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Encyclopedia > Stallion (horse)
A stallion

A stallion is a male horse that has not been castrated. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Binomial name Equus caballus Linnaeus, 1758 The horse (Equus caballus, sometimes seen as a subspecies of the Wild Horse, Equus ferus caballus) is a large odd-toed ungulate mammal, one of ten modern species of the genus Equus. ... Castration (also referred as: gelding, neutering, orchiectomy, orchidectomy, and oophorectomy) is any action, surgical, chemical, or otherwise, by which a male loses the functions of the testes or a female loses the functions of the ovaries. ...


Stallions will follow the conformation and phenotype of their breed, but within that standard, the presence of hormones such as testosterone may give stallions a thicker, "cresty" neck compared to mares and geldings, as well as a somewhat more muscular physique. See Equine conformation ... Individuals in the mollusk species Donax variabilis show diverse coloration and patterning in their phenotypes. ... // This page is a list of horse and pony breeds, and also includes terms used to describe types of horses that are not breeds but are commonly mistaken for breeds. ... Norepinephrine A hormone (from Greek όρμή - to set in motion) is a chemical messenger from one cell (or group of cells) to another. ... Testosterone is a steroid hormone from the androgen group. ... 13 year old Peruvian Paso mare A broodmare and foal In English, a mare (an old Germanic word) is a female horse; the word is also an etymological root of marshal (originally marescalcus horse servant). Mares are considered easier to handle than males, which are called stallions or after castration... A gelding is a castrated animal—in English, a castrated male horse. ...


Temperament varies widely based on genetics and training, but because of their instincts as herd animals, they may be prone to aggressive behavior, particularly toward other stallions, and thus require careful management by knowledgeable handlers. However, with proper training and management, stallions are effective equine athletes at the highest levels of many disciplines, including horse racing, horse shows, and international Olympic competition. DNA, the molecular basis for inheritance. ... WikiProject horse training is about methods of training horses, and all the related aspects of the relationship between people and horses. ... Instinct is the word used to describe inherent dispositions towards particular actions. ... Horse-racing is an equestrian sporting activity which has been practiced over the centuries; the chariot races of Roman times were an early example, as was the contest of the steeds of the god Odin and the giant Hrungnir in Norse mythology. ... A horse show is a judged exhibition of horses and ponies. ... Equestrianism made its Summer Olympics debut at the 1900 Summer Olympics in Paris, France. ...

Contents

Herd behaviour

Main article: Horse behavior

Contrary to popular myth, the stallion is not the leader of a herd, but rather serves in a role to defend and protect the herd from predators and other stallions. The leadership role is held by a mare, known colloquially as the "lead mare" or "boss mare." The mare determines the movement of the herd as it travels to obtain food, water, and shelter. She also determines the route the herd takes when fleeing from danger. Horse behavior is best understood from the perspective that horses are prey animals with a well-developed fight-or-flight instinct. ... This snapping turtle is trying to make a meal of a Canada goose, but the goose is too wary. ... 13 year old Peruvian Paso mare A broodmare and foal In English, a mare (an old Germanic word) is a female horse; the word is also an etymological root of marshal (originally marescalcus horse servant). Mares are considered easier to handle than males, which are called stallions or after castration...


When the herd is in motion, the stallion brings up the rear of the herd, keeping straggling herd members in line and serving as a "rear guard" between the herd and a potential source of danger. When the herd is at rest, all herd members share the responsibility of keeping watch for danger. The stallion usually is positioned on the edge of the herd, in order to defend the herd if needed.


In a herd or a group of horses, there is usually only one mature herd stallion. Both sexes of young horses are tolerated while young, but once they become sexually mature, the stallion will drive both colts and fillies from the herd. Colts may present competition for the stallion, but studies suggest that driving off young horses of both sexes may also be an instinctive behavior that also minimizes the risk of inbreeding within the herd. In some cases, a single younger mature male may be tolerated on the fringes of the herd. One theory is that this young stallion is considered a potential successor, even though the younger horse will eventually drive out the older herd stallion. A colt or filly with its mother A Colt is a young male horse, under the age of four. ... Filly is also a town in Belgium. ... The suckling of a newborn at its mothers nipple is an example of an instinctive behavior. ... It has been suggested that inbreeding depression be merged into this article or section. ...


