Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men and an Arabian Horse Breeder Part 3

Part 1
Part 2

When I tease mares here, I leave the stallion in his stall. It has a partial wall that goes up high enough that the stallion can reach over it and touch the mares but the he couldn't get over it to breed the Arabian mares. It's works great for me because I can tease mares by myself and everything is relatively safe. Normally, if a mare is in heat as the she gets close to the stallion, his talking and screaming will cause her to begin to show sings of heat. A mare that is ready to breed will throw her body right into the wall as close as she can get to the Arabian stallion.

This mare I was pushing up close to stallion and she was rearing, striking, screaming and trying to run away. Having no idea what to expect from this mare in heat, I had been uable to tell if she was cycling or not. Now that I was pretty sure the Arabian mare was in heat and I was getting the same response, it was time to change the plan. Realizing maybe this was fear on the mare's part, I decided to approach the stallion in a more conservative manner. I brought the Arabian mare up close to the wall but just out of reach of the stallion. I stood there with the mare. The stallion realized that something was different. He quit screaming and got quiet and thoughtful. The horse was stretching his neck as far as he could, trying to reach the Arabian mare. The stallion was making subtle sounds and blowing softly on the mare. As the mare became accustomed to the quiet advances of the stallion, I moved the Arabian mare a littler closer until, finally, he could just barely touch the mare lightly with his muzzle. He tried to nuzzle her but could just reach the hairs on her coat. As the Arabian mare's eyes softened as she relaxed, I movedthe mare a little closer so the stallion could actually nuzzle her. It wasn't but a few minutes and the Arabian mare moved herself right up next to the wall accepting the advances of the stallion. With just a little time and patience this new mare was showing like any of the other mares in my herd..

After this one session I have been able to put the Arabian mare out in the paddock that adjoins the stallion's stall. The mare comes up on her own and visits the stallion regularly now that she is no longer afraid of him. When the mare is in heat she shows actively to the stallion. I'm not longer worried about this Arabian mare being a breeding problem or a lactating anestrus mare. I believe when the time comes to breed this mare, I won't have any more problems. Wish I had realized sooner that I was trying to breed the mare on my terms instead of hers, I probably would be having that first foal by my stallion this year that I had hoped for. Whodda thunk.....

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