Spinoff: what gender combos, if you have multiple horses?

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Abby P

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So just theoretically if I were to get a second horse (totally theoretical :)), what does everyone think is the best choice for company for a youngish, playful but laid back gelding? I had my Arab gelding in several different herd settings in the years I owned him. In small herds of two or three he seemed to do best (in terms of lower anxiety levels) when there was a boss mare. He wasn't naturally a dominant type but would take over if he had to and then he'd be a total pain to deal with for me. But he was sort of sad when he was at the bottom under a highly dominant gelding - although more happy to come out and go somewhere different!

I can see benefits to another gelding (more playing), but I wonder if an older mare might be better company in some ways. It's a tough call because it's really, really hard to guess what will happen when you put two horses together. Curious what everyone thinks!
 

Kelly

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Gelding! Gelding! I ♥️ Geldings!! 💕💕

My biggie was NEVER EVER buddy sour until he got his “own” mare 😝 First time when I boarded they threw a mare out with about 8 geldings, drove all the boys mad! He would scream and scream when I took him away from her for walks or rides, which was so not like him. Maybe she was just a little hussy! 😍

Second time when I got myself a mare and he couldn’t live without her either, I guess she was a little hussy too🤣 He wasn’t as bad as he was with the first one but still, bad in my book…. Always had to have her in sight or he would throw a fit, which again wasn’t like him at all.

I’m not saying I wouldn’t ever own a mare again, I really liked my mare, she was full of sass and she was sooooo dramatic, loved her personality…but all my boys are just so even keel, non dramatic, loving, and definitely NOT buddy sour.

So my vote is GELDING!! 💕💕
 

MaryFlora

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No rhyme or reason, but I have 4 mares and 1 gelding. 😁 They’ve never been bred and have been with me now about 15 years or so.

They get along well and have never been sour going out alone. I’m not sure if that is just luck or if the mares are just independent enough. Plus with 5 no one is left alone in the paddock or barn.
 

Abby P

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Thanks everyone! I do feel like mares, at least the ones I have known, are a bit more independent than geldings when it comes to being left behind. My Arab would be fine to go out alone but if you left him behind he was a mess (luckily, not a good jumper :)). The mares seemed to care very little, but maybe they were just glad to get a break from him, he was a little bit of a pain. ;)

But then I also feel like maybe a mare wouldn't encourage as much playing and moving around as another gelding. My gelding used to run around with the mares he lived with but they never really played.
 

Dragon Hill

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Unfortunately, it depends on what gelding or what mare. Although I do like boys with boys, and girls with girls, it really depends on the individual's personality. If you go with a mare, I'd go with older than him, but not a senior. But a gelding if you want him to have a playmate.
 

HersheyMint

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This is so interesting to read, everyone's experience. I had 2 large horses. I had my gelding , Arabian and then years later I got my mare a Morgan, once I had my own place. The mare was one to follow before I got her. She was dominate over my gelding though. He was always pretty mellow. Each one was fine going out alone.
Now with my minis I have a mare and gelding again. The gelding, Hershey is the dominate one.
 

chandab

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I have enough horses now, and do a little breeding now and then, so I keep my genders separate for the most part. I have a gelding herd, a mare herd, a small mixed group (mare, stallion and jenny) and a single stallion (housed next to the mare paddock).
Geldings can become very possessive of mares, so it was just easier to keep the geldings separate, and then it gives me a paddock for colts to wean and grown up while waiting to geld (they've all had their jewels down at birth, but I give them a little time to mature before gelding to see if they are worthy of staying a stallion or not, usually ends up not, as I don't need/want more stallions, but if one were spectacular I'd consider it).
 

maewest4u

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Gelding! Gelding! I ♥ Geldings!! 💕💕

My biggie was NEVER EVER buddy sour until he got his “own” mare 😝 First time when I boarded they threw a mare out with about 8 geldings, drove all the boys mad! He would scream and scream when I took him away from her for walks or rides, which was so not like him. Maybe she was just a little hussy! 😍

Second time when I got myself a mare and he couldn’t live without her either, I guess she was a little hussy too🤣 He wasn’t as bad as he was with the first one but still, bad in my book…. Always had to have her in sight or he would throw a fit, which again wasn’t like him at all.

I’m not saying I wouldn’t ever own a mare again, I really liked my mare, she was full of sass and she was sooooo dramatic, loved her personality…but all my boys are just so even keel, non dramatic, loving, and definitely NOT buddy sour.

So my vote is GELDING!! 💕💕
I agree! I have two gelding 1/2 brothers just a few weeks apart in age. They are best friends and act like little stallions the way they play. 4 year olds now. Been together since birth
 

LostandFound

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Currently I have one stallion and one mare, which is a big pain in the rear. I prefer mares to geldings in general, but if you want a playmate, gelding in the way to go. For the most part, anyway. Horses have their own personalities and they act different with each new place and pasture mate. You really never know when you introduce a friend.
 

Marsha Cassada

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Also depends on ages. Dapper Dan and Midnight do not rear and fight each other, but they run around a lot. Dapper Dan will hide from Midnight; she cries and hunts for him, and then he nonchalantly strolls out of his hiding place. Midnight might play more if Dapper Dan were more her age, but personally I can do without the rearing and squealing and kicking.
 
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I'll state what we have...but don't read anything into it! LOL It's simply because that's how we started...

We have 2 geldings. They are half-brothers born 2 weeks apart. We got them when they were 6 mos old. I had them gelded later when the vet advised.

they are just like human siblings. They will pick on each other, and Pete is the alpha.
But, when I take one of them away to train or go driving...The one left behind will CRY and CRY. doesn't matter which one.

my boys have lots of 'fence buddies' that are big horses and mules. (we call them the 'big boys') about 7 total. they all play with each other across the fence. Its fun to watch.

When we go do the parades and fairs, our two boys to FANTASTIC with all the other horses and people and kids.

I'm definitely a gelding fan based of of my two's experience. :)
 

Willow Flats

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I have two geldings that live in harmony. I keep my mare separated because she picks fights. She did this when I had only the one gelding and they were together. She will still occasionally kick at one of them through the fence, but she is just a bossy mare.

I had another mare in the past that got on really well with my geldings as she was really sweet. She was given to me to be a companion when I had only one gelding and 5 years later I gave her to a woman who's minis companion died to be a companion to her gelding.

There is never a guarantee on how horses will get along and certainly in the beginning they need to sort things out even if it's just subtle leadership, but I think it helps to know something about the new horse's personality or how it fit into their last herd if possible. Again, no guarantee.

When I met Annie and her owner stepped off the trailer with her Annie drug her all the way to me, there was not only a lack of training but I could tell she had plenty of attitude right away, but I liked her height and build for driving so I took her in and she is now a great driving horse, but I would never tell someone she'd make a great companion!
 

Cayuse

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I jump a mile Every. Single. Time. I hear a "mare squeal" or as I call it with my boys, "alpha squeals". After 50 years of being around horses you'd think I'd be used to it but even when I see it coming, nope, I hit the ceiling 🙃
 

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