Horse owners and breeders face a number of decisions when purchasing their horses including whether to purchase a mare (fertile female), stallion or castrated male.
Despite the many negative stereotypes that are associated with bestiality and zoophilia, having sex with animals is not immoral or abusive. However, the question of how do horses have sex is an important one.
Mares are seasonal breeders, meaning they cycle naturally only at a certain time of year to ensure that they deliver foals, ideally in temperate weather. During the winter, when the days are short, a mare’s ovaries go into a period of inactivity called anestrus. Increasing amounts of daylight in spring trigger the ovulation cycle and cause her to become sexually receptive to the stallion on a regular basis. A normal healthy mare cycles every 18-24 days, ovulating each time a small structure in her ovary called a follicle matures and ovulates.
During the ovulation cycle, each follicle releases billions of sperm into her vagina. If the sperm is of good quality, the mare has a high chance of becoming pregnant.
A veterinarian or equine reproduction manager can monitor the progress of a mare’s ovulation by palpating (feeling through the rectal wall) her follicles and uterus to detect the presence of an ovulating follicle. The veterinarian can also determine the exact date of ovulation by administering ovulation-inducing drugs that reach their maximum effect at just the right moment.
If the mare’s ovulation is detected at the right time, a vet or reproduction specialist will perform artificial insemination using either fresh chilled semen or frozen semen. The former is preferred, as it typically has a similar or slightly higher conception rate than natural mating and can be used at any time of the year.
A stallion is a mature male horse aged four or more and a mare is a mature female horse. A stallions job is to impregnate mares. The mares ovulation is triggered by a follicle releasing estrogen and the corpus luteum secreting progesterone. The length of the estrus and diestrus phases varies between breeds. A stallion may be kept at a stud farm or allowed to roam free for pasture breeding.
Stallions may also be used for artificial insemination, or AI, to breed mares without the need for them to travel to him. Frozen semen may be collected from a stallion and stored to be used for breeding after his death.
While it is important to consider a horse’s pedigree when choosing a stallion for breeding, it is equally important to consider his performance and health as well. The performance of a horse can be greatly improved by selective breeding for specific characteristics, such as temperament, size, and conformation.
While it is difficult to study the impact of sex stereotypes on horse behaviour, it is likely that a ‘gendered’ perception of horses contributes to an unconscious bias when trainers and riders perceive unwanted behaviours from horses they are riding or working with. This can result in punishment, which can lead to behavioural problems and is particularly common in racing, where horses with poor temperaments are more likely to be euthanised than those with a good temperament.
Like many other mammals, horse reproduction occurs through a courtship process followed by the stallion (male horse) mounting the receptive mare. Mares show signs of being in heat by releasing pheromones through their urine and exhibiting physical characteristics such as a swollen vulva and possible discharge.
A stallion will typically begin the courtship ritual by sniffing and nuzzling the mare to determine her receptiveness. He may then paw her and rub against her to further test her for readiness. If the mare continues to display receptive behavior, she will lift her tail to him and allow him to mount her. The courtship typically lasts for a few minutes, longer than the mating act itself.
Male horses, called stallions, do not have balls and instead have internal reproductive organs that they use to produce sperm. The external structures that are typically seen hanging below a stallion’s belly are actually called “hobbies” and consist of fatty tissue and blood vessels that help to cool the stallion’s internal reproductive organs.
Horse sperm is collected for various purposes including artificial insemination for breeding and research. The sperm is screened for various genetic qualities and is used to breed a variety of different horses. The sperm is also useful in a number of veterinary and medical procedures.
The sexual activity between mares and stallions is called copulation. It is a very important process in a horse’s life, as it allows them to reproduce. It also strengthens their bonds. A stallion is an intact adult male horse that has all of the equipment needed to produce semen. This includes two testes, three accessory sex glands and a series of tubules that transport sperm to the female reproductive tract.
In order for a mare to become fertile, it must first come into heat. The presence of pheromones in urine indicates that the mare is ready to breed and can be detected by stallions. When a stallion detects pheromones from a mare, he will engage in courtship with her. He will lick and brush her, and may even buck her. During this time, the stallion will display his genitals in a very obvious way. The stallion will then engage in mating with the mare.
Having sex with a horse is known as zoophilia, and there are many people who are attracted to horses sexually. Most zoophiles hide in the zoosexual closet because they are afraid of being persecuted by delusional unfair laws and social taboos. They often form deep loving relationships with their animal partners and they describe this as a very fulfilling lifestyle.