The few we have in the upper twenties are retired part time and used as sitters for the weaners in the fall and over the winter months in a seperate paddock from the others and they seem to enjoy life in the fields with everyone else the rest of the year.
But the old bags still trot and get the required amount of exercise along with the younger ones each day on there own or forced.
We have a old mare and we are retiring her from being a brood mare. Glory had a colt this year that we named Grand Finale. She will live out her life here on the farm with love and the best of care. We love her dearly
I just gave away and delivered two mares today, to a neighbor with kids that just want pets. One's a mare that I bought at a sale a few months ago, I didn't think she walked right in the ring but my friend said she thought she was just nervous with the footing so I bought her, mistake, theres something wrong with her back and my vet has said she shouldn't be bred, which I already knew, I called the former owners and they acted just stupid and clueless. But we all know one horse can't go alone so I gave her my old Renee, who's a very nice double reg mare but in the 3 yrs that I've had her, she's never foaled. I thought they'd get more attention and Trina could give them a good home so instead of taking them back to an auction and dumping them, I gave them to Trina and made some little kids very happy, I feel good about it too. I have plenty of old mares here yet, they can stay unless I find a perfect home.
I have only retired one mare and she wasn't what I consider old, only 16. But she just wasn't making a good broodmare so she is now in a wonderful home with small children that love to brush her and give her attention. I keep in touch with them and they have actually taken another retired mini mare to keep the first one company when they are gone to shows with their big horses, (no the big horses are pastured with the minis, just share a fence).
My 24 year old Argentina Falabella Mulita will live out her life here with her last foal Annie who is now 7 years old....That sounds like a nice way to retire...she makes a wonderful Nanny..and still will take the herd for a wonderful run and still looks like a Tennessee Walking horse when she trots..
Her sire Napoleon lived to be in his 40's and I hope she does also...
I could never part with a old mare just because she quit reproducing. She would live her life out to its fullest with the best of care I could provide, and be smothered with attention and love from not only me but all the kids who always seem to be around the minis, they would also be GRAMMA horse to my foals. I have a 35 yr old Arabian, who my 11 month old zedonk just adopted as his MOTHER, only problem is my arabian is a gelding!! Zeebo follows Nazarian everywhere just like it was a foal of his...and he is perfect with him. I love the old ones just as much as the young ones. Corinne
We recently bought a bigger place (not on it yet, needs a barn and house and fencing, etc) so now I will be able to keep my mares when they retire. I've not had any old ones before now, I had always bought very young mares, for the most part, but last year I got a 20 year old mare (who foaled this spring) and my original mares, bought as youngsters, will have forever homes with me.
We have a wonderful "old lady" who is 23 years old. She has had two fillies for us since we bought her last year. She is the most gentle, wonderful mother, and grandma you could ever want. We have bred her back as she is in excellent good health, still runs up and down the hills with the rest of the herd. She is truely a treasure, and when she retires, will always have a home with us. We think she is an amazing genetic source because her breeding goes back to the Hemlock Brooks line, and her sire was Del Teras Apache.
Ours retire here. In fact we'll resemble a retirement home in a few more years as we'll have one stallion and five+ mares being retired.
I wouldn't be against finding a long term free lease to a qualified home, but the people I've all spoken to about this want to have them for their kids (some as young as 1-2 years) to learn on until they can get a big horse, etc., so until the perfect place comes along, they'll be here!
I do know of some breeders that routinely sell all horses that reach 10-12 years of age. This way the horses are still young enough to be very productive for years, but they won't be retiring a bunch, sending to auction, etc.
My older mares are born and die here. If they stopped breeding early , or for a health reason, I might think differently, and I do occasionally sell a young mare- I have just sold a five year old with foal at foot and I am suffering withdrawal- I have NEVER done that before
I have two mares I bred, 22 and 19 respectively, that I am pretty sure have finished. Clary is also OLD suddenly- if she does not pick up I shall have her PTS- those are my only options, I cannot see how she could possibly get better care than she is getting- she was born here, she has never been off the field, I honestly doubt she would settle and she is not a particularly people orientated mare, anyway.
Hard though it is no horse of mine was ever hurt by dying in the arms into which they were born.
As long as I can properly care for them ours will stay here. One option I keep open is if I stumbled onto a home where I feel they could get BETTER care and more attention than I can give them. We have a 30 year old full sized Appy mare that will stay here till she breathes her last. She was my daughter's best friend and we owe her. We bought her as an aged mare and have had her for 10 years.