Fillies usually soon join a different band, and colts or young stallions without mares of their own usually form "bachelor bands" in the wild. Living in a group gives these males the social and protective benefits of living in a herd. A bachelor herd may also contain older stallions who have lost their herd in a challenge.[1] Filly is also a town in Belgium. ... A colt or filly with its mother A Colt is a young male horse, under the age of four. ...


Other stallions may directly challenge a herd stallion, or may simply attempt to "steal" mares and form a new, smaller herd. In either case, if the two stallions meet there rarely is a true fight, more often there will be bluffing behavior and the weaker animal will back off. Even if a fight for dominance occurs, rarely do opponents hurt each other in the wild because the weaker animal has a chance to flee. However, fights between animals in captivity may result in serious injuries; fences and other forms of confinement make it more difficult for the weaker animal to safely escape. In the wild, feral stallions have been known to steal or mate with domesticated mares. A feral horse (an American mustang) in Wyoming A feral animal or plant is one that has escaped from domestication and returned, partly or wholly, to its wild state. ... There are a number of theories regarding the domestication of the horse. ...


Management and handling of domesticated stallions

See also: Horse breeding, Horse training, and Horse care
Even well-trained stallions require firm and consistent handling by experienced individuals.

Domesticated stallions are trained and managed in a variety of ways, depending on the region of the world, the philosophy of the owner, and the temperament of the individual stallion. In all cases, however, stallions have an inborn tendency to attempt to dominate both other horses and human handlers, and will be affected to some degree by proximity to other horses, especially mares in heat. They must be asked to behave with respect toward humans at all times or else their natural aggressiveness, particularly a tendency to bite, may pose a danger of serious injury.[2] Horse breeding is the process of using selective breeding to produce additional individuals of a given phenotype, that is, continuing a breed. ... WikiProject horse training is about methods of training horses, and all the related aspects of the relationship between people and horses. ... Laura knows far more about horses than Sarah ever will, ever. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1000x784, 145 KB) Etalon pur sang arabe pendant un représentation File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Arabian horse ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1000x784, 145 KB) Etalon pur sang arabe pendant un représentation File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Arabian horse ... Dogs and sheep were among the first animals to be domesticated. ... 13 year old Peruvian Paso mare A broodmare and foal In English, a mare (an old Germanic word) is a female horse; the word is also an etymological root of marshal (originally marescalcus horse servant). Mares are considered easier to handle than males, which are called stallions or after castration... Estrus (also spelled œstrus) or heat in female mammals is the period of greatest female sexual responsiveness usually coinciding with ovulation. ...


For this reason, regardless of management style, stallions must be treated as individuals and should only be handled by people who are experienced with horses and thus recognize and correct inappropriate behavior before it becomes a danger.[3] While some breeds are of a more gentle temperament than others, and individual stallions may be well-behaved enough to even be handled by inexperienced people for short periods of time, common sense must always be used. Even the most gentle stallion has natural instincts that may overcome human training. As a general rule, children should not handle stallions, particularly in a breeding environment. The suckling of a newborn at its mothers nipple is an example of an instinctive behavior. ...


Management of breeding stallions usually breaks down into one of two basic types: confinement or "isolation" management, and natural or "harem" management. Sometimes a stallion may periodically be managed in both systems, depending on season of the year. In some parts of the world, young domesticated stallions may be allowed to live separately in a "bachelor herd," out of sight, sound or smell from mares.


Natural management is essentially allowing a stallion to run in a pasture with a herd of mares. The advantage of this type of management is that the stallion is allowed to behave "like a horse" and may exhibit fewer stable vices. In addition, the mares may "cycle" or achieve estrus more readily. Proponents of natural management also assert that mares are more likely to "settle" (become pregnant) in a natural herd setting. Some stallion managers keep a stallion with a herd year-round, others will only turn a stallion out with mares during the breeding season.[4] Pastureland Pasture is land with lush herbaceous vegetation cover used for grazing of ungulates as part of a farm or ranch. ... Stable vices are bad habits that horses obtain, often as a result of being confined with insufficient exercise. ... Estrus (also spelled œstrus) or heat in female mammals is the period of greatest female sexual responsiveness usually coinciding with ovulation. ... A pregnant woman Pregnancy is the process by which a mammalian female carries a live offspring from conception until it develops to the point where the offspring is capable of living outside the womb. ...


