We have a mare and stallion together in a pasture. We borrowed a stallion in August just to breed this mare. They have been together since then, and we just had the mare checked for the first time since they were together and found out that the mare is pregnant. Of course, we can’t be sure when the foal is due.

We also just learned that the stallion’s owner needs to find a home for the stallion. He has asked us to keep the stallion here as long as we can or until someone else needs to borrow him or can give him a home. He’s a really nice old stallion, and we are trying to figure out how that would work out. We only have one pasture right now, and we are wondering how much longer the stallion can stay in the same pasture with our mare now that she is pregnant. We don’t have a barn or area where we can put him for a few months. Since we don’t know for sure when she is due, when is the best time to separate them? How soon could we put him back?

We were also wondering what you think would happen if the stallion was still there when the foal is born? The two have gotten along really well all this time. From the first day, the stallion wouldn’t let her out of his sight. He is very protective, but not at all vicious with her. Do you know if that will change when she has her foal? Do you think the stallion would hurt the foal? Helen

From your description, you can expect to have no problems just keeping this pair and their foal together indefinitely. The horses will probably do just fine. Horses have evolved to have the stallions present when the foals are born. Stallions under natural conditions appear to be very respectful and “kind” to foals. I have seen domestic horses such as yours do very well when the stallion stays with a mare that was pasture bred. In fact, you rarely hear of a problem. And it often has more to do with management issues rather than behavior.