Victory for Victory- and some thoughts about stallions

Victory

Victory

Back in February, we posted regarding an 18-year old stallion named Victory who was in need of a home.  Today, we are pleased to report that Victory has indeed found his forever home. This is due largely to the efforts of a caring friend (not his original owner), who provides us with a great example of how to do a few basic things very well.  Our advice is as follows:

1. Be patient. Stallions can be hard to find good homes for. Note that we said “good” homes. Bad homes are a lot easier. Be in this for the long haul. Don’t get discouraged. Keep knocking on those doors.

Was a friendly stallion, now a friendly gelding needing a home.

Cherokee was a friendly stallion and is now a friendly gelding needing a home.

2 Cast a wide net. Talk to your friends, family, rescues, people in the breed clubs and industry and anyone else who might know someone who knows someone. Often reaching the right person is a matter of exposure, persistence and just blind, dumb luck.

3. Consider gelding your boy.  A nice stallion will make a nice gelding. A poorly handled stallion may be easier to train if he’s not busy checking out all the neighboring mares while you are trying to work with him. If your guy is very senior, you may want to check his testosterone levels before doing this.  He may not need to be gelded at all.

4. If he is not well-behaved, straighten him out! We’d give the owner of any horse the same advice, but given the trepidation that many people have about stallions, this is especially important. If you care about him, invest some time in training him. If this is outside of your skill level, find someone who can. The idea is to make him attractive to a new home and he won’t be if he is badly behaved.

Murphy in stallion mode, injured and preparing for combat

Murphy in stallion mode, injured and preparing for combat

Stallions are not all the fire-breathing, nail spitting dragons that people often believe them to be. If they are well-socialized and handled, they may differ from geldings only in their interest in the girls and their behavior in herds. Many are routinely ridden and continue to be good equine citizens. When considering adopting a stallion or a recent gelding, you will want to consider the individual. Is he disrespectful of people? Does he challenge other horses, especially geldings? Does he respect fences or is he the neighborhood Romeo?  He can be badly injured trying to cross barbed wire and your neighbors won’t appreciate his friendly visits. Most important: do you have mares that can be accidentally bred? If the answer to any of these is yes, you will make everyone’s lives easier by gelding him.

Murphy as a gelding, relaxed, happy and ready for a new home.

Murphy as a gelding, relaxed, happy and ready for a new home.

Most rescues will not adopt out intact boys.  This is because there are already too many homeless horses out there and frankly, we don’t really want to see some of these genes perpetuated, no matter how well the horses are pedigreed. The fact that these guys have all their parts does not entitle them to progeny.  But we often advertise intact horses for owners who can no longer keep them. And we are acutely aware of the fact that finding homes for stallions is difficult, due to some of the misconceptions that are out there. So we’d like to respectfully suggest that, before you turn away a horse needing a home simply because he is a stallion, take a second look at the individual. Many of these horses are good boys and solid citizens. If so, they will be good boys and solid citizens as geldings, for about what it costs for a month’s expenses.  Some seniors may not require gelding at all. Let’s give ’em a chance.

 

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