Breeding a show pony

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Breeding a top show pony can be an exciting experience. There are many show pony stallions at stud for you to choose from; choosing the right pony stallion can make the difference between a mediocre foal and a top-quality show pony. Careful planning can help you make the right decision when choosing between the many pony stallions available.

Think About the End Result

Before you begin the breeding process, think carefully about what type of foal you are looking for. Do you have a specific competition discipline in mind for the foal? If so, then think about what physical characteristics will be desirable – and more importantly, which characteristics will not. If you’re looking for a more finely boned, refined appearance, make sure that the physical build of the mare and the pony stallion you choose can lend to the correct traits for the foal.

Height is always an important characteristic when breeding a show pony. If you are breeding a tall mare and a tall pony stallion; the result could be a pony which is too tall for your desired show division, or too tall to qualify as a pony at all.

Take temperament into consideration, too. Are you looking for a calm, confident pony which could build show ring experience for young riders? Or are you looking for a more fiery, showy pony to put on a flashy appearance in the show ring? The mare’s temperament will have an effect on the foals, but so will the pony stallion’s. Choose a stallion with a temperament which will complement the mare’s to have your best chance at getting a foal with the character you desire.

Evaluate Your Mare

Take a good hard look at your mare’s physical strengths and her weaknesses. What qualities are you looking to reproduce in a foal? What qualities would you like to improve? If your mare has many poor qualities that you would not want to see reflected in a foal, then consider using a different mare for breeding.

You should only breed a mare if she has many great qualities; her few weaknesses may be overcome by selectively choosing a pony stallion.

Critique the Stallion

In looking at pony stallions at stud, think about the characteristics that each stallion could give to the foal. The stallion should have strengths in the areas that the mare is lacking; hopefully he will improve the foal’s quality in those areas. Take all of the stallion’s characteristics into consideration.

It’s also best to evaluate the show pony stallions based on their previous offspring. What are a stallion’s foals like? How is their conformation and movement? Their temperament? Trainability? Evaluating a stallion’s previous offspring can give you a good sense of how his future offspring are likely to be.

Get Professional Assistance

If you’re new to breeding show ponies, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Find a trusted friend who has experience in breeding show ponies and ask for their opinions when you’re looking at show pony stallions at stud. It’s important to find the right pony stallion, and a friend who has an experienced eye can help keep you from making a very expensive mistake. Your veterinarian may also be able to help you evaluate and critique your mare, and from a medical standpoint your veterinarian may have additional information to offer you about your mare and the potential pony stallions.

Take your time in selecting a pony stallion, and make sure that you use the best stallion AND mare that you can afford. With a little bit of luck thrown in, you could breed a top quality show pony.

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