Mares or Geldings?

In the future, hopefully sometime this year, I will be getting another I am wondering what your preferences are? Currently I have, and am partial to geldings mostly because of their non-witchyness and because they don't have a "time of the month" lol. I plan to get a draft or draft cross. I know that generally speaking, draft breeds tend to be pretty easy-going so I don't know if a mare or gelding would really make much of a difference in that sense (other than the obvious gender characteristics)... Would an easy-going draft attitude help to mellow out a witchy mare attitude? I know all horses are different and unpredictable but I am just looking for some preferences, opinions and advise. Thanks!! :happy:


  • hoyalawya2003
    hoyalawya2003 Posts: 631 Member
    I prefer geldings, too (although my favorite horse so far was a stallion that I trained years ago, but that is another story). When I am finally in the market again, I would consider a really good mare, too. I think for most mares the witchyness isn't that hard to ignore/overcome. So I guess my vote is, it doesn't really matter much, but if it came down to two equally good prospects I would lean gelding. I have zero experience with draft horses other than riding one years ago in a few lessons, so no help there.

    Good luck! :smile: And I am insanely jealous that you get to buy another horse. I am currently on a campaign to talk my husband into one, and it'll probably take another year or two.
  • Thanks for the input!! A well behaved horse is a well behaved horse, whether mare, gelding or stallion...but I always lean towards what I am familiar with, which is geldings... In general, I tend to prefer male girl cat is mean and the boy is so much more friendly (both are fixed)...maybe it's me lol!

    I hope you get your horse sooner rather than later!! Do you have a horse to ride now, like a friends or lessons or anything?

    I initially got my first horse almost 2 years ago to keep me out of my husband's hair while he was putting in countless hours studying in pharmacy school...I was bored to tears and needed a hobby (probably should have been the gym, but horses are more fun lol). My second horse is going to be my gift when my husband graduates pharmacy school in May this year (yes, I worded that right...I get a gift lol) because it has been a really hard 6 years and I think I deserve a gift!
  • hoyalawya2003
    hoyalawya2003 Posts: 631 Member
    Absolutely you deserve a gift for putting up with it! And horseback riding (and horse care in general) is great exercise!

    I am taking lessons now and learning to jump, which is something I have dreamed of doing for years. I hope that once I get a couple of student loans paid off (which I am on track to do by next year), I can justify it to my husband. I sold my horse after we bought a house and before I got pregnant with our first--I took a 7 year hiatus and just started back in October. It actually is motivating me to get in better shape, so I have started running (well, realllly slooow jogging) and some strength training.

    If that is your first horse in your avatar, he is beautiful. Belgian? And ITA about male animals--two of my female cats are impossible to put up with. I am trying to talk my sister into trading one for her (male) dog.
  • bloodhoundlady
    bloodhoundlady Posts: 80 Member
    I have always been partial to mares. I have owned 3 in my life time. I do have a gelding my daughter rides who is very sweet but my mare classy we have a wonderful bond. I think mares are harder to gain their trust but once you do they are very protective. My mare only once since I have her going on 3 years I noticed a witchy mood. It was only because there was a new horse in the barn who was proud cut and he attempted to go after her. Classy is a very well behaved trained horse and maybe that is the key.
  • Hoyalawya2003:

    That's good you at least have lessons to get your horse fix!! Horseback riding is definitely motivation to lose weight and get in's hard work, although many think you "just sit there"...SO not true lol!

    Yes, the horse in the pics is my current horse, his name is Tank lol (I didn't name him). Short version of Tank's long story is: he was actually a stray horse. He came from one of the neighbors house to another and was skin and bones when he showed up. Neighbor number 1 refused to take him back so neighbor #2 kept him and put weight back on him, etc...a few years later I got to know neighbor #2 and bought him from her bc she has a bunch of other horses and was looking to sell him (she is an OTTB fan and had 4). I still board him with her and I have made an awesome friend and riding buddy! Anywhoo...he is believed to be a Belgian cross...he is short though, maybe 15.1 on a good day...some say maybe a Belgian/Haffie cross. He has a brand that I have desperately tried to track with no success... Whatever he is, I don't care...I love him and he will never be starved again...


