Breeding

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Good nutrition throughout pregnancy is essential to the health of both mare and foal. Adjust your broodmare’s diet as gestation progresses to meet her changing nutrient needs.

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Traditionally, horse breeders look to the stallion for pedigree lines to produce the superior performance offspring with the desired characteristics of speed, conformation, and health. But the lineage of mares plays an equally important role not only in the genetic quality of the foal but potentially in the breeder’s selection for fillies or colts. In addition, a mare’s maternal heritage influences the length of gestation.

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When to Watch - When to Act - Ask anyone who has bred horses, and they’ll tell you it’s no easy feat. However, when it is done properly (and everything goes right), having an energetic and healthy foal is an exciting and rewarding experience. Dr. Stephen Manning is a board-certified theriogenologist and an associate professor at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

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Q: I have a new stallion that I hope to offer cooled and frozen semen from. What do I need to do to prepare him for collection? A: Starting a stallion is perhaps the most important aspect of breeding management.

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