What a long, strange trip this has been! I have an 8 y.o. TWH mare, maiden (we are both new at this), in great shape and healthy. She has always been a "silent heat" mare. We are breeding her AI to a stud in TN (we live in WI) I have teased her to the stud at her boarding barn (currently) and get nothing, ever. I have tried regumate and leutalyse (? spelling) and got nothing (completed at the end of April). We are now trailering her to a repo specialist (who is quite a bit more expensive then my vet) who anounced on Friday May 21st that she was in heat about 7-10 days ago!!! This of course was in between vet visits and at the end of when I started teasing her to the new resident stallion. The repo specialist hit her with another dose of leutalyse and told us to bring her back on Wednesday May 26th and she may be ready to breed then. I figure I am currently about $485 into this (not counting the first half of my $600 stud fee). My husband is ready to explode and I am tired of smiling and congratulating my friends whose mares caught on the first heat of the year. I am beginning to feel like I am wasting a lot of time and money. My timing is off, the mare is of NO help, I'm running out of money and my vacation time so far has been spent meeting vets and hauling this mare! I will have to consider sending her directly to the stallion if this next cycle is another loss. With gas prices being what they are, I'm looking at another $1,000 for transport, board and vet care down to TN. When does a person say when? How much is too much to spend? Is this situation rare? Do many other mare owners have similar situations? I doubt I will get more then $3,000 for this foal - best case scenerio- if I sell. In case you are asking WHY I want to breed this mare so much, here are some reasons: I love this mare with all my heart-owned her since she was a yearling. I own her dam (23 years old this year!) also and I really want to keep these two in my pasture thru their descendents forever. She's a great show mare (like her dam) and has fabulous papers and she has personality plus. I read a lot of these posts, but all deal with a specific problem. I don't have that, I just have a lot of headache! Any similar stories? Any words of encouragement?
twhgait, I empathise. And so will many other breeders, I'm sure.... Last year we spent all of our money, all of our spare time, and almost all of our emotional resources to breed 4 mares. Well, the only one that caught was the maiden. After nurturing her along all year, she lost her beautiful black filly in foaling. What a lot of heartache. And why do we do it? We do it because we love the animals and the involvement, and possibly the challenge.
This year we are doing it again! But with less hauling of mares. And so far we have 2 in foal, one being bred by live cover this week, and 2 more to go.
It sounds like the value of your foal to you will certainly outweigh the value of selling her. It's not fair to equate what you are putting into her to selling price if that is not what you want of her(him). The advice I would give is with a difficult mare, either go 110% or not at all.... Otherwise you will be whittling away at your savings and the breeding season. Consider keeping her with the vet, do all the ultrasounds necessary to see when ovulation is imminent, and make sure it happens! Cost saving doesn't usually occur by missing steps (as I found out - unless you rely on luck alone!)
I hope you get your new family member!
wendy Posted From: 184.108.40.206
Posted on Monday, May 24, 2004 - 05:32 pm:
twhgait-I personally would go for it, as long as your vet thinks everything is ok. It sounds like you are wanting this foal for emotional reasons rather then monitary ones. Is there a stallion closer to you that you would want to breed her to? Just thinking that sometimes mares that are harder to judge and get bred having the breeding stallion right there would make things easier. If it were my mare and I knew or owned the stallion I would pasture them together and let mother nature take its course. I do know others don't agree with pasture breeding and that's fine, to each his/her own. But perhaps if she was closer to the stallion you were breeding to you could do an in-hand cover. That way when she was ready you wouldn't have to wait for the shipping. Good luck!
