I've dug out the foaling kit and am preparing to restock it, and that got me to wondering,what things do those of you who breed horses or are expecting a foal have in your foaling kits?
There's the basics,of course,but I'm curious to see if there's other things that some of us may not think to include in our kits.
Please list what the item is and what it's in there to be used for.
Items in my Foaling Kit: (or close on hand)
-flashlight and batteries: extra light always comes in handy!
-a phone of some type: if you need to make a call for some extra hands or the vet,it's better if you can do it immediately and without leaving your mare.I also have the vet's number close at hand.
-notepad and pencils:to take notes of the foaling,mare's progress,ect.
-clock or watch: to keep track of the timeline
-clean towels and rags: lots of them and assorted sizes,used for many purposes!
-mild liquid soap: for washing the mare. Diluted Betadine solution will work too.
-Novalsan/betadine,ect.: for dipping the foal's navel
-tail wrap: I loosely braid the tail and wrap the upper portion with vet wrap.
-string/fishing line/baler twine:to tie off the foal's cord if it won't break on it's own and I have to cut it,and to tie up the placenta although I usually just tie the placenta itself into a few knots until it's not dragging on the ground.
-obstretical/rubber gloves:to wear if I need to go in and assist.
-garbage bags:to put the placenta in if you need to keep it,to put dirty clothes into,ect.
-a couple small containers:to use to dip the navel or if you need to get some milk.I will sometimes use a quirt bottle to do the navel instead.
-scissors and a knife:to pierce a tough sac,cut the placenta during a red bag delivery,cut the cord,cut string,ect.
-a bucket or two:for washing up,and to mix antiseptic/lubricant solution if I need to go in and reposition the foal.
-Vasiline:to lubricate hands,ect. if necessary.
-paper towels:to clean myself up.
-halter and lead rope: if I need to move,tie,or restrain the mare quickly for whatever reason.
-syringe: if I need to syringe some milk into a weak foal.
-thermometer:in case I need to take mare's or foal's temperature.
-homemade breast pump:to pump colostrum/milk out of udder if needed.I use a LARGE syringe with the tip cut off and plunger inserted "backwards"). Some mares are really tough to milk by hand!
-camera: to take lots and lots of pictures,of course! :)
I also either have on hand or know where I can get it:
-jump start:in case the foal needs that extra boost.
-Ivermectin: to deworm the mare after foaling.
-oxytocin: in case the mare needs help getting rid of the afterbirth.
-enema: if baby's having issues getting that first poop out.
I've probably forgotten something..Will add if I think of something I missed.
Just curious.. what is jump start? and how do you determine if you need to use it?
Items that are not on your list but are in my kit...
Sterile Water: Its not absolutely necessary but having jugs of water on handy is convenient if you don't have a pump near by. You can sterilize any water with a few squirts of Povidine Iodine, or Betadine
Foal Halter: For imprinting if you deem necessary
Stud Chain/Whip: You never know how a mare will act with her new foal. Rather a chain over the nose or under the lip than a dead foal or injured person. These are more "know where its at" rather than actually putting in the kit.
Baby Bottle: Its just a human bottle with the nipple slit open farther. Just in case you have to mix up and administer colostrum or milk the mare and hand feed.
Sterile cotton roll/Gauze Pads: You can use these to wipe the umbilical stump rather than dip or spray its all personal preference! You can also use to clean the mares lady parts and udders.
Thermos with Hot Water: obviously this is a last minute thing. but if you need to heat up frozen colostrum, this is a safe way. Its portable which is convenient and it wont kill the antibodies in colostrum like a microwave will. Or if you need to administer an enema, use it to warm it up before for the foals comfort. but if your really feeling generous and the above doesn't apply... make a warm mash for your lovely mare for a job well done. :)
Jump Start is a probiotic paste with vitamins,minerals,enzymes,ect. that you can give to weak or slow foals.
The cotton roll is a good idea;I always just used a soft cotton cloth,but the gauze would work great too.
I am lucky enough to have both hot and cold water access not too far from the barn,definitely comes in handy!
I did not think to put in a bottle,I will have to snitch one out of the lambing box.lol
The foal halter is in my foal imprinting box. :)
And good point with the stud chain and whip! A whip certainly would have come in handy a few years ago when my maiden mare was super protective of her baby and literally attacked anyone who came near. I will have to move mine closer to the foaling stall..
what is "red bag"? How common is it? should I worry about it?! first time mommy here :/
In a Red Bag birth, the placenta detaches from the mare prematurely and the oxygen supply to the baby is cut off. It is important that the mare be aided and that the baby gets out of momma very quickly.When there is a red bag birth, you will see a red bag protruding from the mare rather than the typical white bag.
The red bag is much tougher than the white sac. It almost feels like a basketball. Have something to cut it open and do not rely on your fingers. Scissors or a knife should do it.
After cutting the red sac open, you need to reach inside of it and find the baby hooves which will be inside the white sac.Because of the fact that the baby needs to get out quickly,alot of vets recommend that you pull even if the mare is not contracting.
I'm not really sure how common it is,I myself have never had one in any of my mares nor seen one at any of the breeding barns I've worked at.
Ok a foaling kit really should contain and I would not go without these things
1. a child enema
2.tube of pro bios
3. Tetnus shot
4. nose sucker
6. Rubber gloves
9. Iodine or betadine
10. Sterile Scalpel (.89 at your feed store in with the needles and syringes)
11. Vet wrap
12.Roll Cotton wadding
14. Mild soap
15. Fishing line
of course you have some sort of watch and phone (vet # programmed in)and you might need a halter and lead rope but I dont actually put them in my foaling kit as I use them everyday
What would you use fishing line for? Also, where would you purchase a stethascope and nose sucker? I haven't gotten many things for my foaling kit O.O
Haha, I should have known that! Thanks Kansas! Going shopping tomorrow!
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