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remaining a stallion an advantage for 'enduring'?


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#11 tiki-bird

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 09:51 AM

Narsarka,
In my very limited experience, I would agree that gelding my colt took away his drive. He was at the track as a three year old, and he was clearly competitive with his training-mates and showed promise. Unfortunately, he bucked his shins and came home before running in a race. He healed and wintered over here at home. The following spring, one day he became too insistent that he wanted to get at the mares, including his dam (who, bless her heart, really tried not to show heat to him). I decided to geld him. (At the time, I just assumed I could always breed another one, as I owned his sire and dam. Unfortunately, I lost his sire a couple years later.) Sent him back into race training. He had no interest. To this day, he has a terrible work ethic, and I have to out-think him in order to catch him if he knows he's going to be worked. Once under saddle, he does what I ask, but it saddens me that he doesn't enjoy it.

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#12 Slide

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 10:42 AM

Sue, I agree with you that the general perception is that colts are stronger than geldings. I think most men (who dominate the TB industry) can't imagine life with out balls. Most of the people that I've worked with in the ten I've spent years on top farms in central Kentucky, just want to do what's best for the individual horse. They don't geld most TBs at the track primarily because they will lose residual value as breeding stallions. A lot of colts do get gelded however and go on to be better performers, usually because they are easily distracted by their surroundings or have one or two retained testicles. Depending on what level the horse is racing, the rate of castration is higher. Lower levels = more geldings. The older the racehorse, the more likely it is to be a gelding too. You pretty much know at some point that the horse will earn you more money racing that it will in the breeding shed or as a stallion prospect so... off go the balls and onto more races goes the horse.

Katie, I wouldn't worry too much about cutting them off. It seems that you can put them back on, if it's really worth it. Look at Valarie Kanavy and Cash. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/4443881.stm

Good luck,

Sarah

Here is the AAEP's position on gelding: http://www.aaep.org/castration.htm

#13 Hoofhaven

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 10:44 AM

I would tend to agree that being intact gives them a greater drive. Stallions on their own are more active, they run more, they show off more, they are more competitive just on their own. They always seem to have more energy, and are more sleek. Hormones control the entire body, so having those extra ones that are meant to give them that "edge" in a natural herd enviroment to me would only seem logical that they would give them an edge in other ways.

Look at any critter you geld/castrate/neuter. Don't they all get fat and lazy?? Cats, Dogs, Cattle...lol My stallion exercises himself, and always looks good! My geldings look pregnant unless I make them work! hahaha

As far as keeping him alone, it depends on the horse. My stallion stays in with one of his bred mares. Many are okay pastured with other geldings, it just depends on the horse. My mare doesn't take any shenanigans from him, doesn't let him haze her either. I did have him in with a gelding before as well, and the gelding would yield to him, but is just as full of himself, so they go along well and played a lot. If the stallion got to rough with the play the gelding would make it clear he didn't appreciate it and no problems. However I had one gelding escape, jump IN to the stud pen (he's gonna be a SHUS candidate lol ) and the stud chased and chased and chased him, till I brought a mare over to distract him. So, in my experience it has to do with the compatibility of the individuals.

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#14 Slide

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 10:51 AM

Narsarka,
In my very limited experience, I would agree that gelding my colt took away his drive. He was at the track as a three year old, and he was clearly competitive with his training-mates and showed promise. Unfortunately, he bucked his shins and came home before running in a race. He healed and wintered over here at home. The following spring, one day he became too insistent that he wanted to get at the mares, including his dam (who, bless her heart, really tried not to show heat to him). I decided to geld him. (At the time, I just assumed I could always breed another one, as I owned his sire and dam. Unfortunately, I lost his sire a couple years later.) Sent him back into race training. He had no interest. To this day, he has a terrible work ethic, and I have to out-think him in order to catch him if he knows he's going to be worked. Once under saddle, he does what I ask, but it saddens me that he doesn't enjoy it.


Hi tiki-bird,

There are a lot of variables in your horse's situation beyond the castration. I wouldn't be too quick to blame his lack of work ethic on it.

Best wishes,

Sarah

#15 Slide

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 11:05 AM

Here's a good article on gelding and performance: http://www.pedigree-...pdf/Gelding.pdf

#16 Slide

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 11:36 AM

I would tend to agree that being intact gives them a greater drive. Stallions on their own are more active, they run more, they show off more, they are more competitive just on their own. They always seem to have more energy, and are more sleek. Hormones control the entire body, so having those extra ones that are meant to give them that "edge" in a natural herd enviroment to me would only seem logical that they would give them an edge in other ways.

Look at any critter you geld/castrate/neuter. Don't they all get fat and lazy?? Cats, Dogs, Cattle...lol My stallion exercises himself, and always looks good! My geldings look pregnant unless I make them work! hahaha


Hi Hoofhaven, a lot of times this is wasted energy. In racing and endurance situations, you have to constantly direct the horse's energy into its work and a top horse will take its down time to conserve its energy. A blatant example of a bad situation is a horse that constantly walks its stall or paddock fence. They might keep themselves in relatively good shape, but they generally won't be able to rate themselves and conserve energy for when they actually need it. Most people don't have to worry about this, so it's not as big of a concern. However, if you are trying to train a top competitor in a high performance discipline, these behavioral issues are a big factor and gelding a horse can greatly reduce the amount of energy it is "driven" to waste by its inherent sexual behavior.

Best wishes,

Sarah

PS By the way, it's great that you let your stallion live with your bred mares. I bet he loves the company.

#17 forevertiki

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 02:40 PM

- from a been there done that, point of view, geldings rule in AERC competition, as well as on the flat track in Arabian racing.