Thanks Shauna and Wendy! Geez, I couldn't imagine trying to breed 4 mares, EVER!!! You have way more stanima then me! The really funny part happened this afternoon when I went out to see the girls and this mare's Dam broke down for the stud as soon as we walked in the barn!!! I had to laugh, the coincidence was too much to ignore right now! I will keep going (sigh...) and praying on it and I will follow your advice and keep the mare at the repo specialist as long as he feels the time is right. It's $50/day for board and a palp, but I figure in the long run I'll save from not having my own vet out numerous times/month to monitor/breed her. Unfortunately, there are no studs around here with the bloodlines I want. The stud at our barn is a AQHA, very nice but wrong breed! My sales-minded husband thought coming up with a price/marketing value was a good idea to help keep the costs within reason. He has a good point, but I sometimes think I'd give away the house rather then admit defeat! Don't worry, I'm not selling the house! Keep us in your thoughts and thank you for reminding me I'm not the only one! Thanks for letting me vent!!
Jos Posted From: 220.127.116.11
Posted on Monday, May 24, 2004 - 10:59 pm:
The use of the hormone combination progesterone and estradiol (P&E) can be valuable in these silent heat mares. 90% of cycling mares that receive the treatment will have a 35 mm follicle present on day 8 post-treatment end, and it can be started at any point in their cycle.
Hello everyone! Just a quick update..... The mare went to the specialist this morning and they have a "45" follicle and went ahead and ordered the semen!!!! YIPEEE! She can come home on Friday morning, once they confirm she ovulated. Now I have to get thru the next 14 days, then the next 40 days, then the remainder of a pregnancy (hopefully).
wendy Posted From: 18.104.22.168
Posted on Wednesday, May 26, 2004 - 03:32 pm:
Congrats, hope all works out well.
Sandra KS Posted From: 22.214.171.124
Posted on Friday, June 25, 2004 - 05:36 pm:
I am in much the same situation, twhgait. My mare has had 6 foals by live cover, was open last year, and this year with a new owner (me) we are trying AI. No luck on the first try, now we are waiting on the second try. I am very glad I budgeted double the stud fee for vet expenses, but I had been hoping not to have to spend it all! We will check 1st week of July...I'm keeping my fingers crossed!
Sandra, I wish you the BEST!! The posters to my rant were exactly correct when they told me to keep up and give it my all. My long saga did not end with my mare's follicle. The semen the breeder sent up was "poor quality" with less then 10% motility. You can imagine my anger and frustration (the breeder feels it was a bad batch of extender - they are willing to work with me to a certain degree). We want to believe the stallion owner/manager is as intent on getting our mares in foal as we are, but it's amazing how many people had the exact same experiences, some a few times over and with different stallion barns. The repro vet said this wasn't the first time he got bad semen out of that state either. My husband just ran into a couple that were breeding their mare like us and received FOUR BAD shipments and the mare's still open!! I think the breeders win either way because in my situation they still have the 1st half of my stud fee regardless of what happens to my mare. They can also just "threaten" your contract for a live foal if you don't "pay up" on a bad shipment. If you book enough outside mares and get the first 1/2 stud fee, you have to figure they are already in the "black" in their books. Us mare owners, on the other hand, have no choice but to keep on getting shipments and keep on paying and praying that eventually one will be of good quality. I think there should be laws against this stuff! The whole experience has left a very bad taste in my mouth. I will be thinking long and hard before next year's breeding. I don't want to start an argument with stallion owners as I'm sure there are more reputable ones then not, but I equally feel that it's important for mare owners to understand that this can and (apparently, quite frequently) does happen and it will add more $$$ to what already builds up on the mare's end. My mare did take on that semen and is currently 30 days in. Do know that miracles do happen! The repro specialist does want another (sigh-where's my checkbook???) ultrasound on 7/8 just to make one last check before her five month mark. The common thing that happens with poor quality semen is that the mare can end up absorbing early. My personal vet feels she's "out of the woods" now, but I'm going to make sure before I start apologizing to anyone. I will keep my fingers crossed for you!!
Sandra KS Posted From: 126.96.36.199
Posted on Monday, June 28, 2004 - 05:21 pm:
Thanks twhgait - I'm glad you did get your mare settled! The stallion owner in my case uses a repro specialist and the semen is good quality - but I don't have a clinic nearby so I am using a local vet. I think if I do this again I will just send her to a clinic!
