So you want to breed your mare: Can you afford it?

Breeding horses, when done properly, is expensive. The reason there are some many ‘worthless’ horse’s in the UK is that many people breed horses the cheap and easy way, often resulting in poor quality offspring. But this post isn’t about what to consider when putting a mare in foal (read about considerations here), this is about giving you a rough idea of how much it would cost.

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Pre-Breeding
~ reproductive examination. £120
~ venereal disease swabs (CEM, EVA, EIA). £120

Stud Fee
~ a sports horse stallion tends to cost between £500-£1000.
~ However, there could be different terms and different methods (frozen, chilled, fresh, natural covering.)
~ Can be extra fees if shipping from outside the UK
~ Depending on type of semen, will need to pay for a vet or AI technician. Could be up to £375

Foal Costs
~ mare and foal vet check after birth. £80
~ passporting and other breed registration. £200
~ castration. £150
~ three years of up keep. £4500

Other Costs
(These will be determined on how you manage your mare. Will she stay where she is or go to stud? What type of feed? Is feed included in livery? ect)
~ mare up keep for the year. £1000
~ stud feed. £200
~ mare livery for foaling. £400
~ autumn pregnancy diagnosis. £80

If you choose a cheap stallion and keep your mare at your own yard throughout the process and keep the foal until it is three years of age, you’re rough total will be: £7070.

If you choose a better stallion, need more help from stud livery or if anything goes wrong, your costs will be considerably higher. It is also important to mention that very few insurance companies will touch foals.

So, if you really are considering breeding your next riding horse, please make sure you can afford the likely minimum cost of £7000 and be prepared to lose a lot, if not all of this money as so much can go wrong! If this rough cost has made you question breeding your mare, please consider adopting or rescuing one of the hundreds of horses which need homes. Many of them are perfectly capable of performing most riding club level activities.

Many of the numbers used in this post are from/adapted from Horse & Hound.

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