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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I have my mare with her 9 months old. I can't separate them physically and I want to keep the foal so he will stay.

I trail ride with my mare 3 - 4 times a week and the foal goes with us being free (no rope or else). I thought about it and sounds like a good idea getting the foal to go places, exercise and learn from her mother (since she's not easily spooked). But I was told that 6 months was the time for them to separate, so I'm lost?

What do you do with the foals and how do you build independence?

The foal will go nuts if he doesn't see her mother for a while and she will lose her mind if the foal starts calling.

Sometimes during the rides the foal will go full speed and try to mount us lol. He bites my mare's ankle, tail and does a lot of funny things but I have to correct him all the time (my mare tolerates EVERYTHING and Idk if that's normal), he also asks me for pets when we stop. I do correct him all the way but until I can't ride him and he's getting bigger, I do think it's time to break them apart (?).

Help please!

Sky Head Horse Working animal Liver
 

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Best is to find somewhere else for one of them to be. Out of sight out of mind and it gives her time to dry up.

If you can't do that you have him out of sight in a sturdy pen with a friend and her multiple sturdy fence lines away. Long enough for her to dry up. When I've had to do this it takes longer for that to happen but it will.

He needs a come to Jesus meeting yesterday. If he's doing this after a correction then your correction wasn't effective and he'll end up seriously hurting someone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Best is to find somewhere else for one of them to be. Out of sight out of mind and it gives her time to dry up.

If you can't do that you have him out of sight in a sturdy pen with a friend and her multiple sturdy fence lines away. Long enough for her to dry up. When I've had to do this it takes longer for that to happen but it will.

He needs a come to Jesus meeting yesterday. If he's doing this after a correction then your correction wasn't effective and he'll end up seriously hurting someone.
Noted!

Do you know how much time is needed? If I find a place to leave him while my mare dries and both learn to be without each other? (For making him come home again).

I will start trailing with a stick or something to do proper corrections, I thought the mare had to do the corrections but she only corrects when the foal bites her hinds...
 

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You should plan on a minimum of 2 months. Preferably longer as I have had some go right back on the mare after 2 months.
Don't think the mare will wean the foal themselves, it won't happen. She will allow the foal to nurse either until you wean the foal, or you breed the mare back again.
Now would be a good time to build yourself a good sturdy corral. Put the foal in it, and start handling him. It might be easier for you to take the mare somewhere else. He will throw a fit for a short time, but it gets easier.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You should plan on a minimum of 2 months. Preferably longer as I have had some go right back on the mare after 2 months.
Don't think the mare will wean the foal themselves, it won't happen. She will allow the foal to nurse either until you wean the foal, or you breed the mare back again.
Now would be a good time to build yourself a good sturdy corral. Put the foal in it, and start handling him. It might be easier for you to take the mare somewhere else. He will throw a fit for a short time, but it gets easier.
Omg this killed me hahaha. I need to learn my options and what to do next :(. I have to find a place first and see who's going, this will be difficult... :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Well she will be going somewhere for sure, I will see if a neighbour can take her... how bad it will be in our training not being able to ride her for 2 months? :(

Edit; okay so I had a panic attack haha. I think I know what I will do;

We have 2 fenced 2 acres places. One is for our riding horses to be during the night and the other we had a corn plantation but besides lives a feral mare (that all my horses love).

Maybe I can start putting the foal in thr 2nd área with the feral mare for a couple hours a day and gradually make it more hours to finally leave him there until the mare dries?

The problem is that they can see each other from certain angles and of course hear each other.

While I do that I will teach the foal to chill to a post + rope? So I can take him to the pasture him not being able to access the mother but be "near" her.

When he has that dominated maybe I can start working my mare around him (starting with 500 - 1km distance) and add distance? Idk haha
 

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All anyone can tell you is what they themselves have done.
I would get my foals in between 4 and 5 months, they go in a stout corral, and I kick the mares back out to pasture. Yes, they can see each other, but they can't get to each other. Some say they even need to be out of hearing distance. I never found that to be a problem.
But the trick is, you need a good corral. Foals have been known to go thru, and over fences to get back to their dams.
Speaking of dams, experienced mares will send the foal a scathing look, if they look back at all. New broodmares will want to stand there and feel sorry for themselves and their foals. I've had mares that give me a look of relief when I take the foals. They are soooo done with them.

Just put the foal in a pen where he can't get out, or injure himself in trying.

You'll be fine.
 
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Nope. Its a one and done and they need apart for at least 8 weeks. No an hour here and two hours there.. I prefer 12 weeks but I had a mare that took forever to dry up. I left the last one here and only separated so there was always a pasture between them and it took two years. This is the first year she's been able to be back in with mom.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Nope. Its a one and done and they need apart for at least 8 weeks. No an hour here and two hours there.. I prefer 12 weeks but I had a mare that took forever to dry up. I left the last one here and only separated so there was always a pasture between them and it took two years. This is the first year she's been able to be back in with mom.
I mean so they start to get used to be by themselves and give them time to adjust gradually until they get comfortable to finally separate them until the mare dries.