I am a first time breeder, breeding a maiden 8yr old TB mare. I tried four times with no success. I was going to give up after #4, but decided to give it one more try. Well, she took and I got twins! Today I had one of them pinched. Hopefully, the procedure did not damage the other embryo, and I have a pregnant mare. I live in the Los Angeles area and vet fees are very high. It has been a very emotional rollercoaster ride for me. I was told it would be cheaper and more productive if I sent her to a breeding farm/clinic. It definetly was. Unfortunately, she did not take at the breeding farm. I did the 5th try at home. I felt more on top of the situation, and my vet although more expensive than the clinic, was really on top of the situation. After she ovulated, we lavaged her and gave her oxytocin shots for 2 days. We knew she had a chance of twinning because she had 2 follicles. I think the after ovulation therapies we used and the fact that she was not stressed out by leaving home helped her get in foal. These were the only things we did different. Unfortunately, I had to transport her to a clinic to have the embryo reduction, and I am not out of the woods yet. We will ultra sound on 7-23-04 to see if she is still carrying the other embryo. Wish me luck. I have spent $5,000.00 so far! My husband is having a mental break down!
You've gone thru a lot for this foal already! I admire yours and others persistence with these situations. I was certainly at the end of my financial "rope" when my mare did take so I don't know what more I would have been able to do had the situation been different. By now your ultrasound is done and I would love an update! My mare is currently at 66 days (Yipee!) and everthing looked really good at her last ultrasound in July. He's coming out again on 8/9 and doing another check. I guess I won't be comfortable with this pregnancy until the baby is on the ground!!!
Marianne Bordier Posted From: 188.8.131.52
Posted on Saturday, December 25, 2004 - 06:55 pm:
I haven't been good at keeping up on this site.My mare was pregnant at day 25 after the pinch, but then when ultra sounded at 4 mos. the vet said she was not pregnant. I was heartbroken. I can not help thinking she is still pregnant and I am having another vet come check on the 29th. I am probably just throwing my money away, but she has gained weight and I have heard so many stories about vets being wrong. If she is not pregnant, I want to buy a youngster.I have one waiting in the wings. She will be 2 in spring, by Batido out of a TB mare. Have you ever tried selling a stud fee?
twhgait Posted From: 184.108.40.206
Posted on Monday, December 27, 2004 - 11:29 am:
Hey Marianne, I'm sorry for your news. I do know that pinching can result in the loss of both pregnancies, so I guess it's possible. At around 120 days, my understanding is that the foal can drop below the pelvic rim and be too hard to palpate to accurately determine a pregnancy (but I stand to be corrected on the specific days that it gets too hard). At your other vet visit, have them take blood and check for pregnancy that way. You know your mare best, so if you even have a small suspicion that she may still be pregnant you'll want to confirm that to keep up on her shots (vs. throwing money out the window!) I was told too to just buy a baby cause that's the cheapest way to go. Unfortunately, most of us are breeding our mare that we want offspring from, so buying a baby doesn't accomplish that goal. I do know of people selling their stud fees. I suspect you shouldn't have too much trouble with that, as long as the stud is a popular one. Go to a breed specific website and offer it up!
I HAVE A OLDER MARE THAT CAME IN, PUT HER WITH THE STUD SHE GAVE IN 1 TIME AND THATS ALL. WE LEFT THEM TOGETHER FOR 2HRS AND SHE WOULD NOT LET HIM TOUCH HER AGAIN. IS THIS NORMAL. WE KNOW HE DID NOTHING AGAIN, CAUSE WE WERE THERE.
We have two mares that have been that way with our stud... our stud bred each mare one time and they no longer accepted him after that and they have been indeed pregnant. the one mare (the oldest) has done this for the past two years. so it must be something each mare knows that once is enough!LOL.
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