There are drawbacks to natural management, however. One is that the breeding date, and hence foaling date, or a given mare will be uncertain. Another problem is the risk of injury to the stallion or mare in the process of natural breeding. Some stallions become very anxious or temperamental in a herd setting and may lose considerable weight, sometimes to the point of a health risk. Some may become more aggressive and dangerous to handle. There is also a greater risk that the stallion may escape from a pasture or be stolen. Stallions may break down fences between adjoining fields in order to fight another stallion, or possibly mate with the "wrong" herd of mares, thus putting the pedigree of ensuing foals in question.[5]


The other general method of managing stallions is to confine them individually, separately from other horses, sometimes in a small pen or corral with a tall fence, other times in a stable, or, in certain places, in a small field (or paddock) with a strong fence. The advantages to confinement include less of a risk of injury to the stallion or to other horses, controlled periods for breeding mares, greater certainty of what mares are bred when, less risk of escape or theft, and ease of access by humans. Some stallions are of such a temperament (or develop vicious behavior due to improper handling) that they must be confined and cannot be kept in a natural setting, either because they behave in a dangerous manner toward mares, or because they are dangerous to humans when loose. Leland Stanfords horse stable, still in use Horse kept in stable A stable is a building in which livestock, usually horses, are kept. ... Pastureland Pasture is land with lush herbaceous vegetation cover used for grazing of ungulates as part of a farm or ranch. ... Fence dividing paddocks. ...


The drawbacks to confinement vary by the actual method used, but lack of exercise can be a serious concern; stallions without sufficient exercise may not only become fat, which may reduce both health and fertility, but also may become aggressive or develop stable vices due to pent-up energy. If stallions are kept in complete isolation from other animals, they may develop additional behavior problems. Conversely, some stallions within sight or sound of other horses may become aggressive or noisy, calling or challenging other horses. In any case, stallions kept alone require careful balance of nutrition and exercise for optimal health and fertility. Stable vices are bad habits that horses obtain, often as a result of being confined with insufficient exercise. ... Grass is a natural source of nutrition for a horse Equine nutrition refers to the feeding of horses, ponies, mules, donkeys and other equids. ...


As a general rule, a stallion that has been isolated from the time of weaning or sexual maturity will have a more difficult time adapting to a herd environment than one allowed to live in close proximity to other animals.


Some managers attempt to compromise between the two methods by providing stallions daily turnout by themselves in a field where they can see, smell, and hear other horses. They may be stabled in a barn where there are bars or a grille between stalls where they can look out and see other animals. In some cases, a stallion may be kept with or next to a gelding or a non-horse companion animal such as a goat, gelded donkey, cat, or other creature. This article does not cite any references or sources. ... A gelding is a castrated animal—in English, a castrated male horse. ... Species See Species and subspecies The goat is a mammal in the genus Capra, which consists of nine species: the Ibex, the West Caucasian Tur, the East Caucasian Tur, the Markhor, and the Wild Goat. ... Binomial name Equus asinus Linnaeus, 1758 For other uses, see Donkey (disambiguation). ... Binomial name Felis catus Linnaeus, 1758 Synonyms Felis lybica invalid junior synonym The cat (or domestic cat, house cat) is a small carnivorous mammal. ...


Properly trained stallions can live and work in close proximity to mares and to one another. Examples include the Lipizzan stallions of the Spanish Riding School in Vienna, Austria, where the entire group of stallions live part-time in a bachelor herd as young colts, then are stabled, train, perform, and travel worldwide as adults with few if any management problems. However, even stallions who are unfamiliar with each other can work safely in reasonably close proximity if properly trained; the vast majority of Thoroughbred horses on the racetrack are stallions, as are many equine athletes in other forms of competition. Stallions are often shown together in the same ring at horse shows, particularly in halter classes where their conformation is evaluated. In horse show performance competition, stallions and mares often compete in the same arena with one another, particularly in Western and English "pleasure"-type classes where horses are worked as a group. Overall, stallions can be trained to keep focused on work and may be brilliant performers if properly handled.[6] A modern Lipizzan The Lipizzan, or Lipizzaner (Slovene Lipicanec), is a breed of horse closely associated with the Spanish Riding School of Vienna, Austria where the finest representatives demonstrate the high school movements of classical dressage, including the highly advanced airs above the ground. ... A Lipizzan horse in the Winter Riding School The Spanish Riding School of Vienna, Austria, is a traditional riding school for Lipizzan horses. ... “Wien” redirects here. ... A colt or filly with its mother A Colt is a young male horse, under the age of four. ... Thoroughbred race horses The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known as a race horse. ... Alternative use: Race track Racetrack is a pencil and paper game, nominally for two players. ... A horse show is a judged exhibition of horses and ponies. ... A horse being shown at halter Halter is a term used to describe a type of horse show class where horses are shown in hand, meaning that they are led, not ridden, and are judged on their conformation and suitability as breeding stock. ... See Equine conformation ... Western Pleasure is an equestrian show event that tests a the suitability of the horse for appropriate gait cadence and speed, along with suitable disposition traits. ... English pleasure is a class seen at horse shows, ridden in either hunt seat or, more often seen in the United States, saddle seat tack. ...


