8 Steps for Breeding Your Mare

Are you planning to breed your mare? Learn how taking a systematic, step-by-step approach to managing each mare, in partnership with your veterinary team, can help cultivate success next spring.
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8 Steps for Breeding Your Mare
Before focusing on a mare's reproductive health, owners must first note her overall wellness. | Photo: iStock

Take a systematic approach to managing your broodmare to have the best chance at a successful pregnancy

Sperm, meet ovum. If breeding horses were as simple as that, we wouldn’t have an entire branch of the veterinary profession devoted to equine reproduction. Even in-heat mares and virile stallions don’t always a foal make. And if your broodmare herd includes a collection of maiden, older, and/or subfertile mares, you have even more to think about and keep track of to ensure a successful breeding season. Taking a systematic, step-by-step approach to managing each mare, in partnership with your veterinary team, can help cultivate success next spring.

Step 1: Consider the mare’s overall health

Margo Macpherson, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACT, a professor of Large Animal Clinical Sciences at the University of Florida’s College of Veterinary Medicine, in Gainesville, says there’s no one recipe for broodmare management; veterinarians must assess each mare individually.

Before focusing on a mare’s reproductive health, owners must first note her overall wellness. Does she appear healthy? Are her hooves in good shape? What vaccinations are due? Does she need a

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Sarah Evers Conrad has a bachelor’s of arts in journalism and equine science from Western Kentucky University. As a lifelong horse lover and equestrian, Conrad started her career at The Horse: Your Guide to Equine Health Care magazine. She has also worked for the United States Equestrian Federation as the managing editor of Equestrian magazine and director of e-communications and served as content manager/travel writer for a Caribbean travel agency. When she isn’t freelancing, Conrad spends her free time enjoying her family, reading, practicing photography, traveling, crocheting, and being around animals in her Lexington, Kentucky, home.

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