The good thing is that the foal only drinks 3 to 4 times a day and the mare doesn't have too much milk. Sometimes she won't let the foal drink and she blocks him. The foal is usually off by himself all day long but if he can't see the mare when he wants to see her he will go nuts.

I'm going to upgrade a corral to make it secure for the foal so I will start putting him there and see the option of sending the mare somewhere (even though that's really rough for me).
 

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The foal is usually off by himself all day long but if he can't see the mare when he wants to see her he will go nuts.
If he's already going off then just get it over with. They are used to not being together side by side.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the replies guys! And sorry if I over reacted, I started reading a lot over the internet and got quite distressed about this since it's my first time owning horses. I talked with my boyfriend and we will build a good fence in the 2nd field so the mare will be there and the foal will be kept with the gelding. When taking them to the pastures the foal will be kept in a safe corral we have to make it bombproof until he's over it and the mare is finally dry.

I think this will be a difficult thing to do, but need to be done. I'm alreday working with the foal in many stuff but gets distracted when the mare moves (not always though, sometimes he can really be many hours without minding her) and I need his full attention.
 

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I prefer a fenceline seperation. I have small paddocks, side by side. My plan for weaning is to move my colt into the paddock next to his mother. They can see each other without nursing. Once they are comfortable with that setup, I can move him or her to the next paddock over, so they have a paddock between them with a different horse in between. And I have one more paddock further down that I can use.

It sounds like you would prefer a different method of weaning. I have seen both methods used successfully.

Actually I have a suspicion my mare may wean her foal herself, as she discourages nursing and walks off, especially if he gets rough or rowdy. He is already fairly independent, so I'm not expecting a terribly difficult weaning.

Most people prefer to just send one off for weaning and let that be it. Or if you take your mare off camping, the foal can be weaned that way.

There are many different ways to wean. My paint mare wasn't weaned until age 2, but out in a herd with her mom.
 

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Take this with a grain of salt as I've only weaned one foal. Also, this foal was a filly so no chance of her breeding to her mother.

I separated them at six months on the same property. They were upset for about two days. My filly went with another 5 month old that was being weaned as well.

The other foal got moved to another property about two months later. I didn't want my filly to be alone so I just put her back with her mom and another mare. The filly went right back to nursing and would occasionally comfort nurse if she was upset by something. Mom finally kicked her to the curb with that at about 18 months. I honestly didn't really care. I still took the mare out riding and some camping trips. The filly stayed back with the other mare and was fine.

They still live together to this day and I don't have any problems when they are separated. Either one that is left behind is still with other horses.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Take this with a grain of salt as I've only weaned one foal. Also, this foal was a filly so no chance of her breeding to her mother.

I separated them at six months on the same property. They were upset for about two days. My filly went with another 5 month old that was being weaned as well.

The other foal got moved to another property about two months later. I didn't want my filly to be alone so I just put her back with her mom and another mare. The filly went right back to nursing and would occasionally comfort nurse if she was upset by something. Mom finally kicked her to the curb with that at about 18 months. I honestly didn't really care. I still took the mare out riding and some camping trips. The filly stayed back with the other mare and was fine.

They still live together to this day and I don't have any problems when they are separated. Either one that is left behind is still with other horses.
Amazing! I think what I need most is for them to be okay being alone. I want to go out with my mare and not the foal (so my mare also learns to trail without other horses), plus I want to train my foal without the mare being around so he can focus better. In general I love taking the foal to trails because he exercises a lot (he will not move much when he's free in the pasture, but won't stop galloping when being on the trail!), sees the world having company (and I'm loving how reckless he's right now!!) and also learns to trust me.
 

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Nope, he's 9 months old waiting for until 1.5 - 2 years of age at least.
Any particular reason why you're waiting that long? Keep in mind, even if you do successfully wean him, if you put him back in with his dam afterwards until he's eighteen months or two years old... There's a high possibility that he's going to get her pregnant. Yes, colts can and do breed their mothers. Horses have no incest taboos. So unless you're fully prepared to accept those consequences, I would recommend that you get him gelded now.
 

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Agreed, unless you have the means to keep him permanently separated until gelding (from any female horse not just his mother) you are looking at unplanned pregnancies. At about a year (little less, little more) sperm are mature and if he can, he will. You have no way of knowing when that happens. No reason to leave him ungelded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Oh basically because everyone around (including the vet) suggested to wait a bit for him to grow. We schedulled the procedure for march 2023.

Edit too add: his testicles are not down yet.

I can have him separated from the other mares when seasons come.

Still, isn't it better to wait for the animal to stop growing before this to be done? At least that's what I recommend with dogs (even though a dog can reproduce at 6-8 months). Hormones play a big role in growth and normal functioning.
 
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