I have a four year old qh stallion that we pasture bred as a three year old and he got all of them in foal last year. This year he was turned out with three maiden mares and two are still coming in heat after three cycles. I hauled one up to the vet and he checked her and said her hyman is not ruptured, so that means he is not breeding them...I am stumped as to why. They all act like they love each other and get along great pastured together. I was suspicious when I didn't notice him cover any of them and I usually see him breed them. He is healthy and happy and up to date on worming and vacs. Any ideas why he not performing?
The fact that the stallion has been housed continuously with the mares may result in a degree of intimidation in some young stallions. Stallions have a highly developed single-trial avoidance learning curve related to negative sexual situations, so that is one possibility.
Another possibility is that he has low libido. This could be furthered by having bred the mares last season multiple times - seeing as he was pasture bred - and overuse as a young stallion can result in refusal or a reluctance to breed later. I am strongly opposed to pasture breeding for a variety of reasons, but with a young stallion, this is certainly one.
It is also possible that he has been injured and is not breeding as a result of discomfort - have you closely evaluated his penis and testicles for signs of injury?
You would probably be well advised to remove him from the pasture, and introduce him in-hand to the mares only when they are in a good receptive estrus. Tease the mares hard, allowing the stallion to get a good degree of arousal and ecouraging enthusiasm, and breed them ideally only once during the cycle in order to avoid overuse and get his interest back.
In the event that you still have no success breeding in-hand, I would encourage you to have a veterinarian experienced with stallions reproduction evaluate him for internal reproductive issues.
He has not been injured, I always examine his penis and testicles at feeding time and he is fine. Last year he had three mares, one experienced pasture bred mare and two maiden mares, he was very gentle and sweet with them and they all fell in love with him. All of the mares are always nibbling on him and talking to him and he shows them the same attention back. Everyone gets along great and it is very peaceful to watch them graze and live together.
Could it be possible that I made a big mistake puting in three maiden mares alone without an experienced breeder with them? I really think it made a difference last year...because the maiden mares were scared and didn't want him to mount them, but once they saw the other mare being bred they soon submitted on their next heat cycles.
I also wanted to say that he is an extremely easy to handle stallion, he has always lived in a pasture with other horses, I do not believe in isolation. He has never been at the top of the pecking order in the herd. I have been riding him under saddle since he was two and a half and he is very well trained and the only place he has ever been allowed to act like a stallion is in his pasture. And he knows the difference because I have a routine with him that I always follow everyday when I am with him. He is a quiet horse, never fusses over anything, but knows that he is a stallion.
My vet suggested that I twitch the maiden mares and allow him to breed them by hand. I will try this when they come back in heat, I have already removed the mares back to their pasture. He has four other mares running with him now, and they are happy.
He lives on a very large isolated pasture with geldings except during the breeding season. They can not see or hear any other horses anywhere. I remove the geldings and haul them down to the other pasture and then introduce a small group of mares to the stud in his pasture. They will lope around and show off for a few minutes and then everyone calms right down and starts grazing. At feeding time they all come galloping up to their indiviual corrals and eat and I check everyone over. After he eats he always drops and masterbates in his corral and talks to each of the mares as they can all touch noses. One of the maiden mares got out of the pasture and when my husband put her back in he really hounded her and made her stand to be bred. I was told he was quite aggressive toward this mare and she finally submitted to him. Does this sound like low libido? Could it be that he doesn't prefer the color of the other maiden mare?
I just need to figure out why he didn't bred them and go from there. I need to get the mares currently in with him checked in a another week and see if he is breeding them as they are all experience pasture breeders. Maybe the maidens wouldn't let him...and not wanting to get kicked by them he just didn't...I am speculating and throwing out ideas.
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