Not so long ago, you needed to have a licence to keep a stallion in the UK and if a stallion/colt didn’t have a license by a certain age, they had to be gelded. With the UK currently over populated with poor quality horses, maybe this is something which needs to be considered.
I personally think that people should need a license to breed (and own) any animal in the UK. This would prevent many welfare issues which stem from owners being able to breed their animals no matter their genetic merit.
Another hate of mine is people keeping their stallions entire when they have no intention to breed or have no worth as a breeding animal. Many yards do not have the facilities to have stallions, which is therefore asking for trouble. If a similar license was introduced where stallions had to be gelded if requirements were not met, there would be less cases of accidental foals.
Any introduction of breeding licenses or law changes would be hard to set up and enforce. However, I really think they would make a huge difference to many of the welfare problems in the UK.
What do you think about the idea of breeding licenses?
Last Updated on 07/08/2018
It is a quandary as stallions do make the finest of mounts IF they are properly trained, regardless of whether or not the rider intends to breed them. There is also the question of proving a stallion under saddle before ever breeding them to consider. Perhaps offering free/low cost gelding clinics as is gaining popularity here in the USA would help reduce the ‘accidental’ breeding problem.
Can’t say I entirely agree, saraannon. Whilst Totilas is, undoubtedly, an exceptional horse and a stallion… Valegro is also as impressive and is a gelding. I firmly believe Totilas would have been as successful had he been a gelding. Too many posts online of people worried because they’ve got a ‘BOGOFF’ with their new horse or pony. Time to take some responsibility and breed ONLY when there is a need for it!
What you regard as a need to breed and how some one else might see their need to breed may well differ. We also don’t know what Valegro would have been like as a stallion and Totilas has health problems that perhaps should not be passed to future generations. Banning stallions from riding stables because of overbreeding by commercial breeders and/or the propensity of amateur horse owners to be surprised by their pets reproductive capacity might not be the most effective approach to the problem and can be a great disservice to those who are willing and capable of handling stallions under saddle and in their barns. Education and options for the human side of the equation nearly always benefits the horse
I didn’t mean that stallions shouldn’t be allowed at riding and lesure stables, just that many of them do not allow stallions because they do not have the fencing or facilities to keep mares and stallions away from each other. This has nothing to do with the stallions owner or behavior, purely just the yard set up.
I also believe that stallions and breeding should have some stronger controls, whether it be licencing, better training (of the humans) or something else. I don’t necessarily believe that all stallions should be gelded if they’re not going to be bred from, I’ve known some lovely stallions on leisure yards that you wouldn’t have known were stallions from their behavior. Though I will agree that a lot of livery yards in the UK don’t have the facilities or trained staff to cope with stallions.