Check it Out!
[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next]
[Date Index] [Thread Index] [Author Index] [Subject Index]

Re: RideCamp: Pregnant mare: Put up or Put out?

Bonita B. Young wrote:

> I hate to disagree with your vet, unless there is some other issue with your mare
> I can not for the life of me understand why he would advise you to keep the mare
> in a stall for a month before her foaling date.  I even had mares foal in the
> pasture with no ill effects.

I have to agree here about letting the mare out.  I had the opportunity
to participate with the equine training and breeding farms at the
University of Florida and I learned so much.  (I even got to volunteer
at the foal NICU for premies and sick foals.  What an amazing
experience!)  The mares were allowed to be ridden & worked until their
size limited them, they became uncomfortable, or our tack didn't fit. 
Then, they went on 24 hr/day pasture (coastal bermuda pasture) and grain
as needed.  The mares were encouraged to foal out doors since it was a
<cleaner> environment than the stall.

Even a large foaling stall contains feces, no matter how neat the mare
is.  A very dirty environment for foaling.  Mares in the field had the
luxury of choosing their own spot to foal - invariably a clean grassy
spot, out of sight of the foal watchers.  :-)  The only exceptions to
this practice was if it was cold and raining where we thought that
hypothermia might be a problem.  (Yes, even N Central FL had times in
Feb. & March where it could be 35* F and raining.)  We'd bring them into
a foaling stall with low lighting, fesh straw bedding, and free choice
hay and water.

I remember that the Vet School saw quite a few foals come in septic that
were stall deliveries, but I can't remember one that could be attributed
to organisms contracted in the field.

My opinion has always been to allow the mare to live & foal as naturally
as possible, to allow the mare & foal to bond before I intruded (unless
there was an emergency that required intervention), and then to work
closely with the foal after that important bonding period.

Kati, you mentioned fescue pasture.  I know that some fescue is
endophyte free... is yours?  If it is, it is not a concern for the
mare's delivery and milk production.  If it does have endophytes, then
watch her when she is out.  If she chooses to not nibble the dead grass
at this time of year and sticks to the hay, it shouldn't be an issue

The ONLY advantage I can see to stalling the healthy mare is for the
handler's convenience.  You can walk in to assess her for signs of
imminent foaling without having to catch her up in the field to do it.

Linda Flemmer

Ridecamp is a service of Endurance Net,    
Information, Policy, Disclaimer:   

    Check it Out!    

Home    Events    Groups    Rider Directory    Market    RideCamp    Stuff

Back to TOC