Chances of unhealthy foal?

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Chances of unhealthy foal?

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    01-11-2011, 05:22 PM
Teen Forum Moderator
Chances of unhealthy foal?

hey guys! So this thread is concerning the filly I work with- Sour, and her unborn baby. Sour was unintentionally mounted this June after a storm blew down a fence and one of our stallions escaped and hopped into her pen. We know she was mounted because there were....remanents on the ground when we got out there the morning after the storm. It is now January and I am almost 100% sure that Sour is pregnate (due to a dropped belly, tight udder, and movement when I feel around.) That wouldn't be a terrible thing considering that both she and this stallion are purebred AMH horses, except for two very important things.

1) This stallion, who's name is Montigo- is Sour's sire, making the foal inbred.
2) Sour was mounted only two months after turning two, and will of barely turned three by the time her foal is born.

I want to know what you guys think the chance of her foal being a dwarf, deformed, or stillborn are. Sour is not my horse so I can't really provide 24 hour care, or vetinary service- so I'm really worried about her baby. She's so young. Also, what are the chances of Sour being hurt? Montigo is a very small horse, and luckily Sour is a fairly large miniature- but still. Could the baby damage her? Any information or ideas will help guys, I really know nothing about pregnancy or foals in miniatures.

One last thing. Sour is not a very...friendly horse. I want to prepare her for if a vet does have to intervene to save her and/or her foal. She doesnt pick up her feet, and only allows me to touch her all over. She won't let males anywhere near her. Any ideas to get her ready? (ie; make sure she's ok with her tail being wrapped, her rear end being pressed on, etc?)

thanks <3
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    01-11-2011, 05:36 PM
Green Broke
TBH I would have had the foal pinched ASAP (it is also possible for a vet to cause a mare to abort the foal using drugs).

The chances are quite high for deformities or medical problems, quite how high will depend entirely on how line bred the mother and father are.

There is always a chance of a mare being hurt in foaling. There is always a chance of it going wrong and the mare dieing and it is unfortunate that she is quite so young. However foaling at 3 is not unheard of and I don't believe it is much more dangerous then foaling at 4.
    01-11-2011, 05:42 PM
The inbreeding, plus the fact that miniatures commonly have foaling problems (I know from experience, we lost our mini foal last year at birth), lead me to believe that something could certainly go wrong. Has a vet palpated her sicne the covering?
    01-11-2011, 07:03 PM
I presume the vet has deemed her pregnant - right?

If so, lets look at some possible problems. If both sire and dam carry dwarfism, certainly a dwarf foal might be possible. Since there is not test for it yet, you will just have to hope for the best. However, this possibility exists in any breeding of Minis.

She is young but many are bred at that age and carry successfully. Since you say the sire is smaller than her, I'd say she should be ok. Know though, that all Minis, whatever their age, are prone to foaling problems, so I hope you are prepared for this eventuality. Belonging to the Li'l Beginnings Miniature forum, would help you a long way to getting a ton of help from those who go through it all the time.

Please don't listen to, or believe, all the myths put about re. Inbred offspring being wierd, having 5 legs etc. It is just not true. Just know that many responsible and knowledgeable breeders, inbreed just to set type. The foal will no doubt, look much like the sire's side of the family. This breeding has doubled up though, on all good points and probably bad faults, which might be in the sire's line. Hopefully, since he has been kept as a stud, he is of top quality and has near perfect conformation.

The problem as I see it, is that starting now, you need to really work with this mare. By the time she foals, she should be allowing you and others, to touch every part of her body. You won't need her feaking out and trying to get away from you, if she does run into difficulties foaling. What are her favourite treats? Have quiet men offer them to her. She'll soon come around and get the idea that men are not all bad.

Make sure she has all her shots necessary. Make sure you have a stall ready for her when she foals and have her used to it before the foaling date. Don't allow her to be foaling somewhere out in a field with no light, in case of problems. A camera setup would be good, so she can be watched from the house. I'd keep her stalled in the night, a month before you think her due date might be. Monitor her feed intake too.

Have your foaling equipment ready and within reach, a month before you think she will foal. Don't allow many people except those she knows and already trusts, to be watching quietly, when she starts labour. Only assist if she needs it. Dimly lighted is best. Just enough so you can see what you and she are doing. She will most probably foal at night. If you see signs that she is close, then take turns with someone to watch her.

Oh - and I hope you have fixed all the fencing, so you don't have all this worry again in the future.

    01-11-2011, 07:14 PM
Teen Forum Moderator
The farm on which Sour is located is a non-profit therapeudic farm, so vet care is not hugely an option for her atleast during the pregnancy, which is what unsettles me the most. The owners are really only able to afford vet examinations/help when there is an emergency such as bad cases of colic, injuries that we can't care for ourselves, or mares already birthing who are having problems. So no, Sour has not been palpated since her covering due to lack of funds, as well as her temperment and mistrust of people.