A breeding stallion is more apt to present challenging behavior to a human handler than one who has not bred mares, and stallions may be more difficult to handle in spring and summer, during the breeding season, than during the fall and winter. However, some stallions are used for both equestrian uses and for breeding at the same general time of year. Though compromises may need to be made in expectations for both athletic performance and fertility rate, well-trained stallions with good temperaments can be taught that breeding behavior is only allowed in a certain area, or with certain cues, equipment, or with a particular handler.[7][8] However, some stallions lack the temperament to focus on work if also breeding mares in the same general time period, and therefore are taken out of competition either temporarily or permanently to be used for breeding. When permitted by a breed registry, use of artificial insemination is another technique that may reduce behavior problems in stallions. Horse breeding is the process of using selective breeding to produce additional individuals of a given phenotype, that is, continuing a breed. ... A young rider at a horse show in Australia. ... Fertility is a measure of reproduction: the number of children born per couple, person or population. ... A breed registry, also known as a stud book or register, in animal husbandry and the hobby of animal fancy, is an official list of animals within a specific breed whose parents are known. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Cultural views of stallions

Attitudes toward stallions vary between different parts of the world. In some parts of the world, the practice of gelding is not widespread and stallions are common. In other places, most males are gelded and only a few stallions are kept as breeding stock. Horse breeders who produce purebred bloodstock often recommend that no more than the top 10 percent of all males be allowed to reproduce, in order to continually improve a given breed of horse. A gelding is a castrated animal—in English, a castrated male horse. ... Horse breeding is the process of using selective breeding to produce additional individuals of a given phenotype, that is, continuing a breed. ... Purebreds, also called purebreeds or pedigreed, are cultivated varieties or cultivars of a species, achieved through the process of selective breeding. ... // This page is a list of horse and pony breeds, and also includes terms used to describe types of horses that are not breeds but are commonly mistaken for breeds. ...


People sometimes have inaccurate beliefs about stallions, both positive and negative. Some beliefs are that stallions are always mean and vicious or uncontrollable, other beliefs are that misbehaving stallions should be allowed to misbehave because they are being "natural," "spirited," or "noble." In some cases, fed by movies and fictional depictions of horses in literature, some people believe that a stallion can bond to a single human individual to the exclusion of all others. However, like many other misconceptions, there is only partial truth to these beliefs. Some, though not all stallions can be vicious or hard to handle, occasionally due to genetics, but usually due to improper training. Others are very well-trained and have excellent manners. Misbehaving stallions may look pretty or be exhibiting instinctive behavior, but it can still become dangerous if not corrected. Some stallions do behave better for some people than others, but that can be true of some mares and geldings as well.


In some parts of Asia and the Middle East, the riding of stallions is widespread, especially among male riders. The gelding of stallions is unusual, viewed culturally as either unnecessary or unnatural. In areas where gelding is not widely practiced, stallions are still not needed in numbers as great as mares, and so many will be culled, either sold for horsemeat or simply sold to traders who will take them outside of the area. Of those that remain, many will not be used for breeding purposes. World map showing the location of Asia. ... A map showing countries commonly considered to be part of the Middle East The Middle East is a region comprising the lands around the southern and eastern parts of the Mediterranean Sea, a territory that extends from the eastern Mediterranean Sea to the Persian Gulf. ... Musculature of horse Horse meat is meat cut from a horse. ...


