine and grew to the height she was supposed to be. I didn't know anything then or I probably wouldn't have bred her, but there were no negative results.
My mare who is due to foal in April is a coming 4 year old. She was bred at three of course and isn't having any trouble at all, other than requiring more food to keep her in the same shape once she entered the last trimester.
I personally don't think its bad at all breeding a three year old as long as they are a decent size. I've heard breeding a four year old is better for the mare however, because it allows her to finish growing herself without the added strain of carrying a foal.
No! absolutely against it...A 3 year old isn't even done growing yet. She's still a baby in my mind..She's not physically or mentally read to breed..It is a very irresponsible and selfish thing to do. Think about the mare's well being and not just a want to have a foal..
Thanks for the opinions everyone. Of course the mare would really be 4 when she foals.It depends on the individual mare I'm sure...mentally and physically. I've know several people that breed at 2 or 3 for foaling at 3 or 4. I just wanted to see how many people are comfortable with it...and more specifically if anyone has had an experience where breeding a younger mare turned out badly as a result of the age?
And the fact that you say "I probably wouldn't have bred her" just makes me cringe.
What stallion owner in their right mind would ever breed a 2 year old. That's backyard breeding right there.
And not only that, your mare was bred as a 3 year old. And I've seen in another thread that you are going to breed your mare to another stallion as a 4 year old too? So there's going to be a baby on the ground, sucking this young mare dry, and your going to re-breed her?
Breeding a horse this young is like a 13 year old getting pregnant and having the baby.
Besides the physical aspect, a 3 year old, even a 4 year old is still and sometimes 5 year old are just too young mentally to care for a foal. So your taking an even bigger chance on having the mare not knowing how to properly care for the foal and the foal becoming an orphan.
Well, how it was explained to me by my vet is that the pregnancy doesn't really affect the mare until the last trimester and the mare is a year older by the time she drops her foal. He also said that as long as you feed one well, it shouldn't prevent them from growing normally and I can see how it wouldn't because of my previous mare being bred early and growing out normally. Good groceries go a long way!
I've also seen horses who were bred as two/three year olds who weren't fed anything extra and looked aweful, but it depends on the circumstances.
Yes, it completely depends on their care. Your mare looks like she's very well taken care of. But I feel if your going to breed a mare, you should be responsible and wait until the horse is ready, both physically and mentally. Breeding young horses to me, seems like owners are just trying to make money because they have a mare and the stud fee is cheap.
Most 3 and 4 year olds haven't even hit the show ring yet. Therefore what have they proven themselves to be good at? Horses that breed should prove themselves before hitting the breeding shed, so to speak.
Well as I was very nieve at the time, I didn't really know what I was doing with the first mare. The stallion owner also was a liar and my foal almost didn't get registered, so he definitely wouldn't have given me any advice if it meant he wouldn't have money put in his pocket.
The second was checked out by my vet and given the ok to breed. Also, unless the foal is drawing the mare down horribly, I don't see why you wouldn't want to rebreed a mare if she checks out clean by the vet. I understand that a lot of the nutrition is going to the foal as well, but if the mare was barely getting any, she would be a bag of bones or would show some other form of not being healthy, which mine doesn't. I'm not wanting to get in a debate, I'm just stating my opinion on what I've heard and seen.
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