I will have many questions and will provide all of the information that I have. I rescued a 20 year old Quarter Arab mare 3.5 months ago. She was left out to pasture, and appeared to have a hay belly or possibly worms. I specifically asked if she was pregnant as I have horse experience, but DEFINITELY not breeding experience, and was told no she is just out of shape, and has a hay belly. I was told she was not pregnant, and that she had never been bred.
I have been riding her and caring for her for the last three months and the belly never went down. NOW she is huge, clear liquid is coming out of her teats, and starting to turn cloudy, and she is very soft in the tail, and we have been seeing the baby move... (Obviously she is pregnant) My first question is her vulva seemed to be relaxing and we assumed the baby was coming... but now not so relaxed? Is that normal? Should I be worried?
Also yellow cloudy liquid can be very freely expressed from one side (left) and only a little from the right side. On Friday 07/17/2009 I found yellow tinged goo ( not sure how else to describe it) on her vulva, in her vulva, and very slightly dripping down her legs. Vet said not an infection (Thank G) probably her mucus plug... wouldn't that mean the baby should come by now???... Anyone able to assist me??
I would like to have some kind of time frame when the baby will be born... the mare is eating normally, drinking normally, and had very slight bouts of loose stool at times, biting at her sides, carrying her tail off to the side constantly, stomping, no rolling, nothing violent, just kicking ...
I LOVE this mare, we have bonded very tightly. In fact when I got off her a month ago (didn't know she was pregnant) to walk by some water. (She doesn't like water) I twisted my ankle. My daughter came to get her so that I could limp home and she refused pulling against the bridal to stay with me and walk along side me... I do not want anything to happen to this mare. And I do not have any horse breeding experience....
It sounds like she is very close . Do you have a small grassy yard you can keep her in at night ( weather proving) or a stable ( with clean straw)?
Its best you start checking on her at night between 10pm and 4am most mares foal in that time & most mares are fine doing it themselves but given her age she should be monitered .
There are many things that can go wrong.
Its ok to handle her teats but don't express milk you could be depleating the supply of Colostrum ( first milk) that has all the immune boosting things for the foal.
Once she is accustomed to having her udder and teats handled, regular checks can reveal when the udder begins to fill. This will first be felt near the belly, and then can be discerned in the mammary glands and nipples. As the mare gets closer to foaling, her nipples will thicken, hang down lower, and begin to develop a thick, waxy material. When the nipples “wax,” it is a fairly reliable indicator that the foal will be born within the next day or so.
Still, none of these indicators are absolute. Remember that mares approach foaling in their own individual ways. Some do not bag up at all, while others will produce copious amounts of milk and may even leak milk for days before the foal is born. Some mares will wax and others will not. Evaluate all the signs as an overall indicator of impending foaling, rather than relying on any one sign.
Other things to look for are signs of the rump and tailhead muscles softening. This helps to prepare the pelvic area to stretch during labor and foaling. The vulva may also become swollen and elongated. Be aware of changes in the mare’s behavior. This may indicate that foaling is imminent. Mares who behave more or less affectionately than usual, try to separate themselves from other horses, seem more nervous, may be nearing the start of labor. Also, loss of appetite is an indicator of approaching foaling. Foaling generally occurs between 10pm and 4am, so if a mare that normally eats well is uninterested in her dinner, she may be close to delivery.
Check out this site for more info Horse Foaling, Birth and Pregnant Mare Care
And maybe try and find a friend or ask around for some one exsperianced to be your foal hand. You'll be amazed how many people are willing to help when it comes to horses.