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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
i have a 20 year old gelding and a 31 year old mare. I have run in stalls and a large paddock area and then about 8 acres of pasture. I have had two boarders in the past 14 years , each for a couple of years at a time.
First border was paint gelding about 10 years old. He was higher in the pecking order than my gelding…who is always on the bottom, and never tries to contradict that. The Mare has always been the top horse. The boarder , my daughter’s horse, would beat up on my gelding a lot, but they managed to graze together and eat in their own run in stalls, and for the most part be okay. My mare and my gelding was not kept apart.

Then we had a mare who was about 10 years old. They all got along well.

Now my daughter has brought over a new 8 year old gelding. My two horses welcomed him in very nicely. But very quickly, the new horse is now guarding my mare and has kicked my gelding out of the herd. Keeps him a good distance from my mare. The new gelding even controls my mare and she gives up her feed for him, which I have NEVER seen before.

We have had to enclose the stalls for safety for my gelding. We used large gates and open them after meals.

It has just been a week, however, My gelding has been bitten, kicked, ran thru an small gate and tore it off the wall . He seems to not be hurt too badly.

I have asked my daughter to find another stable for her new horse.
My question is….do you think this new gelding is acting like a stalion? Or is this just him being the Alpha horse. He absolutely does not let my mare go anyplace unless he wants to go there.

Thanks you for your comments. 😊
 

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You need to separate the new guy from the 2 who have been there all along. Even if they weren't considerably older than him, 2 geldings & 1 mare is always going to cause issues. If the older gelding wasn't 20 years old, you might be able to separate the mare from the group and the 2 geldings might get along. In your situation, I would separate the 2 older horses from the younger and let them be in pastures that are close together so they can see each other, but not be able to bully the older horses. Someone is going to get hurt badly in the current situation.
 

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I don't feel there is such a thing as "acting like a stallion" I have known many stallions in my life who have lived quiet happy lives in a herd of geldings with little or no conflict. Often times mares are the herd leader and control a lot of the dynamics. Herds usually contain a power struggle, especially with new horses. This guy sounds like he's been top dog for a long long time and he may likely always be that way. Perhaps he has only ever been housed with mares and now feels threatened by having another gelding around. My 19y/o gelding sound like a very muted version of this guy, he likes to control the herd just not nearly to that extreme and without much violence just the odd bite here and there. I'm a huge supporter of "letting them figure it out" BUT.. top dogs can be really tough cookies once they are on a power trip and if he is endangering another horse that badly I would get him gone or separate them asap.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
You need to separate the new guy from the 2 who have been there all along. Even if they weren't considerably older than him, 2 geldings & 1 mare is always going to cause issues. If the older gelding wasn't 20 years old, you might be able to separate the mare from the group and the 2 geldings might get along. In your situation, I would separate the 2 older horses from the younger and let them be in pastures that are close together so they can see each other, but not be able to bully the older horses. Someone is going to get hurt badly in the current situation.
Thank you. I’m keeping my gelding in the stall tonight and going forward , until the new deluding is gone, which could be in a matter of days. Tomorrow I will separate my two from the new gelding. Thank you for your reply.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You need to separate the new guy from the 2 who have been there all along. Even if they weren't considerably older than him, 2 geldings & 1 mare is always going to cause issues. If the older gelding wasn't 20 years old, you might be able to separate the mare from the group and the 2 geldings might get along. In your situation, I would separate the 2 older horses from the younger and let them be in pastures that are close together so they can see each other, but not be able to bully the older horses. Someone is going to get hurt badly in the current situation.
I don't feel there is such a thing as "acting like a stallion" I have known many stallions in my life who have lived quiet happy lives in a herd of geldings with little or no conflict. Often times mares are the herd leader and control a lot of the dynamics. Herds usually contain a power struggle, especially with new horses. This guy sounds like he's been top dog for a long long time and he may likely always be that way. Perhaps he has only ever been housed with mares and now feels threatened by having another gelding around. My 19y/o gelding sound like a very muted version of this guy, he likes to control the herd just not nearly to that extreme and without much violence just the odd bite here and there. I'm a huge supporter of "letting them figure it out" BUT.. top dogs can be really tough cookies once they are on a power trip and if he is endangering another horse that badly I would get him gone or separate them asap.
Thank you for your reply. I have always let the horses work things out in the past, however, this horse seems to be different. I think I can agree with you, as far as Rip , ( the new gelding) being top dog for a while now. Mira, my mare has always been the leader, and now she is being controlled by this new guy! She can not move unless Rip lets her. I just think it’s more than just working out their pecking order. But, I could be wrong.
My daughter has another stable she can take her horse to, and he would be closer to her home. I just am not feeling comfortable with him and it is very stressful all around.
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Thank you. I’m keeping my gelding in the stall tonight and going forward , until the new deluding is gone, which could be in a matter of days. Tomorrow I will separate my two from the new gelding. Thank you for your reply.
You're welcome. I've let them work out differences in the past but I've found age can be a limiting factor. My mare Patti was 6 or 7 when I brought a new mare home, one I had saved up for and worked a long time to be able to afford. Patti would give every new horse grief but it had never come down to injury in the past. The new mare was a yearling and seemed to be getting along with everyone, she's not a real dominant personality anyhow, but Patti decided she didn't like her for some reason. Next thing I know, this expensive little filly is coming up to the barn with a big tear from inside her fetlock up through the knee and out the gaskin. I learned all I never wanted to know about horsey knee anatomy that night. Now, I introduce a new horse to everyone but Patti, especially to the top dog horse and let them buddy up before I allow Patti near them. I've had to separate Patti a time or 2 from new kids on the block. She can be a real heifer. So I'm glad to see you're going to remove the youngster. Your two oldsters have seniority.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You're welcome. I've let them work out differences in the past but I've found age can be a limiting factor. My mare Patti was 6 or 7 when I brought a new mare home, one I had saved up for and worked a long time to be able to afford. Patti would give every new horse grief but it had never come down to injury in the past. The new mare was a yearling and seemed to be getting along with everyone, she's not a real dominant personality anyhow, but Patti decided she didn't like her for some reason. Next thing I know, this expensive little filly is coming up to the barn with a big tear from inside her fetlock up through the knee and out the gaskin. I learned all I never wanted to know about horsey knee anatomy that night. Now, I introduce a new horse to everyone but Patti, especially to the top dog horse and let them buddy up before I allow Patti near them. I've had to separate Patti a time or 2 from new kids on the block. She can be a real heifer. So I'm glad to see you're going to remove the youngster. Your two oldsters have seniority.
Yes, yes, they do and they have been mine for 15 years! How scary to see all that on your little filly!
 

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Yes, yes, they do and they have been mine for 15 years! How scary to see all that on your little filly!
It took my breath away. I thought for sure I was going to have to put her down, less than 1 month after I bought her. We got lucky and there wasn't actually any joint damage, it was all to the soft tissues, but seeing the knee and all of its structures like that.......MAN! I don't ever need to see that again.
 
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