In Europe, Australia, and the Americas, keeping stallions is less common, primarily confined to purebred animals who are usually trained and placed into competition to test their quality as future breeding stock. The majority of stallions are gelded at an early age and then trained for use as everyday working or riding animals. World map showing the location of Europe. ... World map showing the Americas CIA political map of the Americas The Americas are the lands of the Western hemisphere or New World consisting of the continents of North America[1], Central America and South America with their associated islands and regions. ...


Geldings

Main article: Gelding

If a stallion is not to be used for breeding, gelding the male horse will allow it to live full-time in a herd with other horses, reduce aggressive or disruptive behavior, and allow the horse to be around other animals without being seriously distracted. If a horse is not to be used for breeding, it can be gelded prior to reaching sexual maturity and may behave better if this is done. However, older stallions who are sterile or otherwise no longer used for breeding may also be gelded and will exhibit calmer behavior, even if previously used for breeding. Modern surgical techniques allow castration to be performed on a horse of almost any age with relatively few risks. A gelding is a castrated animal—in English, a castrated male horse. ... Castration (also referred as: gelding, neutering, orchiectomy, orchidectomy, and oophorectomy) is any action, surgical, chemical, or otherwise, by which a male loses the functions of the testes or a female loses the functions of the ovaries. ...


Just as some pet owners may have conflicting emotions about neutering a male dog or cat, some stallion owners may be unsure about gelding a stallion. However, in most cases, particularly in modern industrialized cultures, an animal that is not of sufficient quality to be used for breeding will have a happier life without having to be isolated or constantly dealing with the instinctive, hormone-driven behaviors that come with being left intact. Geldings are safer to handle and present fewer management problems. They are also more widely accepted. Many boarding stables will refuse clients with stallions or charge considerably more money to keep them. Some types of equestrian activity, such as events involving children, or clubs that sponsor purely recreational events such as trail riding, may not permit stallions to participate. Neutering, from the Latin neÅ­ter (of neither type), is the removal of an animals reproductive organ, either all of it or a considerably large part of it. ... Trinomial name Canis lupus familiaris The dog (Canis lupus familiaris) is a domestic subspecies of the wolf, a mammal of the Canidae family of the order Carnivora. ... Binomial name Felis catus Linnaeus, 1758 Synonyms Felis lybica invalid junior synonym The cat (or domestic cat, house cat) is a small carnivorous mammal. ... A young rider at a horse show in Australia. ... Trail riding is riding on trails as opposed to riding on roads or courses. ...


See also

A gelding is a castrated animal—in English, a castrated male horse. ... 13 year old Peruvian Paso mare A broodmare and foal In English, a mare (an old Germanic word) is a female horse; the word is also an etymological root of marshal (originally marescalcus horse servant). Mares are considered easier to handle than males, which are called stallions or after castration... Horse breeding is the process of using selective breeding to produce additional individuals of a given phenotype, that is, continuing a breed. ... Horse behavior is best understood from the perspective that horses are prey animals with a well-developed fight-or-flight instinct. ...

References

  1. ^ "Gender Issues: Training Stallions" The Horse press release, online edition, June 29, 2007. Web site accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/viewarticle.aspx?ID=9881
  2. ^ "Gender Issues: Training Stallions" The Horse press release, online edition, June 29, 2007. Web site accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/viewarticle.aspx?ID=9881
  3. ^ Hatfield, Sandy. "Handle Stallions With Care." The Horse online edition. Web article accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=6343
  4. ^ Strickland, Charlene. "Return to Nature With Pasture Breeding" The Horse online edition, September 13, 2001. Web article accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=159&nID=5&n=Stallion Care and Problems&case=2
  5. ^ McDonnell, Sue. "Keeping Horses in Harems." The Horse online edition, web site accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=6283
  6. ^ Strickland, Charlene. "Males as Athletes," The Horse online edition. Web article accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=772&nID=5&n=Stallion Care and Problems&case=2
  7. ^ Mendell, Chad. "AAEP Convention 2005: Stallion Handling." The Horse online edition. Web site accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=6549
  8. ^ McDonnell, Sue. "Keeping Stallions Focused" The Horse online edition. Web article accessed July 5, 2007 at http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=8808

 
 

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