Standing a Stud
So you've gotten the hang of breeding or maybe you have a few colts ready to retire that you think would make nice studs. It's easy to list them from their Manage page, and you can edit their fee there or in Stud Services as well. Stallions can be listed for stud starting in July of the year before they will retire. However, if you list your horse during booking season, he will automatically retire at the end of that year. Please don't list him unless you are positive you want him retired!
However, you must be at least 2 stars in the Breeding skill path to stand stallions at stud. This helps ensure that anyone standing stallions has a basic understanding of the game, knows what "stud quality" is, and is going to be active enough to handle incoming requests. If you aren't there yet, just keep playing and you'll level up soon! If you have a stallion you really want to stud, you might consider leasing him to a larger barn for the year with an agreement to split stud fees.
Stallions must have at least 50 racing points to stand at public stud. Once they have five foals on the ground and are accepted into the Stallion Incentive Program (SIP) they can also stand for public stud even if they do not have enough points to stand otherwise. You may breed private studs (not eligible for public) to your own mares if you choose, but NOT mares owned by anyone else. Points to become eligible to stud can be earned in ANY graded stakes race and are not that difficult to accumulate. Even a 25-30 potential can easily earn 50 points if they are raced strategically at 2 and 3 years old. There are several different ways to earn 30 points. For example, 5 G1 wins = 30 points, 6 G2 wins + 1 G1 win = 30 points, 15 G3 wins = 30 points, 10 G2 2nds = 30 points, and 15 G1 5ths = 30 points. As you can see, it's not always about winning. A colt who consistently places top 5 in G1 can easily earn enough points to stud, even if he rarely wins.
Customs are the one exception to the points required to stud rule. Any PC-purchased (not bred) custom is eligible to stand for stud without meeting any other requirements.
Make sure you have a full genotype purchased if you are standing a stallion. If you have hidden genes, also make sure those are shown. If a stallion does not have a genotype, he will be unable to stand for public stud, which could be a big loss of business for you! Likewise, if you have hiddens but don't have them shown, people tend to assume they aren't good and may pass your stallion by without another glance.
Once you've decided you want to stand a stud, you can also use the 'Calculate Stud Fee' option on his Manage or Breeding info page to find out what FFH suggests his stud fee should be. This is based on his individual genetics and traits, and has been created to help create some degree of uniformity on the site (it gets confusing when two equal studs vary greatly in price!). While this is suggested, it is not a requirement. You can make his fee higher or lower based on your own opinions, and there are many valid reasons for doing so.
Some members choose to set a lower stud fee the first year or two, and then increase it once the stud has proven himself as a producer. Other reasons for setting it lower may be if a stallion has bad genes in an important area (development, intelligence) even though he has good genes in other areas. On the other hand, a stud fee might be increased by having a rare color or markings or by having great genes in important areas. Of course, popularity/demand can also be a valid reason for charging a little more for a stud.