First, the horsemen brought out a teaser horse. A teaser horse is the warm-up act, an important but ultimately expendable creature. This one's name was Popeye, and he was a gelding. Popeye nuzzled and licked the maiden on her left flank. She urinated, a sign that she was ready. A horseman held a "twitch" that covered her mouth, while another man held her left front leg with a strap. Two more men stood at her flanks. Popeye reared up and plopped on her back and there was a sudden grunting and whinnying and with both hind legs Canada Miss bucked and threw Popeye off her back. "Poor little girl. This is all new for her," said her owner.
Josh Pons did not like this. He wasn't going to let his prize stallion get near this creature until she got tranked. The tranquilizer took a few minutes to take effect. Canada Miss started to look a little sloppy. Another teaser came out of the stud barn, this one named Dew. Dew was no gelding--he had all the equipment.
Dew tried to mount her, but she bucked away.
"He's a little scared right now. The mare doesn't look like she's ready and he's not standing there with a giant hard-on ready to knock her down," said Pons. One notices that Pons doesn't mince words. No one around here is guilty of being pretentious.
Obviously, the traditional breeding method is a lot harder than just letting a couple of horses loose in a pasture and waiting for nature to take its course. And it's a far sight harder than artificial insemination. Pons said that if AI were allowed--as it is with standard-bred horses--breeding would be a one-pony trick.
"Instead of a teasing chute we'd have some sort of a riding bronco bull, a leather mare. The stallion would mount it, and a veterinarian would collect the ejaculant in an artificial vagina," he said.
The prohibition is more than just tradition. It's good business. Artificial insemination would create a rush on sperm from a select few champion stallions. Midlevel stallions would see their stud fees plummet.
Dew, the teaser, finally mounted Canada Miss. The process is not gentle. Two horses mating is a lot of meat in motion. Four men had to control the horses, and one of these men, Eduardo, had the most critical job of all, which is to reach with his right hand and grab Dew's erect penis, which is thick as a baseball bat and almost as long, and pull it to one side to prevent penetration. When it comes to consummating the act, Dew don't.
Pons noted that poor Popeye, the gelding, has been tugged to the side like this so many times that he's developed a pronounced curvature.
"He's got a bent dick," Pons said.
Finally it was time to bring out the breeding stallion, Allen's Prospect. His stud fee is $10,000 and he averages 1.7 covers before the mare is in foal--an excellent batting average in the horse business. He emerged from the barn whinnying and stamping his feet. Eduardo was now wearing a helmet, a defense against biting. The horsemen washed the stallion's genitals in soap and water and led him to the mare. By now the old man, Joe, had wandered up, and he was the only one who looked at peace. "He's a good breeding horse. He won't mess around." The four horsemen held the mare. Allen's Prospect mounted her, and the horsemen on either side guided his penis into the mare and held onto it while the horses brayed and whinnied and huffed--more than a ton of towering bucking horseflesh--and, after about 30 seconds, the stallion ejaculated and instantly slipped out of her and headed back to the barn.