    Thank you for the pro-mare input! I do agree that the training is key... I have ridden mares that were a dream and geldings that were jerks... I am just scared to stray from what I know in fear not liking a mare as much as a gelding... Ugh, decisions lol!
  • bloodhoundlady
    bloodhoundlady Posts: 80 Member
    Go for the best horse you can afford regardless of their sex.
  • epiphany29
    epiphany29 Posts: 122 Member
    I prefer geldings but agree, that you are looking for a well behaved horse that can do the job you want him to do safely.

    Geldings and dogs are my preference over mares and cats if that give you an idea of what I see as the main differences.

    My mare used to make me trek out to her in the pasture. My gelding notices a human and makes his way to them (I'm not deluded that he loves me yet). He's a busy body and into your business as much as he can be, but I like that over the disinterested, will walk away personality.

  • horsehelpnow
    horsehelpnow Posts: 35 Member
    I prefer mares. I have owned both in many breeds including draft. I bought my shires as 4 month olds a mare and a stallion. The stallion was immediately my favorite the mare came off the trailer kicking. As they grew up it was apparent that the mare just had a bad day. I had over 30 horses when they were ready to start riding and i had not put any ground training into her. The first day i hopped on her she was fine. I took her on a trail ride that same day. She was steady and even key everyday I owned her. She was unflappable non mareish. I had to sell her due to a divorce and lost track of her. I pulled into a ranch several years later and there she was. She is now 23 and just as sweet as she was when she was 3yrs old. All the beginners and kids ride her.
  • AnnaZimm70
    AnnaZimm70 Posts: 218 Member
    I had geldings originally -- first two horses growing up -- and loved them. I would have said I wanted another gelding. Life happened, and I now have two mares. They are both wonderful and I have no complaints about their attitudes. I think it depends more on the horse itself then the sex.
  • Guinness80
    Guinness80 Posts: 39 Member
    Do you have a pic of his brand? He may be pure haffie - they being bred taller more often now. My very first horse was a haffie. What a mischief maker!

    As to geldings or mare - it really depends on the horse. In the past I typically had all geldings. Then last year we got our TB mare Piper - you couldn't ask for a more even tempered horse. Don't get me wrong - I adore my mustang gelding and my husband loves his draft cross gelding, but Piper is a horse we can toss pure beginners on no matter if she is in heat or not and she will take care of them.

    Now not only do we have Piper, we also have several pony/mini mares and suddenly we have more mares than geldings in our pastures. Still not sure how it happened.
  • luckypony71
    luckypony71 Posts: 399 Member

    I have 2 geldings and a pony mare, but the best horse I owned was a little cracker horse mare. She was honest. If she was in a bad mood you knew it. She would carry me anywhere. She was great with the kids and extremely patient.

    My geldings are both intelligent and mellow to an extent. Chico has a wicked sense of humor though. Sometimes it comes out while I am riding. Scout will do anything as long as there are treats involved. He is also very brave. Even with all that I still love the honesty from my old mare.
  • MissMissle
    MissMissle Posts: 293 Member
    No that I own a mare, i would never, ever, ever get a gelding again! They will truly give you the world.
  • thelitas
    thelitas Posts: 18
    Every horse is different. After a number of cantankerous geldings as a kid, I swore I'd never own anything but a mare because the mares I rode were far better than the geldings and would give me everything they could, except for my last mare, and we were oil and water (she loves her current person and gives them everything, so it was the combination of her and me, not her). In 2010 fate held a different set of cards and the most textbook perfect gelding personality entered my life and I can't even imagine why I put up with the mare I had before him for so long.

    I will say the one thing I don't like about my current gelding is he doesn't complain, so when he finally gets to a point where he feels sore from working or doesn't understand something and can't take it anymore, he blows up BIG, where a mare or stallion isn't afraid to voice an opinion about work.