Desperately need advice for my gelding who is acting like a stallion?

I’m very new to this so I wasn’t quite sure where to post this, but here is my issue:

I’ve had my gelding who is a 13 yo TB for six years. During those six years I boarded him at a farm where he rarely had any contact whatsoever with mares.

About a week and a half ago, I moved my gelding to a new farm that’s more suitable for me. However, he now has mares in the field right next to him and in stalls close by.

I moved him on a Thursday and went on Saturday to ride him. He was an absolute angel while I tacked up and rode, as he usually is. I then went to ride him again the next day on Sunday, and he was going crazy over the mares. He was running along the fence neighing to them when I went to get him, and he was covered in sweat. I brought him in the barn and he went crazy. He neighed to the mares, paced, and finally broke off of the crossties and out of his halter and was acting very aggressively. I decided not to ride and put him in a field where he couldn’t see the mares.

I’ve attempted to ride him a couple of times since then and he keeps acting the same way, even though he isn’t as close to the mares. I haven’t ridden him since that one Saturday because I’ve gone out alone and I don’t want to get injured and not have someone there to help me.

I don’t know what to do and I don’t want to have to leave this new farm! Can someone please give me ideas as to how to fix this? Thank you so much in advance!

I can’t offer and real advice but I have a 16 year old tb who kind of does the same thing, he drops every time he’s near mares so I just do my best to make sure he isn’t turned out near mares and isn’t stalled next to them. Ive never had a problem with riding him around mares though.

Can he be moved away from the mares, at least until a less hormonal time of year?

COTHers are notorious for saying, “Call the vet!”

In this case, I think I’ll be the first to go for it: Call your vet. It’s always possible your horse wasn’t as gelded as you thought. Particularly if you haven’t seen him around mares much in the past.

If the horse doesn’t have some remnant of manliness squirelled away, ask about chemical help. I think Depo is often recommended for those geldings, isn’t it?

If a horse you were 100% comfortable with a week ago is suddenly too dangerous to handle alone, I don’t think I’d waste a lot of time fiddling around with the vitamins and minerals and herbs and berries. (And I’m open to all of the above.)

It wouldn’t hurt to get him hormone tested to rule out any remnants before trying behavioral modification. If he was gelded late or used for breeding at some point, it may have a behavioral component. But worth it to rule out medical before frustrating yourself with behavior stuff when it’s medical underneath it all and you make no headway.

I had this happen when I moved my gelding and had to stay a week at a friend’s place, before a stall opened up with my trainer. He was with 2 other geldings and a mare. OMG did the stud like behavior come out. We actually had to give him a 1/2 cc of ace as he was breaking the stall door down. Totally uncharacteristic. I had labs done and they were negative. It was just a blip, accompanied by being turned out all together :eek:

Is there not anyone at the barn who can help you? no experienced horse person?

This is obviously not something that you can handle safely on your own, and not really an issue that can be solved by advice from afar.

If there is a COTHer near the OP, perhaps some advice on local help is in order.

Be careful OP. Since you are on your own with this horse, you are wise not to ride him.
Until you find an experienced person to look at the situation and determine if your gelding is actually improperly gelded (unlikely) or, is over excited, and taking advantage of your inexperience with randy geldings (more likely), please be careful. :yes:

The horses at my barn go out in a mixed herd and I’ve never had this problem. Is it possible he’s proud cut or was maybe gelded very late? I agree with finding someone who can help you. Even stallions have to behave when worked near mares.

Thank you for your input :slight_smile: looks like I’ll be calling the vet!

Ditto having the vet draw a little blood and check the testosterone level…could be a ridgling. I once owned a suspected ridgling - he had to mark EVERYONE’s poop & pee in the field, ring, etc. He was pretty well behaved most of the time and respectful of the stallion shank.

My current gelding is a beefy hunk of boy who wasn’t cut until he was 6. He gets confused, thinks he’s still got the equipment…he can be a handful and he WILL throw his considerable size around. I’m too old for nonsense and regularly handle him with the stallion shank. BUT he’s pretty well behaved.

As someone said already - you are wise not to get on when your boy is wound up like this. Find someone close by who is REPUTABLE & LEGIT to help you. The wrong person can make this worse. Best of luck as you work this out. Be safe!

I dunno, my vets all say they have done hundreds of tests and found only a handful of hormonal problems from improper or late castration.

Most of those issues are training related and lack of ground manners. Most geldings will smell and notice a mare showing hard in close by but do as expected and trained if properly handled.

Some use Depo on geldings that still seem too interested but that won’t replace good training.

I think this is just a management/training issue. This doesn’t sound like overly studdish behaviour. If he was proud cut he’d be doing more than screaming and pacing the fence shared with the mares. :wink:

I would move him away from the mares, until hormones settle down as spring winds down. He’ll probably be loopy for a while; just do your best to refocus his attention on you and he’ll come back to Earth.

Try putting some Vick’s Vapor Rub on the inside of his nostrils. Sometimes this helps the stallions not react to the mares because they can’t smell them.

It’s something easy and cheap to try and see if it makes a difference.

We had a stallion that we used it on when he was breeding a lot of mares in the spring. It allowed him to stay focused on the riding when he wasn’t breeding.

He was not ill behaved with the mares, just a lot less focused if he could smell mares in heat and this kept him directed to the job at hand.

Yep, Vicks and a stud shank.

My vet says of these guys “they need to be gelded between the ears” :wink: best thing I’ve ever heard!

I have one like this, and the best thing I found for him was getting him into routine work. He moved to the new place with new ladies, and lost his mind. Putting him on a longe and working him helped refocus him a bit, and eventually he got over the ‘holy crap I have to be away from them for a whole hour???’ panic moments he was having. Find someone nearby who can help you while you work with him! Good luck and stay safe!

I think others have already given great advice but I did want to add that he might just need some time. Moving can be a big adjustment, as is being exposed to mares the first time, etc. He may just need some time and space to get used it it all. Especially if he are not accustomed to travel or new environments.

I agree, the move may be just as much (or more) of a factor than the presence of mares.

Many TBs are gelded later in life and it can for sure be an issue. However, it usually isn’t such an extreme thing…instead there might be a studdish moment passing a mare in heat walking down the aisle, some longing looks over a fence, and sometimes aggressive/rough behavior with other geldings that necessitates private turnout. I have colts/stallions on my farm and none of them carry on the way you describe, so my best guess is that this is more of a behavior and move related issue rather than hormonal.

It wouldn’t hurt to get him hormone tested to rule out any remnants before trying behavioral modification. If he was gelded late or used for breeding at some point, it may have a behavioral component. But worth it to rule out medical before frustrating yourself with behavior stuff when it’s medical underneath it all and you make no headway.[/QUOTE]

I am a COTHER that would advise this too. I had a horse that was fine until I moved him and then became very stallion like. I had the vet out for something unrelated to the stallion behavior and she even thought he was acting like a stallion. So I had tests done and he had high testosterone levels and a hormone that only mares and stallions have. I had laproscopic surgery done and he had testicular tissue inside.

He’s fine now.