Hand Breeding Versus Pasture
I was talking to my mom and she thinks Hand Breeding is better than Pasture breeding because the mare/stallion is less likely to get dinged up. I think pasture breeding is more appropriate because the mare gets to breed when she's ready versus just having her cross tied and hobbled where she has lesser of a choice. What do you guys think of the two? Or do you prefer having a mare artificially inseminated?
personally for me, I will not do live cover or pasture breeding with my stallion. He is AI only, as he is going to be my competition horse and I do not want him to get hurt. There are a multitude of reasons for me not wanting to do either, but that is the main reason I choose AI. Safer for both mare and stallion.
I agree with your mum abby, i also would prefer hand breeding. Paddock breeding can get quite messy. Also what cheekyhorse said, most competing stallions are switching to AI. It insures there safty. :)
I MUCH prefer Hand Breeding than Pasture Breeding. There is NO control with Pasture breeding, plus unless you have 24/7 watch, you really do not know when your mare was covered, and when she should be due. With a well run breeding program, dates are very important. I couldn't imagine not having a clue as to when my mares were due. Exposed from this date to this date is not enough. I need to know, "She is due on THIS day." Whether or not she foals on that date, which they usually don't, but it gives you a better idea of when to set up camp for FW.
As for control, there are too many "what ifs" to make me want to try it. What if she kicks him? If my stallion is worthy to breed, and people would want to breed thier mares to him, why am I going to risk one mare kicking him. What if he hurts her? What one of them is run through a fence or they hit a slick spot and get hurt in some fasion? What if he doesn't cover her in the time I have them together? What if what if what if?
What if I want to start hand breeding, and all he knows is pasture breeding? There is a BIG chance you will have no manners, no respect, no control, and things have a high probability of not going to go as smoothly.
When doing live cover, you need to be responsible and aware of your mare's readiness. It all comes down to your knowledge and experience. You have to take the time to tease, and watch, and KNOW the signs.
Pasture breeding is very outdated, and most people that do it, do not have the experience to safely Hand breed.
AI is best in many situations, but with some breeds/stallions, it is not applicable. Thoroughbreds have to have live cover. And in some cases, stallions cannot be collected. Our older stallion is like that. He is 28, and cannot be collected.
In his case, he could never be pasture bred either. I would never risk him. I doubt I would ever risk intentional pasture breeding.
We do both Hand Breeding and AI.
We do hand breeding and pasture breeding.
We were very picky when buying a stallion . We wanted to make sure that we had a stud that was gentle with our mares. He is a real gentleman. We are also using him only has a ranch/rope horse so minor scratches is not a big deal and won't affect is carrer. And I watch them very carefully and only let the stub breed them for 3 days so I know our due dates within 3 days. The only time that I don't is first time breeder as I usually give them a bit more time with the stud, and my Kita girl as she is a bit of a hard catcher.
We do however hand breed out rougher mares. We currently don't own any right now, so this year is all pasture breeding.
I do agree with Abby, I like it to be the mares choice, and more of a natural setting.
However I do not disagree with handbreeding or AI and if I were showing my stallion in something other then roping I would most definatly AI to eliminate injury.
I would never do pasture breeding. The barn I board at, they just put the stallion and mare in the same pasture and when it came time for labor, the mare colicked, and got the baby twisted around with her intestines and pushed her intestines out instead of a baby. Hand-breeding is more precise and you can pretty much guarantee that your mare will be pregnant.
I have just started breeding my stud last year, but will do hand breeding with any outside mares. We did a combo with our mare...we started out hand breeding, and she was taking it very awkwardly, despite our stud's best and most polite efforts. They get along and were courting well, so we made the decision to turn them out together for a couple of hours. They managed much better on their own. The next day, we tried hand breeding again, with the same result, so again turned them out together, this time leaving them in for about three days together until she was no longer showing signs of heat. That was not my preference, but it ended up working best.
As I compete my stallion, I will 100% be hand breeding outside mares, and I have actually been looking into AI, but know nothing of the finer details of that method yet...that is what I would like to end up doing though.
Hand Breeding. Safer and more reliable.
i have seen Mr Bailey do both...with his mares that he has bred plenty, he my pasture breed, with mares he doesnt know anything about he hand breeds...we dont do any AI....nothin against it just havent ever tried it
i think with either you can be successful....its just a preference
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