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Thread: Maiden mare - age?

  1. #1

    Default Maiden mare - age?

    What age would you say would be the latest possible breeding age for a maiden mare?
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  2. #2
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    Interested to see replies from experienced 'mare owners'..... I know people who put mares into foal for the first time in their early 20s! I think that's a little late.
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  3. #3
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    My boss put her Merryn in foal at 16 - has owned her since she was a youngster so knows it was her first time. Her daughter is now a gorgeous, fit, healthy 5-year-old and Merryn is back competing at 1.20m and winning TREC championships Merryn was a very fit mare though with no known health conditions and had always been fighting fit, so putting her in foal at 16 probably wasn't a major gamble.

  4. #4

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    Thanks, would be interesting to hear others opinions too, im just weighing up my options at the moment.
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  5. #5
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    i've always been told 15 as a ball park figure but i suppose it all depends on the actual mare and her fitness etc etc

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    Fertility declines slightly at 12 according to my vet, so can get harder to conceive from then on.
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  7. #7
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    I suppose it all depends on the mare - mares are being put into foal first time later and later as they are having a 'career' first.

    At the stud we've seen it become more and more common to be having mares in at 15+ for first foal, provided that they are fit and healthy and that a scan doesn't show any problems then we're happy to take them. We did turn away a 19yo mare but that was based on her condition at the time.

  8. #8

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    We have covered 15 year old maiden mares and they have foaled with no problems, i would be wary of covering any maidens much older than that

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    Quote Originally Posted by madlady View Post
    I suppose it all depends on the mare - mares are being put into foal first time later and later as they are having a 'career' first.
    Like humans

    I think so long as the mare is fit and healthy 15-18 years? Possibly more

  10. #10
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    My mare was 12 when I put her infoal (if she had been any older I wouldn't have BTW) and she'd had quite a tough working life prior to that, she was perfectly healthy though. Shes aged physically about 5 years though.

    Its relative as with anything though. 12 is the ballpark figure my vets abide by.

    Foaling is a risk anyway, and the older they are, the bigger the risk with a maiden.

    Not only does their fertility start to drop, but estrogen levels which effect muscle elasticity .. there was a mid-teens broodie last year who split her abdominals when foaling... think guts hanging out in a sac of skin underneath her stomach

    My mare was fit when I put her infoal and I wanted to keep working her, but rise in estrogen levels effect muscle elasticity aswell, and she started dropping her quarters over poles, I knew it was time to stop riding her, and that was very early in her term, about 1/3rd of the way through.

    Its not a risk I'd take with a good working mare... there are plenty of people with retired mares that are prepared to take the risk though.

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