She is already over halfway through her pregnancy. Can she still have her foal aborted? Even if she could though, I'm fairly sure that the owners would not be willing to pay for this to be done. These really are NOT ideal...or even fair... conditions to foal in since she's pretty much on her own, not to mention that no one but me cares about her, also due to her temperment. She was an accidential foal to begin with, so the owners don't really care how hard this is for her. I would pay for her vetinary work myself, but being only 15- there really isn't anything I can do. I don't have the fund for that sort of thing.

Luckily this foal's inbreeding will begin with Montigo. His line is clean, with no inbreeding in it, and Sour's is clean up until the fourth generation back from her. (Her great great great granddad was also her half brother)

Thanks guys, for your input. Since money is a huge issue though, I guess the real question is what I can to do give her the best advantage possible at making it through delivery.
    01-11-2011, 07:23 PM
Teen Forum Moderator
Double post due to not seeing FeatherFeet's post o.-

Thanks! All of that information is very helpful. I'll check out that forum. Montigo is a sixteen year old stud who was used in his earlier years in halter and in-hand jumping classes. He is a high value horse and his conformation is impeccable (besides being a bit on the thicker side xP)

All but two of the horses are pastured year-round, but I've been rebuilding a stall specifically for the use of Sour when her time comes. It isn't weather proof but will keep a lot of the chill out and is very roomy, as well as having a good roof. I'm hoping that will give her an advantage.
    01-11-2011, 09:23 PM
What is a therapeudic program doing with a stallion? If they can't afford to take care of the horses properly then they should close up shop. An inexpensive shot the day the horse was covered would have avoided any issues later on. Posts like this baffle me. I understand you are not at fault so this is not directed at you
    01-11-2011, 09:32 PM
What kind of 'therapeutic' farm is this? What do they do and with whom? I know of a few such farms, but they have very stable, well trained and quiet horses. No problem mares and certainly no stallions who could jump fencing.

I'm tending to think that this pregnant mare might be the least of their problems.

    01-11-2011, 10:13 PM
Oh my goodness. I just read the piece in your horse bio, about this Mini. Why do these people have a supposed 'therapeutic' farm? Are they even legal? Did anyone turn them in for manhandling this mare? Is this the way they train all the horses used in their 'programme'??

    01-12-2011, 01:42 PM
Teen Forum Moderator
From what I understand, Montigo is one of the owner's personal horses, and he is the only stallion out at the farm. And in the farm's defense, they can and do provide excellent care for their horses- they all are up to date on vaccinations as well as shodding, worming, and for those who need it- shoes. They just are not in any way set up to care for mares in foal, especially this one. Really, I don't think they would even HAVE Sour if it wasn't for the fact that I work with her, and they know that I enjoy her. They've offered to sell her to me multiple times for a very low price (and refused a few offers from other people) and believe me, I would buy her if I had somewhere to keep her, and the money to feed/care for her. The therapy farm is a combination of a normal riding facility and a hippotherapy facility for the use of austistic, and physically impared children. I do know that they ARE legal (thank goodness ^^) and have two professional, licensed riding instructors that volunteer as well as the owners having the necessary degrees and such. No I do NOT think its a good idea to keep this stallion at the farm, but generally he is kept away from where we do our therapy and he has a very well made enclosure (remember, that storm is the reason he was out in the first place.) how he got into her pen, I have no idea! I assume he jumped in, but how is beyond me she was in a metal corral that's atleast four feet tall.


As for Sour's handling before all of this, unfortunately it is a commonly used technique although I'd only heard of it being used as a fast method for saddle training large horses. Some new guy (who I absolutely dispise x.x) was the one that 'trained' her using this 'method.' and as far as I know, they haven't used it on anyone else... I don't even know why they let him work with her if they didn't know what he was going to do. I think that was definitely not a wise decision on the owner's part. He is the one who told me she was a brat, worthless, wouldnt do anything- etc. Unfortunately he still comes out to "help", but he mostly does manual labor now. (fixing fences, mowing, feeding, dadada. I personally would of banned him from wokring there at all.) There are many different people that work together out there and all of them seem to have different views on how to work with horses, and a few of them ARE like this one man. Some of them do more of the parelli type work, and others just use the plain old gentling method. Sour was just very unluck I guess, to be one of the horses that was trained wrong in every way.

I hope that cleared a bit up guys! I was in no way trying to bash the farm. They generally ARE a nice facility although they could use a little more stability and a little less 'helpful people' who have no idea what they're doing. They just...don't like Sour, just as she doesnt like them I guess.

I've decided that Im going to do my best to earn some money to get her checked out, as well as start working even harder with her on accepting other people. (thats going to be fun ) and just pray that God will let Sour and her baby be alright!

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