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Inherited Pregnant Mare
So, I have "inherited" a pregnant AQHA horse, 6 years old. The person(s) from which I have obatained her from really know very little about horses, especially pregnant ones. I myself know alot about horses, just not quite as experienced when it comes to pregnant Mares. I myself have mianly Paso Fino's and TB's, and have only had two foals born on the farm, both Paso's, and both being my horses which were supervised and cared for from day one as being with foal....to make a long story short, the mare I have obtained to my knowledge (which The people I got her from really are no help as far as giving me any information on the horse, to them she was just a horse) has been allowed to graze freely 24/7 on pasture up until 2 weeks ago when I got her. I live in Western NC, and pastures are mainly made up of fescue grass. Since I have had her she stays stalled, on Orchard/Timothy hay mix with Alfalfa and Brood Mare feed as well as brood mare supplements. She is approx. on day 335 of pregnancy (they can't even give me the exact date of when she was covered, much less did they have her checked to see if she took). So, what are the concerns of this mare being allowed to graze freely, on most likely fescue grass, and is there anything further I can do? I know the risks of fescue toxins with pregnant mares, but was wondering if anyone has been through a similar situation. The vet has been out and she is confirmed, of course, there is no such thing as a due date in a horse I know. As of now she still has a very good appetite, not too keen on the hay though as I figure she's never had it, def looks prego, the baby has dropped quite low, and has very little in her udder. She is overall a very healthy looking and well fed horse, just concerned about all of the fescue intake, espcially it being taken in during third trimester. I'm sorry if some of this makes no since, I'm having a hard time getting across what I'm trying to ask without writing a novel:wink:
First, I'd ask the vet if the fescue in your area is known to have the endophyte that causes the issues, some areas do not. If it does, you've done right by getting her off of it, I'd ask how he feels about a Domperidone (not sure of spelling rhyms with Dom Perignon Champagne and almost as costly) shot or multiple shots to encourage milk production. Some of the issues with Fescue Toxicity are lack of milk and Red Bag(Placenta Previa) which can result in a dead foal very quickly. Here's a link to a good article in lay terms about this kind of delivery: Red Bag Delivery. If you're not a very experienced person with foaling out mares you might either want to send the mare to the vet hospital for foaling out or make sure the vet is close enough to respond to you very very quickly and read up on how to handle a Red Bag delivery. Fortunately they don't happen often, it's just that fescue with a particular endophyte is known to cause it. Fescue toxicity is also known to cause mares to 'go over' their due dates which can range from 335 - 365 days for normal gestation. After 365 days frequently the foal outgrows the placenta and presents as 'small for age' or Postmature. Here's a link to a section in the Merck Vet Manual that explains the issues. Merck Veterinary Manual
So, if the vet feels the mare is/will suffer issues from the fescue toxicity, I'd be very careful during this foaling.
Thanks so much for the info and links. Just trying to get all the info and knowledge as quickly as I can. I know I must be prepared for anything with this mare, not knowing very much about her and her history. The vet is suppose to be coming out Monday, hopefully she doesn't foal before then, I'm rather worried about this girl.
This is very interesting, I'm staying tuned for this one:)
Keeping finger's crossed for a healthy momma and baby!
Hoping it all goes well, subbing
Hope it all goes well!
How did the vet check go?
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